Naveen Patnaik is the longest-serving Chief Minister of Odisha and only the third CM to win five consecutive terms. That's not all though. He is also a writer and had for the most part of his youth been away from both politics and Odisha. He finished his Bachelors from Delhi University. But after his father Biju Patnaik's demise, he entered politics in 1997 and a year later founded the Biju Janata Dal. He won the state election in alliance with BJP and became Chief Minister. The mild-mannered, educated CM of Odisha has fans across the state and beyond.
Chetan Bhagat is an Indian author and columnist. He featured in Time magazine's list of World's 100 Most Influential People in 2010. Bhagat graduated in mechanical engineering at IIT Delhi and completed an MBA at IIM Ahmedabad. He started his career as an investment banker but left it after a few years to pursue his passion for writing. He has written nine novels and three non-fiction books. His first novel, Five Point Someone, was published in 2004. His novels have been listed as bestsellers. Five of Chetan Bhagat's novels have been adapted into Bollywood films as well. He has also written the scripts for Bollywood films.
Wajahat Habibullah was the chairperson of the National Commission for Minorities. Prior to this, he held the position of the first Chief Information Commissioner of India. He was an officer of the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) from 1968 until his retirement in August 2005. He was also Secretary to the Government of India in the Ministry of Panchayati Raj.
Pushpesh Pant is a renowned Indian academic, food critic and historian. He retired as a Professor of International relations from Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi and is one of India's leading experts on International Relations as well as Indian cuisine. As a columnist, he has written for a number of major publications like Forbes, Open, Outlook, Times of India and The Tribune. His book, India: The Cookbook, was named by The New York Times as one of the best cookbooks of 2011. He was also featured in an interview in The Australian. The Government of India awarded him the Padma Shri in 2016.
Edward Luce is an English journalist and the Financial Times chief US commentator and columnist based in Washington, D.C. Before that he was the Financial Times' Washington bureau chief, and South Asia bureau chief based in New Delhi. Luce is the son of Rose Helen (Nicholson) and conservative politician Richard Luce. His first cousin is actress Miranda Hart. His first job was as a correspondent for The Guardian in Geneva, Switzerland. He joined the Financial Times in 1995 and initially reported from the Philippines, after which he took a one-year sabbatical working in Washington, D.C. as speechwriter for Lawrence Summers, then U.S. Treasury Secretary (1999–2001) during the Clinton administration.
Mira Nair is an Indian-American filmmaker based in New York City and the director of the BBC series A Suitable Boy which was on the headlines recently. Her production company, Mirabai Films, specializes in films for international audiences on Indian society, whether in the economic, social or cultural spheres. Among her best-known films are Mississippi Masala, Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love, The Namesake,Monsoon Wedding, and Salaam Bombay!, which received nominations for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film and the BAFTA Award for Best Film Not in the English Language.
Sudha Murty is an Indian engineering teacher, Kannada, Marathi and English author as well as a social worker. She is also the Chairperson of the Infosys Foundation. She is married to co-founder of Infosys, N R Narayana Murthy. She is the chairperson of the Infosys Foundation and a member of the public health care initiatives of the Gates Foundation. She has founded several orphanages, participated in rural development efforts, supported the movement to provide all Karnataka government schools with computer and library facilities. She got "Best Teacher Award" in 1995 from Rotary Club at Bengaluru (erstwhile Bangalore). Murthy is best known for her social work and her contribution to literature in Kannada and English.
Karishma Upadhyay is the author of the biography, Parveen Babi: A Life.
A long time film journalist and aficionado who loves to travel, Karishma has spent the last two decades writing for a number of publications including People Magazine, Hello, The Hindu, Forbes and The Telegraph. When not writing, she is obsessed with baking, Kanye West, fantasy fiction and indulging her wanderlust at every available opportunity.
Aseem Chhabra is a film journalist, freelance writer and film festival programmer in New York City. He has been published in The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Outlook, Mumbai Mirror, Rediff.com; has a regular column in The Hindu; and has been a commentator on Indian cinema and popular culture on NPR, CNN, BBC, as also ABC’s Good Morning America, Associated Press and Reuters. Aseem is the festival director of the New York Indian Film Festival and the Silk Screen Asian American Film Festival in Pittsburgh. He is also the voice of Shadow Puppet #1 in director Nina Paley’s award-winning animated film, Sita Sings the Blues.
Satyarth Nayak is an Indian author and screenwriter, known for his bestselling novel The Emperor's Riddles and for scripting Sony's historical television epic Porus. The Emperor's Riddles turned out to be a bestselling thriller with the media calling it "a hit with young readers".
Shashi Tharoor is an Indian politician, writer and former international diplomat who has been serving as Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha from Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, since 2009. He was formerly Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and contested for the post of Secretary-General in 2006.
Rajeev Mantri is the founder and managing director of India-focused venture capital firm Navam Capital. Prior to founding Navam, Rajeev worked as a venture capital investor at New York-based Lux Capital, focusing on investments in energy, water and nanomaterials. Rajeev is widely published columnist on technology, investing, venture capital and entrepreneurship in India and has written for The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Mint, The New York Times, The Times of India, MIT Technology Review, BioSpectrum and other leading publications. In 2018, Rajeev was selected Raisina Young Fellow by the Observer Research Foundation.
Harsh Gupta Madhusudan is a public markets investor who believes that the 2020s will be the "Long India" decade. He earlier worked for Bain & Co. in London and Houston focusing on due diligence for private equity and hedge fund clients amongst other cases. He is an INSEAD MBA and Dartmouth College alumnus (Economics major). He has co-authored two books: Derivatives, A New Idea Of India.
Pavan K Varma is a former Indian Foreign Service officer and was an adviser to the Chief Minister of Bihar, Nitish Kumar, with cabinet rank. With effect from June 2014 he was a Member of Parliament until July 2016. With effect from June 2014 he was a Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) until July 2016. He was the National General Secretary and National Spokesman of the Janata Dal (United).He was expelled from JD(U) in January 2020 for opposing CAA.
Odia writer and columnist, Gourahari Das received the Central Sahitya Akademi Award (2012) for his book Kanta O’ Anyanya Galpa, which comprises 16 stories offering a glimpse into rural Odisha. Das received the State Sahitya Akademi Award for his contribution to Odia literature in 2000.
Author of 'Ardhasatya' and 'Casino' that took the literary circuit by storm, Saqti Mohanty is one of the most influential young Odia poets and writers today. While he teaches Engineering Physics in GITA Engineering College in Bhubaneswar, poetry is his passion. Some of his poetry collections in Odia are 'Pooni Barsha', 'Seemaheena', 'Laghuchapa', 'Samayaku Nayak Kari' and Rekha Na'thibaa Gote Haata'. Apart from teaching physics and writing poems, Saqti conducts workshops on creative writing and drama and is also a motivational speaker.
Sahitya Akademi awardee Asit Mohanty has not just written but also edited and translated a number of Odia books. His book Adhyaya Ekavimsh (1994), which is a translation of 21 short stories of 21 Jnanpith Awardess, got him the Sahitya Akademi Award for translation. His book Bapu Mo Maa, is again a translation of Manu Behn Gandhi’s Memoir on Mahatma Gandhi got the Odisha Sahitya Akademi Award for Translation in 2008.
The former director of the Odia language, literature and culture department, Bijay Kumar Nayak, has several books of poetry, novels and essays to his credit. Besides working towards promotion of Odia language and literature, he has written books and edited literary magazines on Odia culture.
Prabhu Chawla is an Indian journalist. He was born in Dera Ghazi Khan, Punjab, British India. He is alumni of Deshbandhu college University of Delhi. He started his career as an economics lecturer in Delhi University. He is the Editorial Director of The New Indian Express, a Chennai-based newspaper in India.
Kaveree Bamzai is an independent journalist with more than 30 years at India Today, The Indian Express and The Times of India. She was Editor of India Today and most recently of Robb Report India. She was the first, and so far, only woman editor of India Today, where she was employed till January 2019.
Sudhir Srinivasan is the Entertainment Editor of The New Indian Express. Previously, he has worked at publications like The Hindu and The Times of India, and over the years, has interviewed many film personalities, including Mani Ratnam, Shankar, and Kamal Haasan. He also writes about his reflections on cinema for mainstream media. He is also a writer of fiction, he’s presently working on a novel.