Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik needs no introduction. He joined politics in 1996, after the death of his father Biju Patnaik, leader of the Janata Dal, and was elected to the 11th Lok Sabha in the by-election from Aska Parliamentary Constituency from his state. Among the best performing Chief Ministers of the country, he has steered the State of Odisha on the path of progress and development by deft administration and statesmanship. A leader of the masses, his pro-poor policies have endeared himself to the people, who have returned him to power for three consecutive terms.
He has authored three critically acclaimed books, A Second Paradise: Indian Country Life 1590-1947, A Desert Kingdom: The People of Bikaner, and The Garden of Life: An Introduction to the Healing Plants of India, while being the founder member of the Indian National Trust for Art & Cultural Heritage (INTACH).
A prominent politician, Dharmendra Pradhan is the Union Minister of State (independent charge) for Petroleum and Natural Gas. A social worker from the start, Pradhan has worked for the development of backward classes and rehabilitation of farmers.
about the problems faced by the youth, such as unemployment and technical education. He also works for the development of backward classes and the rehabilitation of the farmers, and has played a very important role in creating a positive image of politics in the minds of the youth. He enjoys reading books on history and politics, which enable him to track social change, an understanding of which makes for effective governance.
Abhishek Chaubey is an Indian film director, writer and screenwriter. He directed the 2010 film, Ishqiya. Chaubey started his career as an associate director and co-writer with film director, Vishal Bhardwaj, starting with Vishal's debut Makdee (2002). He went on to assist him in all his subsequent films, and most notably co-wrote Vishal's trendsetting Omkara (2006) based on Othello and Kaminey (2009). His second film Dedh Ishqiya starring Madhuri Dixit, Naseeruddin Shah, Arshad Warsi, Huma Qureshi and Vijay Raaz released on 10 January 2014. Chaubey did his graduation in English literature from Hindu College, New Delhi in the year 1998. He then moved to Mumbai to do a course in Film & Television Production from the Xavier Institute of Communications before taking a headlong plunge in the world of Hindi films.
She started out as a poet, with work appearing in leading journals, before publishing her first collection of poems, Street on the Hill, in 2006. The interconnected lives of three very different characters in 1990s' Shillong was the subject of her first novel, Lunatic In My Head, which went on to be shortlisted for the Crossword Fiction Award. Her latest work, The Cosmopolitans, a novel about the lives and times of a middle-aged art aficionado, has just been published, to rave reviews. She is currently books editor at The Caravan magazine and lives in Bangalore.
She is a bestselling Indian author and New Age Indian Classicist. Her highly acclaimed debut novel, Arjuna: Saga of a Pandava Warrior-Prince, was named in a poll conducted by Amazon India as one of the top 5 books in the Indian Writing category for the year 2013. She also authored the bestselling novel, Kamadeva: The God of Desire. Her third book, Shakti: The Divine Feminine is the definitive work on the Mother Goddess.
Devotion, perseverance and commitment have placed Aruna Mohanty as the finest among the dancers in the field of Odissi Dance, nurtured under the able guidance of Guru Gangadhar Pradhan. Her skill and versatility make her the recipient of many awards and accolades, including the Mahari Award, Sanjukta Panigrahi Memorial National Award and Central Sangeet Natak Akademi Award. During her tenure as the Vice-President of Odisha Sangeet Natak Akademi, Aruna made valuable contribution in developing and executing the cultural policy of Govt. of Odisha.
Asit Mohanty is known as a writer, editor and critic who has handled dailies, magazines and tabloids in the capacity of the editor. The 57-year-old post graduate in Odia with specialisation in modern literature has been awarded the Sahitya Akademi Award for Translation for Adhyaya Ekavimsa, in 1988, and the Odisha Sahitya Akademi Award for Translation for Bapu Mo Maa in 2008. Mohanty wove his literary world around the books his mother brought as a part of her bridewealth. ''That treasure-trove whetted my appetite for reading and turned me into a writer. I owe it to my mother for what I am today.''
Chandrahas Choudhury is the author of the novel Arzee the Dwarf (HarperCollins, 2009), which was shortlisted for the Commonwealth First Book Award and selected by World Literature Today as one of "60 Essential Works of Modern Indian Literature in English". It was also published in German and Spanish editions. He also writes literary criticism and his book reviews appear in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal. He's edited an anthology of Indian literature called India: a Traveler's Literary Companion (Whereabouts Press, USA; HarperCollins, India), and since 2011 has also been the Fiction & Poetry editor of the monthly magazine The Caravan.
Debasis Panigrahi writes in Odia, which has been accorded the status of a classical language of India. So far, he has published nine collections of short stories, seven novellas published in three collections and one novel. He is also a reputed lyricist and has penned popular lyrics for audio and video albums, television and cinema. His stories figure in the anthologies of best Odia stories brought out by Kendra Sahitya Akademi and Odisha Sahitya Academy. He has bagged a host of literary awards including Odisha Sahitya Academy Award for short stories for 2002, Young Writer's Award given by the prestigious Gangadhar Rath Foundation in 2007, Kadambini Galpa Samman given by the popular Odia magazine Kadambini in 2009 and the Odisha Book Fair Award in 2012.
Divya Prakash Dubey also known as DP is India's first 'Hinglish' writer. He is an engineer from College of Engineering Roorkee and MBA from Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, Pune. An engineer & an MBA this combination has been going on for far too long to bring a refreshing picture in our minds. The author of two bestsellers, Terms and Conditions Apply & Masala Chai, DP has also authored poems, short stories, radio stories and screenplays.
At the forefront of Indian theatre today, Feroz Abbas Khan is recognised as much for exploring new forms, as for bringing Hindi theatre, mainstream recognition. In a career spanning more than two decades, he has directed some of India's finest acting talent, both from stage and cinema. The Lincoln centre and the United Nations in New York, the Memorial Hall-Stanford University, the Universal Studios Amphitheatre in Los Angeles, the Waterman's Arts Centre in London and the Durban Playhouse in South Africa are some of the theatres he has performed at. His English theatre production of Mahatma vs Gandhi created a sensation wherever it was staged and earned rave reviews from national and international media.
Imtiaz Ali is an Indian film director and writer. He was born and brought up in Jamshedpur.
He had his early education in St. Michael's High School, Patna and later in D.B.M.S. English school, Jamshedpur. He was a basketball player and was involved in theater from middle school. Later he attended Hindu College at the University of Delhi where he completed his bachelor's degree in English Literature. He was a founder member of IBTIDA, The Dramatics Society of Hindu College (still in progress). Thereafter he moved to Mumbai.
In 2005, he made his directorial debut with the film Socha Na Tha. However, it was his second film Jab We Met (2007) that brought him success and fame. His 2009 film Love Aaj Kal gained much critical success, and was declared a super hit at the box office. His movie Rockstar (2011) was also a commercial success and created hysteria in the youth. He has won several of awards including Filmfare, Stardust, IIFA, ZEE Cine award. With his last movie, which released in February 2014 Highway, he started his production company named Window Seat Films.
He is currently working on his next film titled TAMASHA, with Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone, which is scheduled to release on 27th November 2015.
Jairam Ramesh is an Indian economist and politician belonging to Indian National Congress. He is a Member of Parliament representing Andhra Pradesh state in the Rajya Sabha since June 2004. In July 2011, Jairam Ramesh was elevated to the Union Council of Ministers of India and appointed Minister of Rural Development and Minister (additional charge) of the new Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation. He has also served as the Indian Minister of State (Independent Charge) at the Ministry of Environment and Forests from May 2009 to July 2011. He has authored the books Making Sense of Chindia, Kautilya Today: Jairam Ramesh on a Globalising India.
Contemporary Indian painter and sculptor Jagannath Panda creates intricate art that reconciles the mythical and technological, reflecting on India's transition in an era of intense urbanisation. He records the tensions brought about by social change, often humanising animals to become actors in his ambiguous worlds which hover between reality, metaphor and dream.
Educated at Ravenshaw College, Cuttack and Merton College, Oxford, Jatindra K Nayak is Professor of English, Utkal University. He collects and reads autobiographies in Odia and is translating the Sarala Mahabharat into English. He won the Hutch-Crossword Book Award in 2004 and is a member of the advisory board, Dhaka Translation Centre. He has also been appointed a member of the Raja Rammohan Ray Library Foundation by Government of India. His English Translations of Odia Classics have been published by University of California Press, Oxford University Press and Penguin Books.
Mani Rao is the author of nine poetry books and two books in translation including Bhagavad Gita (Fingerprint, 2015) and Kalidasa for the 21st Century (Aleph Books, 2014) which is a Finalist in the Lucien Stryk Translation Prize. Her latest poetry book is New & Selected Poems (Poetrywala, 2014). Says The Oxford Companion to Modern Poetry (2nd Edition, 2013) on the poetics of her Gita: "Rao's version of the Bhagavad Gita unpacks the original Sanskrit with a range of avant garde techniques—in prosody, diction, mise-en-page and lineation —rendering a new translation of the well-known philosophical text unlike any before it."
It might sound convenient to call Nikhil Sachan an engineer from IIT BHU or perhaps a management-graduate from IIM - Kozhikode. Both his books, Namak Swadanusar and Zindagi Aais Pais comprise of tales ranging from childhood fantasies to exploring the darkness of human existence, tales that will make you nostalgic, that will tell your story that will shock you and those, that will take you to your favorite places. In a scenario when Hindi literature has been declared almost dead, Sachin's stories were widely appreciated by both critics and readers. Rated as 'Remarkable Hindi Authors of 2013' by BBC and 'Best Literary Minds' by Infibeam, Sachan has been the talk of the town since his debut.
Nilmadhab Mohanty has extensive experience in public service, which he served with distinction both at the national and international levels. In the mid-1970s, as the Deputy Commissioner of the undivided and sprawling Sambalpur district, he handled the delicate law and order situation and giving a push to the effective implementation of the local development works and drought relief measures. As Secretary to the Chief Minister of Odisha during 1986 to 1989, Mohanty exhibited tact, expertise and knowledge in coordinating administrative and policy action at the highest levels of the state government. For his professional attainments, he was selected by the Vienna-based UN Specialized Agency UNIDO (United Nations Industrial Development Organization) as its Managing Director in 1997.
Priya Kapoor began her career in journalism with The Indian Express. During this time she wrote a weekly column on Delhi called Delhi Upclose which was published the city section of the paper, Delhi Newsline. She worked at the academic publisher Routledge in London for two years before joining Roli Books ten years ago. In her time at Roli Books she has commissioned and edited both mass-market successes such as Dongri to Dubai by Hussain Zaidi as well as award winning books such as Taj Mahal Foxtrot by Naresh Fernandes.
Born in Nainital Pushpesh Pant, totally obsessed by food, was schooled at home and later graduated from DSB Government College (Agra University). He has postgraduate degrees in History, Law and International Relations. He has taught at Delhi University and Jawaharlal Nehru University for over four decades and lectured at many other universities. Pant is the author of India Cookbook, Gourmet Journeys in India, Food Path and some other books on food, travel, culture and international relations.
Rakesh Khanna was born in Berkeley, California in 1972. He later moved to Chennai, where he founded Blaft Publications in 2008. The small independent press first made a name for itself by bringing out English translations of bestselling pulp fiction authors from Tamil, Urdu, and Hindi. In 2012, Rakesh commissioned and edited the first English translation of a Hausa-language soyayya novel from West Africa, Sin Is a Puppy That Follows You Home by Balaraba Ramat Yakubu, an Islamic pulp romance novel with elements of black magic.
Ravi Shankar Etteth was born in 1960 in Palakkad, Kerala. His first short story was published in 1992 as a last addition to the Penguin Book of Horror Stories. It was followed by a collection of short stories dealing with the supernatural in 1996, The Scream of the Dragonflies. His first novel The Tiger by the River, about a man searching for the bones of his grandfather who was a Holocaust victim, appeared in 2001. It was published in nine languages including Serbian. His next two novels, The Village of the Widows and The Gold of Their Regrets, appeared in 2002 and 2007 respectively. Both were crime novels. Etteth has written two books on Kerala too He has been a political cartoonist for over 30 years and worked as a graphic designer for over a decade. His interests are crime fiction, historical fiction set in the Indian medieval ages, the Elizabethan age, Chinese imperial times and the Holocaust. His most recent work Book of Shiva was published in 2014. He is also a senior political columnist.
She has contributed to the Illustrated Weekly of India, Shankers Weekly and Handel Manuel's radio programmes on AIR. Associated with national radio and national television since its inception in Madras, Radhakrishna scripted Doordarshan's Beyond the Storm, which won The Transtel West German Award for the best documentary for Doordarshan.
Children's Cookbook of the Year. Annapurni is her recent book that has been published by Roli Books in an unusual format, like an old scrap book which covers traditional food of various Tamil communities. Radhakrishna is a craft activist and is actively involved with the Crafts Council of India. She serves in Educational Trusts and is founder-chairperson of Udhavi, that serves the ignored elderly.
Sachidananda Mohanty is professor and former head, Department of English, University of Hyderabad. He is the recipient of several national and international awards including those from the British Council, the Salzburg, the Katha and the Fulbright. He has to his credit 26 books in English and in Odia including D.H. Lawrence Studies in India; Writers' Workshop; Lawrence's Leadership Politics and the Defeat of Fascism; Academic Foundation; Understanding Cultural Exchange; Literature and Culture; Travel Writing and the Empire; Katha, 1898-1950: A Lost Tradition, Gender and Cultural Identity in Colonial Orissa; and Sri Aurobindo: A Contemporary Reader.
Sanjeev Sanyal is an economist, environmentalist and best-selling author based in Singapore. His books include Land of the Seven Rivers: A Brief History of India's Geography, The Indian Renaissance: India's Rise After a Thousand Year's of Decline and The Incredible History of India's Geography, all published by Penguin. He has also published over 150 articles, essays and columns on a wide range of topics. In 2014, he was given the inaugural International Indian Achievers Award for contributions to Literature. He was recently elected a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, London and is currently working on a history of the Indian Ocean. Sanyal is also a leading international economist and is currently the Global Strategist and Managing Director of Deutsche Bank, one of the world's largest banks.
Santosh Kumar Tripathy of Utkal University, Bhubaneswar has been teaching Odia literature to students at the post graduation level since the past 27 years. With a keen interest to write features, criticism, short stories Tripathy has been widely read through his published prose, poetry and criticism. Tripathy has written 34 books in Odia, two books in English and more than 500 literary articles both in Odia and English, among which are Odia Byakaran Kalana, Bichitra Kabitwa, Bibhabana Baichitra, Bimarsh Bignaha, Nirmiti Nirman, Tulyadehi and Sanjoga Anubidhi.
Satyarth's debut novel The Emperor's Riddles released in 2014, and became a best-selling thriller. Described as 'a book that opened a different avenue for budding writers' by the New Indian Express, the thriller takes its readers on a trail of cryptic riddles connected to the royal secret of an ancient Indian Emperor. The book earned him acclaim from writers like Amish Tripathi and Ashwin Sanghi and comparisons with Dan Brown. His short stories have won the British Council Writers Circle Prize and also featured in the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. His latest story Elixir was published in Penguin's anthology Something Happened On The Way To Heaven – 20 Inspiring Real Life Stories.
Shankkar Aiyar is a prominent India-based journalist, analyst and author. His path-breaking book Accidental India: A History of the Nation's Passage through Crisis and Change has fetched him national acclaim as a public intellectual. Aiyar, 53, specialises in the interface of economics and politics. He has authored a study on India's Socio-Economic Fault Lines, his investigation on 25 years of political corruption, Smoking Guns, is part of an anthology on Indian journalism. He has been a Wolfson Chevening Fellow at Cambridge University where he studied the Lifecycles of Emerging Economies. A columnist, empanelled expert on television, Aiyar is invited to decode India's political economy for audiences at home and abroad. Aiyar is currently working on demography, emigration and implications for the next economy.
Shinie Antony has written four short story collections - The Orphanage For Words, Barefoot and Pregnant, Séance on a Sunday Afternoon and Planet Polygamous - and the novels When Mira Went Forth and Multiplied and Kardamom Kisses. She has compiled the anthologies Kerala, Kerala, Quite Contrary and Why We Don't Talk. Co-founder of the Bangalore Literature Festival and director of the Bangalore Business Literature Festival, she won the Commonwealth Short Story Asia region prize in 2003 for her story A Dog's Death. She has studied at St Teresa's College, Kochi, and the Indian Institute of Mass Communication, New Delhi, and worked with Mid-Day, The Economic Times and The Financial Express. Her latest work is an Amar Chitra Katha novel, A Kingdom for his Love.
Shovon Chowdhury is a Delhi-based writer whose blog, India Update has over 200,000 hits. He is the creator of The Trilokpuri Incident, which is trying to understand an event that no one can remember. He is also the entire reporting staff of The Investigator, which digs for the truth, so you don't have to. He has recently edited the Secret Diaries of Manmohan Singh, Aged 82 3/4th. His first novel, The Competent Authority, was finalist for a wide variety of prizes. It has also been the subject of two PhD theses, one creative writing course, and several unauthorized theatrical adaptations .His new book, Murder With Bengali Characteristics, is set in a near-future Calcutta occupied by China.
Somak Ghoshal is a Managing Editor with HarperCollins Publishers India, where he acquires and commissions books across several genres, especially literary fiction and non-fiction, general fiction and non-fiction, crime, business and translations. This year he is publishing authors such as Abeer Y. Hoque, Keki N. Daruwalla and Nilanjana Roy. He was previously literary editor at Penguin Books India, where he published into the Hamish Hamilton and Viking imprints.
Sudip Sharma is the screenwriter of the recent box office and critical hit, NH10. He has previously been nominated for 'Best Screenplay' at the New York Indian Film Festival for his Indo-Tibetan indie 'Semshook'. His upcoming film will be the highly anticipated 'Udta Punjab', a movie set against the backdrop of the drug crisis in Punjab. Prior to it all, he did his MBA from IIM, Ahmedabad.
Sujit Mahapatra is the Co-Founder of Bakul Foundation, a movement for volunteerism in Odisha. He designed and taught a Specialization in Children's Literature to MA students of English at Ravenshaw University. He translates from Odia to English and that includes Pranabandhu Kar: Two Plays. Mahapatra still dreams of change, and works towards it with Bakul Foundation. One of the missions of the organization is to promote reading and creativity among children, and has started a library movement in the state, and is getting into publishing picture books in Odia.