OBITUARY – KRISHNA PRASAD DAS (CARLO PAGLIA)
With great sadness I read on VNN this morning that my old friend Krishna Prasad Das has passed away. I first met him in Amsterdam in 1978 during the ISKCON Janmastami festival when he was named bhakta Carlo. He was at least 15 years older than me and had two small children who joined me in the harinama procession on the streets of Amsterdam that day. He was an Italian guest worker living in Belgium. His wife was cooking for the Sunday feasts in Brussels temple in 1978, before it closed down and the family moved down to New Mayapur in France.
When I got harinama initiation from Bhagavandas in France in July 1979, one shaved up devotee sat next to me in the yajna and showed me how the ceremony worked. I could not recognise him because as a congregational member he used to have black hair and a beard, but he told me that he was the same bhakta Carlo. We got harinam together and he got the name Krishna Purush das.
Much later, in 1993, as I began to distribute my translations of the Gosvamis’ books, he wrote me an enthusiastic letter from France, begging me for a drop of this nectar. Unfortunately we could not meet then but in 2000 I met him again in the flesh, at Radhakund. He was living like a babaji, renouncing his large family – by that time he was a grandfather – and doing bhajan in an austere kutir at Kusum Sarovara.
He came often to the small English library at Nutonghera to borrow books on raganuga bhakti. I tried to convince him to accept a raganuga guru, which he was initially reluctant to do, but he did take diksa at Radhakund from Tinkuri Baba’s disciple Oriya Krishnadas Ji in 2002. I was not aware that he had any illness by that time. He will be greatly missed, he was very dear to both the raganuga sadhakas of Radhakunda and the followers of A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, whom he always kept in high esteem.