Warm, humble and down-to-earth – these were the first words that came to my mind after I met Prathamesh Maulingkar, the man who won the Mister Supranational title in 2018. In this exclusive interview, he talks about what winning the title means to him, love for football, importance of fitness in his life, the cause that is close to his heart and acting ambition.
It has been a couple of months since you won the title of Mister Supranational. Do you want to use this title to further your career or do you have a larger goal in mind?
I have several goals in my mind. There have been so many opportunities that came my way after winning the title. I want to have an NGO to spread awareness about the pollution taking place in the oceans. There is a lot of travelling involved this year.
You just mentioned oceans. You love diving, don’t you?
Yes, I do. Diving is one of my favourite hobbies. I have been diving for almost six years now. When you dive into the water, you forget about everything else. It is like a mini gateway from the world outside the water. All you do is listen and observe. It is something which I am very close to and can never stop doing.
You hail from a small village in Goa. The kind of life you have had while growing up is very different from the kind you have now.
Yes, I call Goa my paradise. In Goa, I cannot do a lot of things which I can do here. I had to come to Mumbai to pursue my career as a model. I have been living in Mumbai sine the last six months but I make it a point to go to Goa at least once every month. I am very close to my family and I cannot stay away from them for a very long period of time. I also started a gym in Goa two years back which my father is now looking after.
The gym is doing very well in Goa. Would you like to open a branch in Mumbai too?
Mumbai is a huge and highly competitive market, so I would like to consider a few things before taking the plunge. At the moment, I am planning to open a few more gyms in Goa. If everything goes well, I would love to have my gym branch out to Mumbai and other cities across the country.
Initially, you wanted to pursue a career in football.
Yes, I always wanted to be a footballer. Football is something which is very close to my heart. In Mumbai, it is a little difficult to make time for it because of the busy schedule. When I was in Goa, I used to play every evening. It is my first love.
You suffered from an injury which forced you to take a break from it.
Yes, I was around twenty-three when I suffered from that injury. The injury kept me away from the game for some time. In fact, this is when modelling happened to me. I met this friend of mine at a gym who asked what I was up to. I told I was recovering from an injury. He asked me, ‘if you are injured, why don’t you model?’. He helped me get in touch with Wendeel Rodrigues. I did my first show in Delhi for Wendell Rdrigues.
A lot of people get into fitness after they decide to become a model or an actor. With you, it was the other way around.
Fitness actually happened to me because of football. If you are a footballer, you have to be fit. Since I was a footballer, I have to have the strength to play the sport well. That is what got me attracted to fitness in the first place. I was one of the six-pack footballers in India (laughs).
Most Pageant winners have a pet cause which they support. Do you have one too?
I have been born and brought up in Goa and I have always felt very sad to see all the plastic pollution in the sea. When I dive, I see plastic more than fishes. We have to do something about it now before it is too late. ‘Save The Ocean’ is a campaign I strongly believe in and have been working towards it as well as an individual.
What is that one tip you would give to the men who aspire to participate in pageants?
Be yourself. It is all about knowing yourself well and projecting yourself in the most honest manner. This is something that helps you in your personal life as well.
Is there any plan to get into the movies?
Yes, but I have to do a lot of work before that. I have to work on my acting, diction and a lot of other things. I have to undergo intensive training before I face the camera as an actor. I have been a footballer, a model and a pageant winner. Each of these things required a different kind of a training. Similarly, I need to train myself in a few things before I start my career as an actor.