Karan Bajaj

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Karan Bajaj
Born (1979-06-30) 30 June 1979 (age 40)
OccupationSenior VP & General Manager and author
Alma materIndian Institute of Management, Bangalore Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra
Notable works"Keep Off The Grass" (2008)
"Johnny Gone Down" (2010)
The Seeker (2015)
Years active2008 - Present

Karan Bajaj is an Indian American author of three contemporary Indian novels, Keep Off the Grass (2008), Johnny Gone Down (2010) and The Seeker (2015). Bajaj's first novel, Keep Off the Grass, which became a bestseller with more than 70,000 copies sold in the year of release, was a semi-finalist for the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award and was longlisted for the Indiaplaza Golden Quill Award.[1] Together his novels have sold more than 200,000 copies in India.[1]

Biographical details[edit]

Born in 1979 into an Indian Army family, Karan studied in various schools in Delhi, Shimla, Ranchi, Jabalpur, Lucknow and Assam.

Karan Bajaj has recently been appointed as Senior Vice President and General Manager ( South Asia ) for Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific. He has also worked as the Chief Marketing Officer of Aden + Anais in New York.[2] He graduated from the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore in 2002 after completing his engineering from Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra, Ranchi in 2000. He was selected as one of the top ten young business leaders of India by the Aditya Birla Foundation. Karan has earlier worked as a Director for Kraft Foods, a Brand Manager for Procter & Gamble and a management consultant for the Boston Consulting Group in India, the Philippines, Singapore and the U.S., and was nominated a 'Top 40 under 40 marketer in the U.S.' by Advertising Age in 2007.[3]

In various interviews, he has said that his interests in Eastern mysticism, backpacking, and hiking are his writing inspirations.

Keep Off The Grass[edit]

Keep Off The Grass was Bajaj's first venture into writing. The story is about a psychedelic road trip of a 25-year-old Yale graduate through the length and breadth of India.[4] The journey is made by a brilliant youngster named Samrat, born to immigrant parents in the U.S. who decides to go out in search of his roots. Along the way Samrat, the protagonist, ends up in prison for possession of marijuana, develops a drug addiction, meditates in the foothills of the Himalayas, has a one-night stand with a hippie in Dharamsala and meets flesh-eating Aghoree saints on the banks of Varanasi.[5]

Future film[edit]

Kunal Kohli Productions, UTV Productions, and Mosaic Media Group bid for the film rights of the book. They were eventually sold to Mosaic Media Group, the producing partners of Get Shorty, Talladega Nights, Batman and The Dark Knight. Ben Rekhi, the director of Waterborne has been signed up as director. The director has stated that the film will be "like an Indian version of The Motorcycle Diaries".[5][6]

Johnny Gone Down[edit]

Bajaj's second novel, Johnny Gone Down, is a thriller published by HarperCollins-India in 2010. The novel is about the bizarre, almost surreal series of events that transform an Ivy League MIT graduate into first a genocide survivor, then a Buddhist monk, a drug lord, a homeless accountant, a software mogul, and a deadly game fighter over a period of twenty years.[7]

Feature film[edit]

Tim Schroeder of Cahuenga Motion Pictures has signed on as the director of the Johnny Gone Down film, scheduled for release in 2016.

The Seeker[edit]

Bajaj's third novel, The Seeker, was published by Penguin Random House India in June 2015. The novel is about an investment banker in New York who embarks on a quest to become a yogi in the Himalayas.[8] It was inspired by Bajaj's one-year sabbatical traveling from Europe to India, learning Hatha yoga in an ashram in India, and practicing meditation in the Himalayas. The book opened to strong reviews in India and was a bestseller at launch with several reviewers comparing it to Herman Hesse's Siddhartha (novel).[9][10] The Statesman called it "engaging, convincing, realistic and highly readable", noting that The Seeker was released five years after Johny Gone Down in 2010 and the author took this break to refine his writing which is truly reflected in The Seeker.[11]

The Yoga of Max's Discontent[edit]

The Yoga of Max's Discontent (published in India as The Seeker) will be published the Riverhead Books imprint of Penguin Random House in May 2016. This is Bajaj's first international release. The novel is about an investment banker in New York who embarks on a quest to become a yogi in the Himalayas.Bajaj, Karan (May 2016). The Yoga of Max’s Discontent.


  1. ^ a b Sra, Gunjeet (25 September 2010). "Karan Bajaj: Writer at Large". India Today. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 8 March 2015. Retrieved 15 March 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "40 Under 40: 11 - 20". Advertising Age. 13 July 2007. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  4. ^ Nair, Nandini. "The grass is green". The Hindu. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  5. ^ a b "Karan Bajaj's 'Keep Off The Grass' set to become Hollywood film". Deccan Herald. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  6. ^ "Karan's novel captures youth angst: Ben Rekhi". The Times of India. 24 July 2009. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  7. ^ Singh, Shivangi (13 May 2012). "Comparing me to Rakhi Sawant was helpful: Karan Bajaj". Zeenews. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  8. ^ Mudasser Nofli, Zafri (4 January 2015). "Books to Watch Out for in 2015". Outlook India. Retrieved 14 March 2015.
  9. ^ Srinivasan, Madhumitha (4 January 2015). "I am a Yogi First". The Hindu. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  10. ^ Ganesh, Ambarish (16 August 2015). "'The Seeker' By Karan Bajaj - Book Review". Indian Nerve. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  11. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 25 November 2015. Retrieved 29 August 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

External links[edit]