Young sensation on the flute, JA Jayant is a renowned Carnatic flautist hailing from a family of eminent musicians. He was initiated into the world of music at the age of five by his grandfather and guru flute maestro late TS Sankaran. Jayant is an artiste of national and international repute with major solo performances in international festivals such as Darbar Festival; Milapfest; Museum Rietberg, Zurich; DUCTAC auditorium, Dubai; John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington DC; Cleveland Thyagaraja Festival, Sydney Festival, Siri Fort, Delhi; Shanmukhananda Sabha, Mumbai; Madras Music Academy, Chennai, to name a few. Jayant's virtuoso fingering and flute-blowing technique to present his music beautifully even in the very difficult lower octaves on the bass and double-bass, thick-walled bamboo flutes with perfect pitching and excellent tonal quality have won him lasting appreciation from rasikas, connoisseurs, senior musicians and his co-artistes. Flute JA Jayant has performed over 1,600 concerts all over the globe since the age of seven, of which, some are collaborations with musicians like Pt Ronu Majumdar, veena player Rajhesh Vaidhya, Shehnai and Ashwani Shankar, mandolin player Rajesh, pianist Anil Srinivasan, to name a few.
Ragavan Manian is a techie, educator and musician. He is an alum of IIT Madras (BTech EE), University of Virginia (MSEE) and Indian School of Business (MBA). He has headed technical teams in several chip and networking high–tech companies in the Bay area and India. Most recently he was the member of the founding team of an edu-tech start-up at IITM Research Park. He currently works as an independent educational consultant and musician. Ragavan’s formal voice lessons commenced at the age of seven under Guru and aunt Tenkasi PK Rajammal. He learned the art of Pallavi singing under Guru Pallavi T Narasimhachari, started training under Padma Vibhushan Dr M Balamurali Krishna from age 11. He studied violin under Guru Kanchi Janardhanam, debuted at the Music Academy, Krishna Gana Sabha and MFAS (age 13), won the coveted CCERT Senior Scholarship for musical training in 1990 (at age 15). He performed at the Indian Parliament House, New Delhi with Guruji Dr Balamurali Krishna and Pt Hariprasad Chaurasia in 2015. He was awarded the Dr M Balamurali Krishna Award for musical excellence, Vizag Andhra Pradesh, 2017 and the Chennai Award for Music, 2019. He served as a consultant in Indian Music at global universities and educational institutions and gave several Vocal and saxophone solos in the USA and Singapore. He was the vocalist and was the lead actor as Sant Tyagaraja Swami in Endaro Mahanu Bhavulu, a film by Bombay Gnanam. He has been music composer and lyricist for various music, dance and drama productions and a Graded All India Radio Artist as well
Since 2017, Muppavarapu Venkaiah Naidu has been serving as the 13th Vice-President of India. He is also the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha. Previously, he was the minister of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, Urban Development and Information and Broadcasting in the first cabinet of the Narendra Modi government formed in 2014. Under the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government, he was the Union Cabinet Minister for Rural Development. Naidu is also an author and has documented his life as the Vice-President in a series of books. Moving on...Moving forward: A Year in Office; Listening, Learning and Leading, his book on his second term as the Vice-President and Connecting, Communicating, Changing was all about his third year in the office. He counts reading, educating and motivating people as his hobbies. It all started in 1973–74 for Naidu who was back then the President of the Students' Union of Andhra University and came into the spotlight with the Jai Andhra Movement of 1972. He was also the President of the Youth Wings of Janata Party and rose through the ranks slowly and steadily. Naidu became the National President of the Bharatiya Janata Party in 2003.
Subramanian Swamy is an Indian politician, economist, and statistician who serves as a nominated Member of Parliament in Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the Indian Parliament. Swamy has served as a member of the Planning Commission of India and was a Cabinet Minister in the Chandra Shekhar government. Earlier in November 1978, Swamy was a member of the Group of Eminent persons and was called to Geneva, Switzerland to prepare a report of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) on Economic Co-operation between Developing countries (ECDC). Swamy also simplified trade procedures and formulated a new export strategy which became the forerunner of trade reform adopted subsequently. In 1994, Swamy was Chairman of the Commission on Labour Standards and International Trade by former Prime Minister P. V. Narasimha Rao. He also serves as chairman of the Board of Governors of the SCMS Group of Educational Institutions in Kerala. He has written on foreign affairs of India dealing largely with People's Republic of China, Pakistan and Israel. He was nominated to Rajya Sabha on April, 26 2016
A writer, diplomat and politician, Dr Shashi Tharoor has been a Member of Parliament in the Lok Sabha from the Thiruvananthapuram constituency since 2009. Before his sojourn into politics in India, he was an Under-Secretary General for Communications and Public Information at the United Nations and was India's pick to run against Ban Ki-Moon for the post of the General Secretary of the United Nations. His career at the UN began as a staff member of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Geneva in 1978 and in the three decades he spent at the UN, he also acted as the Director of Communications and Special Projects and Executive Assistant to then Secretary-General Kofi Annan. He has also served as the Minister of State for External Affairs between 2009 and 2010 and Minister of Human Resource Development between 2012–2014. A graduate of St Stephen's College, Dr Tharoor was the youngest to receive a doctorate in International Relations and Affairs from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University at the age of 22. He has also been a frequent columnist in various renowned publications both national and international. A consummate writer, Dr Tharoor has authored 23 titles, both fiction and non-fiction.
Manish Sisodia is serving as the Deputy Chief Minister, Delhi since February 2015. He also holds the portfolios of Education, Higher Education, Training and Technical Education, Finance, Planning, Tourism, Art, Culture and Languages, Information and Publicity and other key departments. Prior to being elected to the Legislative Assembly of Delhi in December 2013, Sisodia was a social activist and journalist as well as a member of the National Executive Committee of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). It was following the creation of the Aam Aadmi Party in late 2012, that Sisodia became a member of its Political Affairs Committee. Sisodia's first brush with activism came when he launched his own non-governmental organisation (NGO), Kabir, in Delhi's Pandav Nagar, to campaign for the right to information. This brought him in contact with the Parivartan organisation, where he met Arvind Kejriwal and was among those selected in 2006 to help draft the Right to Information Act of 2005. Later, Sisodia became an early participant in the popular movement of 2011 that sought a Jan Lokpal bill. He was involved in drafting the first version of the anti-graft legislation and was jailed for his involvement in protests. He has been passionately working for revolutionary changes in the education system.
Dr K Ponmudy is the current Higher Education Minister of Tamil Nadu. He held the same portfolio from 2006 to 2011 as well. Born in T Edaiyar in the Villupuram district, Dr Ponmudy holds a Bachelor's degree in Law, a Master's degree in History, Political Science and Public Administration and a Doctorate in Political Science. He is an alumnus of the Annamalai University. Before stepping into mainstream politics and joining the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, Dr Ponmudy was a professor in a government college in Villupuram. He has been elected to the Tamil Nadu assembly five times. He has been the Minister for Health and for Transport and Highways before. He has also authored a book titled Dravidian Movement in India and Black Movement in the U.S.A.
Dr Jitendra Singh is the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Science and Technology and Earth Sciences. He is Minister of State for Prime Minister’s Office; Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions; Department of Atomic Energy and Department of Space. He is also the national executive member of the Bharatiya Janata Party and Chief Spokesperson for the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. Known for his work on diabetes and endocrinology. Dr Singh has also been a professor and clinical practitioner. He has also been a consultant and has authored eight books, including Monograms on Diabetes and World Book Fair best seller, Diabetes Made Easy. He as well as a newspaper columnist along with publishing several chapters in leading textbooks of medicine for Post Graduate Course (Medicine). Tales of Travesty is the syndicated weekly column that he runs. He is the ex-chairman for the National Scientific Committee Diabetes and the Research Society for the Study of Diabetes in India. Dr Singh pursued his MBBS from Stanley Medical College, Chennai and MD from Government Medical College, Jammu. In the general elections of 2014 and 2019, he won the Udhampur seat for the 16th and 17th Lok Sabha.
Prof M Jagadesh Kumar obtained his MS (EE) and PhD (EE) degrees from the Department of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras. He did his post-doctoral research at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada. He is a Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering at IIT Delhi. Prof Kumar is presently the Chairman of the University Grants Commission (UGC) and Professor of Electrical Engineering at IIT Delhi. He is the 12th Vice-Chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi (Jan 2016 – Feb 2022). He still teaches. He held the NXP (Philips) Chair Professor established at IIT Delhi by Philips Semiconductors, Netherlands. He received the 2013 Award for Excellence in Teaching (in the large class category) from IIT Delhi. Prof Kumar works in the area of nanoelectronic devices, nanoscale device modeling and simulation, innovative device design and power semiconductor devices. He has published extensively in the above areas with three books, four book chapters and more than 250 publications in refereed journals and conferences. Several patent applications have been filed based on his research. Prof Kumar is on the editorial board of several international journals including IEEE Journal of the Electron Devices Society and is Editor-in-Chief of IETE Technical Review. He was an Editor of IEEE Transactions on Electron Devices for nine years.
Dr CN Ashwathnarayan is currently serving four portfolios under the Government of Karnataka, including the Minister of Education, the Minister of Science and Technology, the Minister of Information and Broadcasting, and the Minister of Skill Development. Dr Ashwathnarayan is an elected representative in the state's Vidhan Sabha from the Malleshwaram constituency, as a candidate for the BJP and currently serves as the Vice-President of the party in the state from the Bangalore district. Before joining active politics in 2004, he was the founding president of the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences Employees Association in 2000. He also started the Padmashree Charitable Trust and Shushrutha Group of Institution which offers courses in science and technology, ayurvedic sciences and paramedics. He is an MBBS graduate of the Kasturba Medical College, Mangaluru, from the batch of 1995. Dr Ashwathnarayan has also served as the Deputy Chief Minister of the State under the BS Yediyurappa government and has acted as the Chairman of Karnataka's COVID-19 task force during the pandemic.
Dr Sudhanshu Trivedi, who is from Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh), is basically an engineer and has a PhD in Mechanical Engineering. He has served as Faculty/Professor in several Indian universities and is now a political leader, thinker and analyst. Presently, Trivedi is a Member of the Rajya Sabha and National Spokesperson of BJP. He was Information Adviser to the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh and Political Advisor to the National President of BJP. Trivedi has attended and spoken at multiple international forums and conferences on politics, culture, emerging global scenarios, science and technology, and even on Yoga and philosophy in countries like the USA, Japan, China, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, Qatar and so on. He is an ardent speaker on the issues of India's national policy, polity, society and particularly, the Ideological aspects of BJP. Trivedi was invited to the International Relations & Strategic Affairs Program for Parliamentarians at Princeton University, New Jersey, USA in 2018. He was invited by the Government of Singapore as a young political leader in 2014. He was invited by Central Committee of the Communist Party of China as a young political leader from South Asia in 2011. He was also invited by ACYPL (American Council for Young Political Leaders) during their presidential election year in 2008.
A Saravanan, Spokesperson of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), Tamil Nadu is a lawyer who has been the official spokesperson for the party since 2015. He is the lead partner in Saravanan And Partners, a boutique law firm based in Chennai that advises on constitutional, civil, criminal, family and commercial arbitration and mediation matters. Saravanan was one of the candidates from Tamil Nadu to attend the Legislative Fellows Program organised by the US State Department in the year 2012 to learn about the electoral process of the US. It was the year when Barack Obama contested for his second term. His experience during this programme has allowed him to focus on democracy and development related activities. Ever since, Saravanan has worked in many capacities that govern the conduct of Tamil Nadu legislative elections. He is a regular at the US Consulate panel discussions and works closely with the cultural team. He has also served as a Public Prosecutor in the office of the Public Prosecutor, High Court of Madras. He has handled many sensitive matters for the government. He also writes for few of the leading newspapers on current affairs of the country.
Prof Vallabh is Professor of Finance and National Spokesperson, Indian National Congress (INC). He is a certified Financial Risk Manager (GARP, USA), Fellow (Lok Sabha), Chartered Accountant (ICAI, India) and Company Secretary (ICSI, India). He has a PhD (UoR, India) and has pursued his MCom (Gold Medalist) and LLB. Prof Vallabh is Ex Director, The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India; Ex Professor – Management Development Institute (MDI Gurgaon) and a whole lot more. He has worked with the National Institute of Bank Management (NIBM, a Reserve Bank of India undertaking), Pune; XLRI - Jamshedpur, MDI Gurgaon and The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI, New Delhi). He has over 15 years of industry and academic experience. The professor has published more than a dozen research papers in academic journals and presented papers in many national and international academic conferences. He was honoured with Best Young Researcher Award – 2004 jointly by ICWAI and IAA and has also won the best paper award in XXV All India Accounting Conference. The professor had also provided his major contribution to improving the effectiveness of Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (SSA, a flagship programme of the Government of India). He had also acted as a subject expert and Chairperson in various interview panels constituted by the Ministry of Urban Development (Government of India), Government of Jharkhand and State Bank of India for recruitment of officers.
Prof TG Sitharam obtained his BE (Civil Engineering) from the University of Mysore; Master’s from Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru in 1986 and PhD from the University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada in 1991. Presently he is the Director of the Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati, Assam since July 2019. He also holds the position of Director (additional charge) at Central Institute of Technology Kokrajhar, Assam. He is a Senior Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore and he has served IISc for the last 27 years. As the Director of IIT Guwahati, the professor was responsible for creating five new schools and five new academic centres at IIT Guwahati during 2020-21. Presently he is also an Executive Council member of AICTE and Chairman, Eastern Zonal committee of AICTE. Prof Sitharam is a member of the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB). He was the former Chairman, Research Council, CSIR-Central Building Research Institute (CBRI), Roorkee. Presently, he is the President of the Indian Society for Earthquake Technology and the International Association for Coastal Reservoir Research (IACRR). He has filed for five patents, executed more than 120 consulting projects and has two start-up companies to his credit.
Founding Director of IIT Mandi, Timothy Aloysius Gonsalves joined the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, IIT Madras as an Assistant Professor in 1989, rose to Professor and Head of the Department. He is the Founding Director of IIT Mandi in Himachal Pradesh (2010-2020). He was also the Chair of the JAB Subcommittee that increased female BTech students in IITs from 8 per cent to 20 per cent. He was the Vice-Chairman, HP State Higher Education Council from 2014 to 2017. Prof TA Gonsalves is also the Co-founder of the TeNeT Group of IIT Madras, founding Director of NMSWorks Software, n-Logue Communications, Nilgiri Networks and the IIT-Madras Rural Technology Business Incubator (IITM RTBI). The professor's interests lie in education for engineers of the future. He is also keen on the design and performance of computer and telecom networks, with emphasis on innovative and low-cost product and technology development for Indian and international industry. Fostering software development in small towns and rural areas is also his passion. Prof TA Gonsalves serves as a Consultant to SBI Core Banking System, Mobile Payment Forum of India, SEBI Technical Advisory Committee and many more. He has also led or advised the software system design for product/technology development in the telecom area.
Prof Bhaskar Ramamurthi was Director IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) Madras during 2011-21 and his expertise is in the area of wireless communications. After obtaining his BTech in Electronics Engineering from IIT Madras in 1980, Prof Ramamurthi went on to pursue his MS in the year 1982 and PhD in the year 1985, both in the field of Electrical Engineering, from the University of California, Santa Barbara. During his doctoral studies, he was awarded the University of California Regents Fellowship. After his doctorate, he worked at AT&T Bell Labs for two years and then, joined IIT Madras as a faculty member in the Department of Electrical Engineering in the year 1986. He served as the Dean of Planning at IIT Madras before taking over the role of director in September 2011. Modulation and coding for mobile communications, wireless communication networks and design and implementation of wireless local loop systems are the fields of interest of the professor. He is also one of the Founding Members of the Telecommunications and Computer Networking Group (TeNeT) group at IIT Madras; principal architect of corDECT wireless local loop system and Broadband corDECT Wireless DSL System, which has been deployed in India and 15 countries and has been a Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering since 2000. From January 2015, he was elected as a Fellow of IEEE.
Raadhika Sarathkumar is an established business icon and an eminent television and cinema personality. She holds a degree in Home Science and is currently the Managing director at Radaan Mediaworks. She received her education from India and the United Kingdom. She made her cinematic debut in 1978 with the Tamil movie Kizhakke Pogum Rail. Over the past several decades, Raadhika has gone on to work in over 300 films in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Hindi and Malayalam. She has won a National Film Award for producing a Tamil film which was directed by a debutant called Meendum Oru Kaathal Kathai in 1985. She has received the Filmfare Awards South and Tamil Nadu State Film Awards on several occasions. She won the Filmfare South Lifetime Achievement Award for her overall contribution to Tamil cinema in 2014. In her role as a TV producer, she has been at the helm of several hit primetime shows on the small screen.
Shraddha Srinath is known widely as an actress who has worked prominently in Kannada, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam films. She comes from a strong educational background as her mother is a school teacher. She completed her schooling from Army School in Secunderabad and then went on to pursue legal studies at Bangalore Institute of Legal Studies. After her graduation, Srinath worked as a real estate lawyer in Bengaluru. She debuted in movies with the 2015 Malayalam movie, Kohinoor. Her role in debut Kannada movie U Turn in 2016 received widespread critical acclaim and also fetched her Filmfare Award for Best Actress in Kannada. The movie even went on to be premiered at the New York Indian Film Festival. She has acted in 20 films so far including a Bollywood movie. For her role in the Kannada movie Operation Alamelamma, she won the Critics Award for Best Actor at the Filmfare Awards. She also won accolades at the Critics' Choice Film Awards for her portrayal in the Telugu film, Jersey.
Gaur Gopal Das is an Indian lifestyle coach, motivational speaker and former HP engineer. He is a member of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON). Das was born in Pune, Maharashtra, India. He has a diploma in Electrical Engineering from Cusrow Wadia Institute of Technology, Pune and a degree from the College of Engineering, Pune. He worked as an electrical engineer at Hewlett Packard for a brief period, before leaving the company in 1996 to become a lifestyle coach. In 2018, he published the book Life's Amazing Secrets and received an honorary doctorate from the Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT). He was reported as having over 3.9 million YouTube followers with more than 177 million views.
Arif Mohammad Khan is an Indian politician and a former cabinet minister in the union of India who is currently serving as the Governor of Kerala. He has held several portfolios ranging from Energy to Civil Aviation. He is the second Governor of Kerala to be appointed by the ruling Narendra Modi government at the center after P Sathasivam. Khan was born in 1951 in Bulandshahr. He was educated at Jamia Millia School, Delhi, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh and Shia College, Lucknow University. He started his political career as a student leader. He was the President of Aligarh Muslim University Student's Union in the year 1972-73 and also it's honorary Secretary a year earlier (1971-72). He contested the first legislative assembly election from Siyana constituency of Bulandshahar on Bharatiya Kranti Dal party's banner but was defeated. He became a member of the legislative assembly of UP in 1977 at the age of 26. In 2004, he joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and unsuccessfully contested the Lok Sabha election as a BJP candidate that year from Kaisarganj constituency. Khan quit the BJP in 2007, but started supporting the current Narendra Modi led NDA government from 2005 onwards, and was appointed as the Governor of Kerala subsequently in 2019. He has written various books and given multiple lectures. He is also associated with various think-tanks.
Makarand R Paranjape has been Professor of English at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) since 1999. He has also served as Director, Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla. He has published over 50 books, 175 academic papers/book chapters and thousands of op-eds and popular articles. His latest book is JNU: Nationalism and India’s Uncivil War, just released by Rupa. Paranjape has over 35 years of experience in undergraduate/postgraduate teaching in the USA and in India. He started his career as a teaching assistant at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA (1980-1986); he was a Fellow, Lecturer, and Reader at the University of Hyderabad (1986-1994); Associate Professor, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT, New Delhi (1994-1999) and Professor of English, Jawaharlal Nehru University from 1999 onwards. Paranjape has been the Homi Bhabha Fellow for Literature; Shastri Indo-Candian Research Fellow, University of Calgary, Canada; IFUSS Fellow, University of Iowa, USA; Australia India Council Fellow; Shivdasani Visiting Fellow, Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, University of Oxford; Visiting Senior Research Fellow, Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore and the Andrew Mellon Fellow at the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Centre, the University of Texas at Austin, to name a few.
Prior to his appointment as Chief Economic Advisor to the Government of India, Dr V Anantha Nageswaran was a writer, author, teacher and consultant. Dr Nageswaran has written a weekly column for a leading financial daily for fifteen years on Tuesdays, since 2007. He has co-authored four books: The Rise of Finance – Causes, Consequences and Cures; Derivatives; Can India Grow? and The Economics of Derivatives. Dr Nageswaran has taught at several business schools and institutes of management in India and Singapore. He was the Dean of the IFMR Graduate School of Business and a distinguished Visiting Professor of Economics at Krea University. He was one of the founders of Aavishkaar Venture Capital Fund and the Takshashila Institution. He has served on the Academic Advisory Board of DAV Schools in Tamil Nadu and the Indian School of Public Policy. He was also a part-time member of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister of India from 2019 to 2021. In his corporate career spanning seventeen years from 1994 to 2011, Dr Nageswaran was a Currency Economist at the Union Bank of Switzerland, Head of Research and Investment Consulting in Credit Suisse Private Banking in Asia, Head of Asia Research and Global Chief Investment Officer at Bank Julius Baer.
Gautam Chikermane is a writer and the vice president at Observer Research Foundation (ORF). His areas of research are economics, politics and foreign affairs. His last book was 70 Policies that Shaped India (ORF, 2018). Earlier, he has held leadership positions in some of India's top newspapers and magazines, including Hindustan Times, Indian Express and Financial Express. He serves as a director on the board of CARE India, was the new media director at Reliance Industries Ltd, and vice chairman on the board of Financial Planning Standards Board India. A Jefferson Fellow (Fall 2001), he is a student of Sri Aurobindo, the Mahabharata and dhrupad music.
The Chairman of the All India Council for Technical Education, Sahasrabudhe. He has held several important Academic, Research and Administrative positions at Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, Tata Consulting Engineers, North Eastern Regional Institute of Science and Technology (NERIST), Itanagar (Arunachal Pradesh) and IIT Guwahati. He also served as Director, College of Engineering, Pune (CoEP) since 2006 on deputation from IIT, Guwahati prior to joining as AICTE Chairman. As an academician and researcher in NERIST and IIT Guwahati, and as an administrator in the capacity of Director, CoEP, he has taken up several new initiatives for Academic, Curricular & Co-curricular activities, Entrepreneurship, Research and Good Governance.
Pavan Allena started his entrepreneurial journey at the age of 19 and is currently the Founder and CEO of Metamorphosis Edu, one of the world’s first enterprises to introduce entrepreneurship at the high school level. Pavan pursued Engineering in Computer Science from VIT Vellore and is a business enthusiast with a strong academic background. With a knack for entrepreneurship since his early days of college, Pavan also founded FLEETalytics in 2015. The initial years at VIT also saw Pavan develop an app called Track My Kid, which harnesses the Uber model to help parents track their children and their school buses. Metamorphosis Edu works by presenting ideas and problem statements from established companies for students to develop, analyse and solve them in a bid to nurture entrepreneurial culture in school. This gives young minds an ecosystem to build a penchant for business right from their school days, instead of grappling with the start-up world after college. It also serves the purpose of encouraging students to be job creators instead of job seekers right from the start. Pavan has been awarded Forbes Best People Manager, Young Asian Entrepreneur by Asian One and has been featured among Edex's 40under40 stars.
Pulkit Jain is the Co-Founder and Head of New Initiatives and Culture at Vedantu, one of India's leading online tutoring companies which enables students to learn live with some of India's best-curated teachers. Jain, along with his friends Vamsi Krishna and Anand Prakash started their first educational venture called Lakshya in 2006. Lakshya, was subsequently acquired by MTEducare in 2012. Post the acquisition, these three friends founded Vedantu. Jain has been instrumental in innovating and exploring product and tech at Vedantu for more than ten years now. Pulkit, along with his team, built Vedantu’s proprietary platform W.A.V.E (Whiteboard Audio Video Environment) for the teaching and learning of students. Vedantu is the only EdTech player which has a built-in house platform for students. Recently, he has taken over as the head of new initiatives and culture at Vedantu. Jain has created scalable web products reaching 40 million users monthly on an average. A designer and a painter at heart, you can find him at his creative best designing all abstract stuff at Vedantu office. He also enjoys mentoring and guiding young entrepreneurs through his own entrepreneurial journey. Pulkit is an alumnus of IIT-Roorkee and has been a teacher for more than 10 plus years.
Bengaluru-based historian Dr Vikram Sampath is the author of six acclaimed books: Splendours of Royal Mysore: the Untold Story of the Wodeyars; My Name Is Gauhar Jaan: The Life and Times of a Musician, Voice of the Veena: S Balachander ‐ A Biography and Women of the Records. His latest book is the two-volume biography, Savarkar: Echoes from a Forgotten Past and Savarkar: A Contested Legacy from Penguin Random House India, both of which have gone on to become national best sellers. Dr Sampath was recently conferred the honour of being elected as a Fellow of the UK's prestigious Royal Historical Society. He was awarded the Sahitya Akademi's first Yuva Puraskar in English literature and the ARSC International Award for Excellence in historical research in New York for his book on Gauhar Jaan. The book has also been adapted for the theatre as a play titled Gauhar by Lillette Dubey and is being adapted into a Bollywood film by Ashutosh Gowariker. Dr Sampath was among the four writers and artists to be selected as a Writer-in-Residence at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in 2015. He has a Doctorate in history and music from the University of Queensland, Australia and was a Senior Research Fellow at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi. He is also an Aspen Global Leadership Fellow and an Eisenhower Global Fellow 2021. An engineer/mathematician from BITS-¬Pilani and an MBA in Finance from SP Jain Institute of Management and Research, Mumbai, Dr Sampath is also a trained Carnatic vocalist. He has established the Archive of Indian Music, India's first digital sound archive for vintage recordings; is the Founder-¬Director of the Bangalore Literature Festival, IndicThoughts Festival and ARTH - A Culture Fest.
Prof Rajeev Gowda is a former Member of Parliament and a former Professor, Indian Institute of Management - Bangalore. He is Chairman of the Congress party's Research Department. Currently, he is the national spokesperson for the Indian National Congress (INC). He is currently the Advisor for Bridge India, a London-based non profit think tank. Gowda was Professor of Economics and Social Sciences and the Chairperson of the Centre for Public Policy at the Indian Institute of Management (IISc), Benagluru and taught courses. He is a former member of parliament in the Rajya Sabha and has served as the Director of the Central Board, Reserve Bank of India (RBI). After completing his PhD, Gowda went on to do post-doctoral research at the University of California, Berkeley where he was awarded the John M Olin Post-doctoral Fellow in Law and Economics in 1991. He was also a visiting scholar at the Centre for Jurisprudence and Social Policy- Law School (Boalt Hall), University of California. Prof Gowda has been active in politics since his return to India in 2000. In 2013, Prof Gowda was appointed as the National Spokesperson of the All India Congress Committee (AICC). Prof Gowda was one of the contenders for the Bangalore North constituency in the Congress’ Primaries for the 2014 general elections.
Manish Tewari is a Lawyer and a Member of Parliament representing Sri Anandpur Sahib in Punjab in the 17th Lok Sabha. He earlier represented the Ludhiana Parliamentary Constituency in Punjab in the 15th Lok Sabha. He served as the Union Minister of State Independent Charge in the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India. Tewari was the Spokesperson of the Cabinet and the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government. He was a Permanent/Special Invitee to the Union Cabinet as well as a Member of various Cabinet Committees such as Economic Affairs, Investment Parliamentary Affairs and numerous Empowered Groups of Ministers. Currently, Tewari is the Senior National Spokesperson of the Indian National Congress (INC). He has been the Spokesperson of the Indian National Congress for the past 12 years, from 2008 onwards and General Secretary of its Foreign Affairs Department. Tewari has also served as a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the South Asia Centre of the Atlantic Council, a Washington DC-based Think Tank. He also served as an Honorary Advisor to the Observer Research Foundation (ORF). He has served on the Standing Committees of Law & Justice, Defense & Foreign Affairs and the Joint Parliamentary Committee that examined the Issues pertaining to the Telecom Sector from 1994-2009 as well as the Parliamentary Consultative Committee of Defense. Tewari currently serves on the Standing Committee of Finance & Joint Committee of Parliament examining the Data Protection Bill as well as the Parliamentary Consultative Committee of Defense.
A businessman through and through, Gautam Adani chose to drop out of Gujarat University in a bid to build his own empire. All of 24, he established what is now known as Adani Enterprises, under the Adani group, whose foundation was the trade of agriculture and power commodities, which gradually expanded into areas such as textiles and metals. It was in 1994 that Adani first found his footing in port operations, by landing a contract from the Government of Gujarat for the Mundra Port which is the largest private-sector port in India. It has also been presented with the Port Authority Award (2006) by Lloyd's List for the Best Port in Middle East and Indian subcontinent. Adani owns a 74 per cent stake in Mumbai International Airport and has also won the world's largest solar bid by the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) worth $6 billion. the Adani Foundation was established in 1996 and works towards supporting education, health and sustainability, and livelihood development in over 2,250 villages. The foundation also runs seven not-for-profit schools in Gujarat, Chattisgarh, Rajasthan and Odisha. Adani has been recognised with the Excellence in Management Award by the Chief Minister of Gujarat in 2007
Montek Singh Ahluwalia has served the Planning Commission of India as its Deputy Chairman from 2004, supervising the Eleventh and the Twelfth plans that prioritised sustainable and inclusive growth. These are subjects he has also extensively explored in his many articles and publications. His expertise as an economist is reflected in the fact that he has held several senior positions such as Special Secretary to the Prime Minister, Commerce secretary, Secretary Department of Economic Affairs in the Finance Ministry and Finance Secretary. Before his role as a civil servant in India, Dr Ahluwalia served the World Bank, where he began his career as the youngest division chief, as the head of the Income Distribution Division in the World Bank's Development Research Centre. A Padmashree Awardee, Dr Ahluwalia was the first director of the International Monetary Fund's Independent Evaluation Office. His book, Backstage: The Story Behind India’s High Growth Years, published in February 2020, is an account of the transformation that the country's economy has seen. With the world currently reeling under the threats of climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr Ahluwalia has been made a member of the high-level advisory group formed jointly by IMF and the World Bank.
Dr PTR Palanivel Thiagarajan is the Minister for Finance & Human Resources Management, Tamil Nadu. He is the MLA for Madurai Central Constituency in the 15th and 16th Legislative Assemblies of Tamil Nadu. In June 2017, Palanivel Thiagarajan was appointed as the (founding) Secretary of the newly formed IT Wing of the DMK. He is also a designated spokesperson for the party, generally focusing on economic, budget and state/central finances and policy matters. Dr Rajan previously worked as an International Investment Banker for many years, in several trading, market sales and management roles at Lehman Brothers (largely in New York) and Standard Chartered Bank (mostly based in Singapore) – where he last served as Senior Managing Director, Financial Markets, overseeing the sales of several fixed-income products globally. Prior to banking, his career spanned academia, agriculture, consulting, manufacturing and research.
Mr. T V Narendran is the CEO & Managing Director of Tata Steel Limited. As the CEO & MD, he has overseen the organic and inorganic growth of Tata Steel over the last few years. This includes the Kalinganagar greenfield expansion and the acquisition of Bhushan steel and the steel business of Usha Martin. He has over 32 years of experience in the Mining and Metals industry. Mr. Narendran is currently on the Board of Tata Steel Limited. He is the Chairman of Tata Steel Europe and Tata Steel Long Products Limited. He is also the Chairman of the Board of Governors of XLRI Jamshedpur. He is a member of the Executive Committee and the Board of the World Steel Association. He was the co-chair of the Mining & Metals Governors Council of the World Economic Forum from 2016 to 2018. He is the President of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), the President of the Indian Institute of Metals, and a fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering. Mr. Narendran is a Mechanical Engineer from the National Institute of Technology (NIT) Trichy and did his MBA from the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Calcutta. He is a recipient of Distinguished Alumnus Awards from both NIT Trichy and IIM Calcutta. He is a Chevening Scholar and has also attended the Advanced Management Programme in INSEAD, France.
Bibek Debroy is an economist and was educated in Ramakrishna Mission School, Narendrapur; Presidency College, Kolkata; Delhi School of Economics and Trinity College, Cambridge. Presently, Debroy is Chairman, Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister (EAC-PM) and President, Indian Statistical Institute (ISI). Debroy has worked in Presidency College, Kolkata (1979-83), Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics, Pune (1983-87); Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, Delhi (1987-93); as the Director of a Ministry of Finance/UNDP project on legal reforms (1993-98); Department of Economic Affairs (1994-95); National Council of Applied Economic Research (1995-96); Rajiv Gandhi Institute for Contemporary Studies (1997-2005); PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (2005-06); Centre for Policy Research (2007-15) and Member, NITI Aayog (2015-19). He has authored/edited several books, papers and popular articles and has also been a Consulting/Contributing Editor with several newspapers. Debroy was awarded the Shriram Sanlam Award for Financial Journalism (in 2013), Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award of India (in 2015), DLitt (Honoris Causa) by KIIT University; Lifetime Achievement Award by US-India Business Summit (in 2016), Skoch Challenger Golden Jubilee Award (in 2017), Lifetime Achievement Award by Prestige Institute of Management and Research (in 2018) and Bharatiya Manavata Vikas Puraskar by Power Brand (in 2018).
KK Shailaja is a Member of the Legislative Assembly and former Minister of Health, Social Justice and Woman and Child Development of Kerala representing the Communist Party of India (Marxist). Before entering the political fray, Shailaja graduated from Pazhassi Raja NSS College, Mattanur with a degree in Chemistry. She then taught physics at a high school in Kannur for seven years. In the Kerala Legislative Assembly, Shailaja started by representing Kuthuparamba and Peravoor in the years 1996 and 2006, respectively. As Health Minister in 2016, her commitment and leadership during the Nipah and COVID-19 outbreaks was internationally recognised. In June 2020, she was honoured by the United Nations for her service in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic and spoke on the occasion of the United Nations Public Service Day. She was awarded the CEU Open Society Prize for 2021 in recognition of her social commitment to public health services. In the Kerala Legislative Assembly election 2021, Shailaja won with the largest margin ever (over 60,000 votes) in the history of the state's elections to the Legislative Assembly.
A cardiac surgeon of repute and a successful entrepreneur, Dr Shetty is a highly-respected luminary for his ingenious ideas for reforms in the healthcare sector. His visionary leadership to make quality healthcare affordable for all has drawn global recognition. Treading the path of economies of scale to bring down the cost of healthcare delivery, Narayana Hrudayalaya has been an interesting case study for the likes of Harvard University. In association with the Government of Karnataka, Dr Shetty pioneered Yeshaswini, a very inexpensive micro health insurance scheme benefitting more than 3.4 million rural poor. Dr Shetty is the current Chairman, Board of Governors, Indian Institute of Management, Bengaluru. He has also served as a member of the Board of Governors of Medical Council of India and Representative of the President of India in the Board of Governors of Indira Gandhi National Open University. The Government of India, state governments, trade bodies and global policy think tanks invite Dr Shetty regularly for discussions on healthcare policies. He was part of the International Advisory Group, a strategic advisory platform, invited by Japan Centre for International Exchange to address the global health agenda under Japan’s G-20 leadership during 2019-20. A strong advocate of technology for efficient healthcare delivery, Dr Shetty takes deep interest in creating and developing software products and applications to achieve time and cost efficiency while minimising clinical errors in healthcare delivery.
Dr Santishree Dhulipudi Pandit was appointed as the Vice-Chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in February 2022. Earlier, she was a Professor Department of Politics and Public Administration, Savitribai Phule Pune University, Pune. After pursuing her PhD in International Relations and MPhil in International Relations, both from JNU, and a Post-doctoral Diploma in Peace and Conflict Studies from Uppsala University, Sweden, Prof Pandit began her teaching experience as a Political Science lecturer at Goa University in the year 1988. From 1985 to 1990, she has been a Member of the Advisory Committee, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government Of India; from 2010 to 2013, she was the Executive Committee member of Indian Association for American Studies (IAAS), from 2017 to 2020 she was the Member of Governing Council, ICSSR and has essayed many such roles. She is also a Founding Member of the Center for Studies in International Relations (CSIR), Delhi, a think tank dedicated to Indo centric ideas. Under Prof Pandit's supervision, 24 students have submitted their PhD theses and eight students have submitted their MPhil dissertations. She has also published several articles in leading dailies. She teaches Theory of International Relations, India’s Foreign Policy, Major Thinkers in the West and other such papers to postgraduate students.
Dr Vinay Prabhakar Sahasrabuddhe is an Indian politician and Member of Parliament of India representing the state of Maharashtra in the Rajya Sabha. Dr Sahasrabuddhe is a postGraduate in English Literature and a PhD in Political Science, both from the University of Mumbai. Dr Sahasrabuddhe is the President of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) — India’s soft power promotion establishment. In July 2020, Dr Sahasrabuddhe was appointed as the Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Human Resource Development. He is Director of the Public Policy Research Centre, New Delhi and the Vice-President at Rambhau Mhalgi Prabodhini (RMP), a unique institution of which he was the Director-General for over two decades.
Prabha Dixit is the Principal, Primary School, and IB PYP (International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme) Coordinator of Akshar Arbol International School (AAIS), a two-campus K-12 school in Chennai. Being the first IB-PYP school in Chennai, Dixit led the school towards the IB PYP Authorisation in 2014 and the first give-year review of the programme in 2018. She has been the Co-Chair of the PYP South India and Sri Lanka Network in 2018 and works with PYP schools in the region to support the growth in their understanding of the PYP programmes. Prabha holds a Master's in Business Systems from Monash University, Australia, a BEd from IGNOU, New Delhi and a Post Graduate Diploma in Education Leadership from CEMD – SOL. She also holds a Diploma in Spanish from the Government of Mexico and has taught English and Spanish to several professionals and expatriates in Mexico and India. A Council Member of the Tamil Nadu WICCI Entrepreneurship Council, Dixit works with a group of dynamic women to support the learning and growth of women employed/self-employed in various fields Prior to becoming an educator, Dixit spent close to a decade in Technology Consulting at Deloitte, Tata Consultancy Services and Mercer Consulting, at which time, she taught Languages and the Performing Arts, in other settings.
Ms Shobha Raman has been associated with the field of education for three decades now and is currently serving as the Principal of Vidya Mandir Senior Secondary School, in Mylapore, Chennai. A prolific scholar, she has three master's degrees and an MPhil to her name. She was one of the four teachers selected from all over India to teach one semester at the Brattleboro Union High School in the United States as a Fulbright teacher exchange scholar in 2005-06. She also has various awards for teaching to her credit, such as the Lady Kalyani Sivasami Iyer Best Teacher Award, 2021. In fact, she was named the Best Teacher under the Principal category by the CBSE for the academic year 2019-20. Additionally, she won the Silver award for Excellence in Teaching, from the Rustom Irani Foundation in 2004. Apart from being a teacher, she has also been involved in the development of curricula for pedagogy advancement at various levels. Ms Raman has been serving as a member of the Subject Expert Panel to discuss and formulate the marking scheme for class 12 Chemistry AISSCE since 2019 and is a resource person for the Center of Excellence, CBSE for the Chennai region.
Sheela Rajendra hails from a family of teachers and as the daughter-in-law in the household of educationist Dr YG Parthasarathy, she has imbibed the ideals and values critical to teaching and learning. Rajendra has been associated with the PSBB Group of Schools for more than three decades, where her career started as a part-time music teacher. She is currently serving as the Dean and Director of the institution. With her ideas for hands-on learning, the fusion of the arts and academia and stress-free learning for children, she has introduced various creative initiatives for her school students. Rajendra has been a part of the residential School Management Leadership Program conducted by IIM, Ahmedabad and is a Governing Council Member of the Research Science Initiative – Chennai (RSI-C), which is an initiative of the PSBB Group of Schools in collaboration with IIT Madras. Rajendra has also been awarded the Woman Achiever of 2012 by the Indo-American Society, the Lady Kalyani Sivaswami Ayyar Best Teacher Award as well as the Vocational Excellence Award from Rotary Club of Chennai Coastal. She was invited to the International Visitor’s Leadership Program (IVLP) by the State Department of USA.
Minoo Aggarwal is the Founder Principal of DAV Public School, Velachery, Chennai which was began in the year 1990. The school that began as a humble K-5 School in Phase-1 stands today is a K-12 school housed in a state-of-the-art building with 3,123 students on its rolls. Aggarwal is a postgraduate in Child Development and English. She has also completed the Cambridge International Diploma for Teachers and Trainers from Cambridge University. She had an excellent academic record throughout her education and was the recipient of several merit certificates and scholarships. Aggarwal is the Founder Chairperson of Chennai Sahodaya School Complex, which forms an important link between CBSE and its affiliated Schools. She has played a pivotal role in executing several assignments on behalf of CBSE. She is the Resource Person for value education, gender sensitivity and inclusive education, assessment of speaking and listening skills and has conducted a series of workshops and training programmes for principals and teachers. Currently, she is the Chennai City Co-ordinator for 105 schools to act as a key functionary for all CBSE examinations and assignments and Kanchipuram City Co-ordinator for Central Teachers Eligibility Test.
Malvika Iyer is a bomb blast survivor. She lost both her hands and severely damaged both her legs, causing nerve paralysis and loss of sensation. Despite being bedridden for two years, she appeared for her exams, topped her Class X and scored 97 per cent with just three months of preparations. Today, Malvika is an award-winning disability rights activist with a Doctorate in Social Work. She is an international motivational speaker, a corporate trainer, a TEDx speaker, a model for accessible fashion, an MC and a global shaper (an initiative of the World Economic Forum). She serves on the advisory board of the India Inclusion Foundation. Her powerful and uplifting speeches and her pioneering work have bought her numerous accolades and acclaim across the globe. Recipient of the National Award Nari Shakti Puraskar, the highest civilian honour for outstanding contribution to women’s empowerment from the President of India, Malvika has eight years of experience in motivational speaking and diversity training. Malvika has delivered keynote speeches, conducted workshops and seminars on resilience, breaking barriers, growth mindset, positive self-talk, body positivity and overcoming adversity. She has raised awareness on global issues such as disability rights, gender equality, child rights, mental health, universal design and accessibility in educational institutions, private corporations, NGOs and youth forums around the world.