Our first audiobook, Ramayana: An Ancient Indian Epic, was written and narrated by Shreyas Pulle and Ayur Pulle in 2016 when they were 17 and 12. The boys had done school plays and storyboards on Diwali, and the epic story behind the festival – the Ramayana. The boys felt a short version of this ancient epic in modern English would be just right. Their one-hour audiobook received acclaim from The Times, UK as one of “Best Audiobooks of 2017”. British Airways selected it for in-flight entertainment on long haul flights, and after a one-year trial, BA have extended this for ten years! We donated our audiobook to the RNIB, who converted it into Braille as well.
In 2019, Puranas’ Director Neelima Penumarthy went back to her school, Kendriya Vidyalaya, No. 1, Uppal in Hyderabad, India to produce the Hindi version of the audiobook. Mr P. Srinivasa Raju, headmaster of the school was very excited about the project and gave it his full support. Mrs. Sonali Maitri, senior Hindi teacher at the school, shortlisted the students for the narration. Mrs Padmaja Srivastava, a retired Hindi teacher from the school, translated the English narration into Hindi. Six students – Saatvic and Jaswanth from Class 12, and Manasa, Harini, Srinidhi and Lakshya from Class 10 narrated the story. They all rehearsed very diligently over many months! The Hindi audiobook is available on Audible.in
In January 2018, Shreyas and Ayur donated the Ramayana e-book and audiobook to the Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB), who converted it into Braille. In July 2018, Neelima donated the Braille English copy to Devnar School for the Blind, Begumpet, Hyderabad. The director of the school, Mr Deva Gowda, immediately agreed to some of his blind students narrating a Telugu translation. Neelima’s mother Mrs. Jahnavi Penumarthy, translated the English version into Telugu. With the help of Telugu teacher Mr Shravan Linampally, three immensely talented blind students, Anil, Aditya and Ranjit narrated the Telugu audiobook, after many months of rehearsals. The Telugu audiobook is available on audible.in