From being the face of Doordarshan, the Indian public service broadcaster, in Mumbai in the 80s to becoming a prominent face of Indian-origin in Australian TV, Kumud Merani has literally travelled a long way. Presently, she is an Australia Day ambassador and devotes her time to community work, in particular the maintenance of Indian art and culture in Australia.
Kumud has been a pioneer of Indian Theatre in Australia. She is also a linguistic scholar proficient in about 8 languages, has translated several plays from Marathi to Hindi, besides playing roles in several. Most notable among these was ‘Lafda’ – her first full-length play translated from Marathi; yet others being ‘Jis Lahore Nayee Dekhya’, ‘Toba Tek Singh’ and ‘The Nautch Girls’, with the latter based on the true life of the tawaifs or courtesans of India.
Recently, she has also covered India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi's recent visit to Australia and interviewed a wide range of celebrities from the sub-continent including acclaimed artists such as Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Ghulam Ali and Jagjit Singh and former prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee.
Kumud is a recipient of over two score International awards – including the NSW premier’s Award, awarded thrice. Kumud states that, “Awards are such a wonderful recognition of one’s hard work and provide further inspiration, but to me the love of my fans and audiences is the biggest award”.