Mani Ratnam’s Ponniyin Selvan has hit theatres and reviews claim it to be ‘unapologetic’ and ‘brilliant’.

It may interest many to know that the film is based on the 1950 book by author Kalki Krishnamurthy.

Picture credits: Twitter: @veejaysai

Here are a few unmissable facts about the legendary writer.

Krishnamurthy was born on 9 September 1899 in Pattamangalam village in Tamil Nadu.

He was an author, journalist, activist, poet and playwright.

In 1921, he dropped out of school and joined the Non-Cooperation Movement.

For his thoughts and opinions, the writer was imprisoned thrice during the freedom struggle.

He went on to write a book titled ‘Moondru Matha Kadunkaval’, wherein he spoke about his experience in jail.

He published his first ever story in 1927 and took a whole three years to finish the ‘Ponniyin Selvan’ novel.

He went by the pen name Kalki (Lord Vishnu’s final avatar) as he wanted to “destroy regressive regimes, express radical thoughts, take readers into new directions, and create a new era!”

In total, he penned five novels, 10 novellas and 120 short stories.

His fictional novel Alai Osai which revolved around the freedom struggle won the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1957.

At the age of 55, he died of tuberculosis on 5 December 1954. And in 1999, the Department of Post released a postage stamp in his honour to mark his birth centenary.