Aditya Sondhi is a Senior Advocate and practices law in the High Court of Karnataka and the Supreme Court of India. He has authored a book of non-fiction – Unfinished Symphony – with Penguin (India) and has been a winner at the Deccan Herald Short Story Competition. Aditya got his PhD from the Mysore University for his thesis on ‘The Interface Between the Army and Democracy: India and Pakistan Compared.’ He writes and speaks on matters of national security from time to time and is the Founder-Managing Trustee of the General K.S. Thimayya Memorial Trust.
Ajit Balakrishnan is the founder and CEO of rediff.com, a pioneering Internet company with its head office in Mumbai and which trades on New York’s NASDAQ stock market. He is a graduate of the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta, where he is presently Chairman of the Board of Governors. He has written The Wave Rider.
Ajitha G.S. has been an editor in various media and formats for the past 17 years. She is currently senior commissioning editor, HarperCollins Publishers India.
Altaf Tyrewala has worked as a cashier, a telemarketer, a clerk and an instructional writer. He has written No God in Sight, Ministry of Hurt Sentiments and Engglishhh.
Andaleeb Wajid is the author of several novels in the past 7 years. Her Young Adult novel When She Went Away has been shortlisted for The Hindu Young World GoodBooks Award 2017. She has recently published a romance novel, Will the Oven Explode. A fulltime writer, she is a creative writing facilitator at Nutcracker Workshops.
Andie De Arment
Andie De Arment joined the U.S. Consulate General in Chennai as Cultural Affairs Officer in August 2014. A career member of the U.S. Foreign Service, Andie comes to India from the U.S. Interest Section in Havana, Cuba, where she worked as the American Citizen Services Chief. She has previously served as Information Officer in Karachi, Pakistan and Public Affairs Officer in Surabaya, Indonesia. Andie was nominated for the U.S. Department of State’s highest public diplomacy honor, the Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Public Diplomacy in 2011. A native of Northwest Pennsylvania, Andie holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations, a law degree (Juris Doctor), and Certificate in International Trade and Development from The Ohio State University. Prior to joining the Department of State she lived and worked overseas in China, Poland, and Kenya.
Anil Srinivasan is a classical pianist who has created a unique and contemporary aesthetic of his own, marrying Indian music with the unmistakable influence of the West. His compositions are often structurally complex, but intuitive and moving to the listener.
As a game changer, his solo performances and renditions have been noted for the delicacy of his touch as well as their ability to connect instantly with listeners from across the world.
He often collaborates with some of the finest musicians from different styles and schools of music. These include top names in the current Indian classical scene as well as musicians from other parts of the world.
Winner of the coveted SNA award for creative and experimental music in 2010 (India’s top honours for musicians under the age of 35), Anil has performed in some of the most diverse venues in the world – from the UNESCO heritage site at Hampi, South India to the Queen Elizabeth Hall at the Southbank Centre, from the hills outside Ojai Valley, California to the Esplanade Recital Studios in Singapore.
Anjum Hasan’s latest book is the short fiction collection Difficult Pleasures. She is also the author of the novels Neti, Neti and Lunatic in my Head and the collection of poems, Street on the Hill. She has contributed to anthologies such as HarperCollins Book of Indian Poetry, The Popcorn Essayists: What Movies Do To Writers and 60 Indian Poets. Her book reviews, essays and travelogues are widely published. She is currently books editor at Caravan and lives in Bangalore.
Arnab Ray, better known as Greatbong, is one of India’s most widely read bloggers (http://greatbong.net). His first book “May I Hebb Your Attention Pliss”, was published by Harper Collins in 2010, his second book, The Mine, by Westland in 2012 and now his third book “Yatrik”, also from Westland Publishers, hits the stands in September. He is known for his sarcastic takes on the Indian film industry, Indian politics and society in general. He has written for several media outlets like the NY Times, Washington Post, Times of India, and the Hindustan Times. He is presently employed as a senior research scientist at the University of Maryland and resides in the suburbs of Washington DC.
Arshia Sattar’s translations of the Valmiki Ramayana (1996) and Tales from the Kathasaritsagara (1993) are published by Penguin Books as is her collection of essays on the Ramayana, “Lost Loves: Exploring Rama’s Anguish” (2011) which was short-listed for the Crossword Non-Fiction Award in 2012. She has also written three books for children, most recently, “Adventures with Hanuman” (Red Turtle, 2013). Her latest book, “The Mouse Merchant: Tales of Money in Ancient India” (Alan Payne, Penguin 2013) is a compilation of stories from Sanskrit texts about attitudes to money.
Arshia teaches classical Indian literatures at various institutions across the country and along with DW Gibson, is the Founder and Director of Sangam House, an international writers’ residency program located outside Bangalore.
Arthi Anand Navaneeth is a marketing professional who on weekends becomes the voice of Art’s Tales. It is here she brings together her love for stories, song, dance and of course, children. Have You Seen This? and Ranganna are her picture books from Tulika Publishers.
Arthur Dudney was born in the United States but has been visiting Delhi for much of his life. In Delhi: Pages from a Forgotten History (Hay House India, 2014) he shares his love for the city’s cultural history with non-scholars. He received his doctorate from Columbia University last year, and is currently a Junior Research Fellow at Oxford University.
Arun Maira is one of those rare people who has held leadership positions in both the public and private sectors, in India and abroad. He brings a unique perspective on how stakeholders can work together to develop a better society.
In his career spanning five decades, he has been a Member of India’s Planning Commission, Chairman of the Boston Consulting Group in India, CEO of Innovation Associates in the USA, and earlier served in leadership positions in the Tata Group.
A well-grounded thinker and writer, his books include Redesigning the Aerpolane: Reforming Institutions; Transforming Capitalism: Improving the World for Everyone; and Shaping the Future: Aspirational Leadership in India and Beyond.
Author, journalist and politician Arun Shourie has received several national and international awards, including the Padma Bhushan, the Magsaysay Award, the Dadabhai Naoroji Award, the Astor Award and the International Editor of the Year Award. Acclaimed as one of ‘World Press Freedom Heroes’ by the International Press Institute, a “Star of Asia” by Business Week and “Business Leader of the Year” by the Economic Times jury, he was a minister in the government of India 1998–2004. His books include Does He Know a Mother’s Heart? How Suffering Refutes Religions, We Must Have No Price, Worshipping False Gods, Falling Over Backwards: An essay against Reservations and against Judicial populism, The World of Fatwas or the Sharia in Action, Harvesting Our Souls and Hinduism: Essence and Consequence.
Aruna Nambiar is a writer and editor who grew up in Mumbai and now lives in Bangalore. After degrees in engineering and management, she worked in an international bank, before rekindling a lifelong passion for writing. Her essays, short stories and travelogues have been published in national newspapers and magazines and in the anthologies Curtains, The Itinerant Indian and Winners Vol. I. She also wrote the text for the coffee table book, Portrait: Kerala. Her first novel, Mango Cheeks, Metal Teeth, is a quirky, witty tale about coming of age and social attitudes and differences, set in small-town Kerala of the 1980s.
A founder member of the Alternative Law Forum (ALF), Arvind received his Bachelor’s degree in law from the National Law School of India University (NLSIU) in Bangalore followed by a Masters in the University of Warwick on a Chevening scholarship. He was actively involved in working on child rights and juvenile justice at the NLSIU Centre for the Child and the Law. He also taught courses at the NLSIU on human rights law and ideology, ethnic conflict, law, poverty and development. Arvind now works full time at ALF dividing his time between litigation on the criminal side and research and advocacy on sexuality and minority related issues.
Ashok Vajpeyi is a Hindi poet-critic, translator, editor and culture-activist and is a major cultural figure of India. With more than 13 books of poetry, 10 of criticism in Hindi and 4 books on art in English to his credit, he is widely recognized as an outstanding promoter of culture and an innovative institution-builder. At present he is the Executive Trustee of the Raza Foundation, New Delhi.
Asma Jahangir is the elected President of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan in 2011 and was twice elected as Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan. Asma is also a Director of the AGHS Legal Aid Cell, which provides free legal assistance to the needy and was instrumental in the formation of the Punjab Women Lawyers Association in 1980 and the Women Action Forum in 1985.
She was placed under house arrest and later imprisoned for participating in the movement to restore political and fundamental rights under the military regime in 1983.
She has authored two books and five papers. She has received honorary Doctor of Law degrees from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland, Queen’s University, Canada and Amherst College, USA. She has been the recipient of a number of international and national awards, among them the Ramon Magsaysay Award in 1995.
In 1998, Asma was appointed United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or arbitrary execution of the Commission on Human Rights and in 2004 she was appointed United Nations Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief of the Council of Human Rights.
She served as a leading figure in the campaign waged by the women activists against the promulgation of the controversial Hadood Ordinance and draft law on evidence. Moreover, she has defended cases of discrimination against religious minorities, women and children.
Bio coming soon.
Business Journalist with The Economic Times in the 1990s. Started ManagementNext, a monthly magazine for executives in 2004. Launched SustainabilityNext in 2013. Author of two books – Sushil Mantri – Big Bets, Big Rewards and C K Prahalad – Mind of the Futurist. Seeks to write more business biographies to tell more inspiring business stories. Will continue to promote the idea of ‘responsible business’ through his two e-magazines.
Bhawana Somaaya has been writing on Hindi films for over three decades and is the author of 12 books. Her last Talking Cinema released in 2013. She is currently the Film Editor at 92.7 BigFM does the film reviews and a biography show for the channel. She also writes weekly columns for The Indian Express, America and The Hans India. Somaaya is the only journalist visible on all the mediums – Radio/ Print/ TV/ Web.
Binalakshmi Nepram, born in Manipur, is a writer, civil rights activist and a humanitarian spearheading work on making women-led disarmament a movement and an issue that is meaningful to people’s lives. She is author of four books: “Poetic Festoon”, “South Asia’s Fractured Frontier”, “Meckley”,a historical fiction based on Manipur, and “India and the Arms Trade Treaty”. In 2004, Nepram co-founded India’s first civil society organization which is working on conventional disarmament issues – the Control Arms Foundation of India. And in 2007, in order to help thousands of women who are affected by gun violence in her home-state Manipur, she launched the Manipur Women Gun Survivor Network. She has represented Indian civil society in various women and disarmament meetings held at United Nations in New York. A recipient of the Dalai Lama Foundation’s WISCOMP Scholar of Peace Award,2008,Sean MacBride Peace Prize,2010; CNN IBN Real Heroes Award,2011, her team Manipur Women Gun Survivors Network won “Indian of the Year “Award in Special Achievement category same year. In 2013, London based organization Action on Armed Violence named Nepram as “100 most influential people in the world working on armed violence reduction”.
Binod Ghosal is a popular young writer of West Bengal. A journalist by profession, Binod regularly writes short stories, novels, features and film criticisms in the leading magazines and journals of West Bengal as well as other states of India and abroad.
Binod started writing after 2000 and within a very short time he made his space in modern Bengali literature, specially in the field of short stories. Many of his stories have been adopted into stage drama and or broadcast as radio plays. Binod is a recipient of Sahitya Akademi Yuva Puraskar 2011 for his first collection of short stories “Danawala Manush’. He was also honoured with Paschimbanga Bangla Akademi Award in the year 2014.
Brenton McKenna is a young indigenous writer/Illustrator from Broome, in the far North West of Australia. Ever since he can remember, Brenton has been passionate about art and telling stories. He first developed his love of comic books and this style of drawing when he was very young. Since then, Brenton has been immersed in the world of comic art, cartooning and graphic novels. He is inspired by the multicultural history of his hometown and draws on Aboriginal and foreign mythologies in his stories. Brenton studied visual arts for two years at Goldburn TAFE and in 2009 was one of twenty successful applicants to be awarded a highly sought after mentorship with the Australian Society of Authors. Brenton was a Deadly Award nominee in 2011, guest panelist at Dromkeen Literary Lunch for Graphic Novelists and winner of Kullarri NAIDOC award for Literature. UBBY’S UNDERDOGS is his first graphic novel.
Bio coming soon!
C V Ranganathan
Former Indian ambassador to China and France; co-author of India and China – The Way Ahead, Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Chinese Studies, New Delhi.
Chetan Bhagat is the author of nine books. These include seven novels—Five Point Someone, One Night @ A Call Center, The 3 Mistakes of My Life, 2 States, Revolution 2020, Half Girlfriend and One Indian Girl, and two non-fiction titles—What Young India Wants and Making India Awesome. His books have remained bestsellers since their release. Four out his five novels have been already adapted into successful Bollywood films and the others are in the process of being adapted. The New York Times called him the ‘the biggest selling English language novelist in India’s history’. Time magazine named him among the ‘100 most influential people in the world’ and Fast Company, USA, listed him as one of the world’s ‘100 most creative people in business’. He writes columns for leading English and Hindi newspapers, focusing on youth and national development issues. He is also a motivational speaker and screenplay writer. He quit his international investment banking career in 2009 to devote himself to writing and make change happen in the country. He lives in Mumbai.
Danish Sheikh graduated from NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad, following which he pursued a master’s degree at the University of Michigan Law School on a Michigan Grotius Fellowship. He works at the Alternative Law Forum conducting research and advocacy relating to Gender and Sexuality law and Free Speech. He is also collaborating on an anthologized novel titled Invisible Libraries due for publication by Yoda Press later this year.
In his own words – Born in Shillong, Meghalaya, a place very close to my heart for the excellent childhood spent in that now slightly defaced hill station. Studied in St Edmund’s School and College where sports and erratic reading took up most of my time. Graduated with honours in economics and later my masters in the same subject from Gauhati varsity. Took to writing fiction from an early age( while in school) and did a stint as the editor for the college magazine during 1975-76. After several jobs, including that of a salesman in Delhi and a teacher in a venture college later joined the Assam Civil Service in 1983 and inducted into the Indian Administrative Service in 2000. Presently posted a s The Secretary, Tourism and urban Development Departments, Assam I had earlier done my usual bureaucratic stints as a field officer. I travel a lot, primarily because, short as I am of the innate imaginative qualities required of a fiction-writer, the experience gathered from the mostly unplanned travelling is fodder for the whatever written works that I have managed to bring out. Have written over 60 short stories published in various magazines(First Proof, New Frontiers, etc) and newspapers( Sunday sections). In 2006, 2010 and 2014, Penguin India Ltd published A Bowstring Winter (novel), Luck (short story collection), Sons Of Brahma (novel), respectively. Received the Katha Award for Fiction in English in 1996. Am also a proud founder-member of the vibrant North East Writers’ Forum, established in 1997, comprising a disparate writers, poets from Arunachal, Assam, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Tripura and Sikkim. The Forum promotes original writings in the English language as well as promoting translations. Our present membership exceeds 350.
Dominique Varma studied Classics and Literature at the Sorbonne, and has also a M.A. in Indian philosophy and Sanskrit. She teaches at the University of Lille, in the North of France, and for the last twenty years has gone back and forth between India and France. She co-edited a collection of essays entitled Memories of the Second Sex published by Somaiya Publications in 2000. Her first novelShifting Sands was published in English by Penguin India in 2004 and in French as Sables Mouvants by Kailash Editions Paris in 2005. Dominique Varma’s second book of fiction After the Deluge has been published by Rupa in 2014
Dr. K. S. Pavitra
A danseuse par excellence, a renowned psychiatrist Dr. K.S. Pavitra hails from Shivamogga, the cultural city of Malnad. She is the second daughter of renowned psychiatrist Dr. K.R. Sridhar and noted writer Smt. Vijaya Sridhar. Dr. Pavitra completed her M.B.B.S at Mysore Medical College and Specialized in Psychiatry by obtaining M.D. from National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bangalore. Along with her academics Pavitra had the opportunity to study Bharatanatyam, Karnatic Vocal & Veena, Sanskrit & Kannada literature, Yoga and Kalaripayatt. Tough Pavitra completed preliminary exams in all these areas with excellence, she chose Bharatanatyam as her passion. Pavitra’s artistry is the quintessence of the pristine purity of the much sought after Pandanallur School of Bharatanatyam. She was astutely trained with a hard apprenticeship under Karnataka Kala Tilaka Guru Dr. Vasundhara Doreswamy in Pandanallur School of Dance for more than 20 years.
Dr Dylan Coleman is of Kokatha (Gugatha) First Nation Australian Aboriginal and Greek ancestry. She lectures in Indigenous Health at the University of Adelaide in South Australia after completing her PhD at the same university. Dr Coleman’s thesis explores Indigenous narrative process and its capacity to recreate stories of trauma and loss as ones of survival and liberation, drawing on a range of theoretical discourses such as: narrative approaches, stand point, literary and critical race and whiteness theories; and including a range of Indigenous public health principles. Her experience is in community engagement within various Indigenous communities throughout Australia, and in South Australia in the area of public health, with a focus on substance misuse and building community capacity and resilience through community controlled approaches to health. The creative component of Dr Coleman’s PhD work, Mazin Grace, based on her mother’s childhood growing up on Koonibba Mission under oppressive colonial government policies including segregation of the 1940’s and 50’s was written in Aboriginal English and Kokatha language. This work won the Australian David Unaipon Indigenous Literary Award, was longlisted for the Stella Prize, (a prestigious Australian women’s literary award), and shortlisted for the Commonwealth Book Prize. Dr Coleman believes writing can be used as a tool of liberation, and writing in one’s own language can challenge oppressive colonial histories through to the present day, while empowering individuals and whole communities. Dr Coleman is also a political activist and has a keen interest in social justice issues including Aboriginal self-governance.
G Sampath is a writer and journalist based in Delhi. He is currently the social affairs editor at The Hindu. He was previously a columnist for Livemint. He was part of the launch team of Daily News and Analysis (DNA) in Mumbai and served as its books editor from 2005 to 2012. He is the author of How to Make Enemies and Offend People, a work of satirical non-fiction, and the editor of The Pleasure Principle, an anthology of erotic fiction. His collection of short stories, Autoplay, is forthcoming in 2017.
Odia poet, fiction writer, journalist and literary magazine editor, Gayatribala Panda has published seven collections of poems and her selected Odia poems translated into Hindi, named Dhoop ko rang. The anguish of a woman, social injustices and inequalities are the dominant themes of her poetry. She is Central Sahitya Akademi First Yuva Puraskar winner(Odia) for 2011. Among her several other honours and awards are State Youth Award for Poetry-1999-2000, Rajiv Gandhi Sadbhavana Award-2011 and Utkal Sahitya Samaj Yuva Kabi Samman-2010. She has participated in SAARC Young Writers Meet-2008 and Commonwealth Writers Meet-2010. As a poet she has been invited to literary conferences and festivals in various parts of India. Her work has been translated into several languages.
Born in 1938, Girish Karnad obtained his bachelor’s degree from the Karnatak University in 1958 and then proceeded on a fellowship to study at Oxford where he secured his M.A. degree in 1963. Karnad is internationally known as a playwright, but is also a highly talented film-maker, a versatile actor, an able cultural administrator, a noted communicator and a person of wide accomplishments and interests. Based on his serious explorations of folklore, mythology and history, the subject of his plays reflect the problems and challenges of contemporary life, and endeavour to forge a link between the past and the present. The creative intellectual that he is, he obviously views the subjects of his plays from his own perspective, develops them in the crucible of his own imagination and personal experiences, and employs them as a medium to communicate his own-independent and original-feelings, thoughts and interpretations.
Honours and awards: 1. Central Sangeeth Natak Akademi award for his play Hayavadana 2. Kamaladevi Chattopadhyaya award in 1978. 3. His play “Nagamandala” was premiered in Minneapolis in the USA. 4. Staged all over the world 5. Samskara won the best film award 6. Vamsha Vriksha got national and state awards 7. Visiting professor at the University of Chicago in 1987-88 8. Director of the Film and Television Institute of India 9. Chairman of the Central Sangeeth Natak Akademi 10. Jnanpith award
Works: 1. Hayavadana 2. Yayati 3. Tughalak 4. Anjumallige 5. Hittina Hunja Taledanda 6. Agni mathu Male 7. Tippuvina Kannasugalu 8. Translated his plays from Kannada into English 9. Translated his play Tughalak into German and Hungarian. 10. Director, actor and screenplay writer for many Kannada movies such as Samskara, Vamsha Vriksha, Kadu, Kanooru Heggadithi.
Grew up in a small gold mining town in Karnataka, went to college in Bangalore taught high school for a year and squeezed her way into journalism. Worked as a trainee for Hindustan Times Delhi and then at the age of 21 became a full-fledged reporter for Indian Express Bangalore…the first woman reporter in the city. Free-lanced for a long, long time, writing for a wide range of English language publications from different parts of the country. Her latest book of narrative journalism “Baby Makers: The Story of Indian Surrogacy” (Harper Collins 2014) the first ever comprehensive book on the subject has already received excellent reviews. Her other books are “Colour of Gold” a mystery novel set in an Indian gold mining town (Harper Collins in 2013), “Disappearing Daughters: the tragedy of Female Foeticide” (Penguin 2007)(translated into Marathi & Japanese), “Unbound: [email protected] (Penguin 2010) and “The Healing” a novel set in Chennai (Harper Collins 2008)
Professor Graham Welch holds the Institute of Education, University of London Established Chair of Music Education (since 2001). He is a past president of the International Society for Music Education (ISME) (2008 to 2014), elected Chair of the internationally based Society for Education, Music and Psychology Research and past co-chair of the ISME Research Commission of ISME. He holds Visiting Professorships at universities in the UK and overseas and is also a member of the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council Review College for music. Internationally, he has acted as a specialist external consultant on aspects of children’s singing and vocal development for UK and Italian government agencies, as well as for specialist research centres in the USA, Australia and Sweden. Publications number over 300.
H. N. Arathi
Arathi.H.N a media person/poet writes in Kannada language, lives in Bengaluru, India. She has 2 poetry collections, a play and 2 books of translation from English to Kannada. Arathi.H.N. has participated in National and International poetry and media festivals, including Slovenian literary festival, Europe. Her poems are translated into Malayalam, Tamil, English and Slovenian languages. She is a Senior Programme Executive working with the Government owned Television Media. She has two state awards for her poetry collections to her credit. A Quiz show on Kannada language and literature, called “THATT ANTA HELI” which is directed by her holds a record of longest running quiz show by Limca book of world records..completing 2500 episodes.
H. S. Shivaprakash
H. S. Shivaprakash is a well-known poet, playwright and translator from Karnataka. His translations and adaptations of Shakespeare are widely staged. He has also translated major European, Latin American and African poets into Kannada and some of the best-known Kannada and Tamil poets into English. He is the winner of the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for play-writing and four best book prizes of the Karnataka Sahitya Akademi for poetry and translations. A former editor of the translations journal Indian Literature, Shivaprakash is an honorary fellow of the School of Letters, University of Iowa, and a specialist in Indian devotional traditions. He is currently professor, Theatre and Performance Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.
Bio coming soon.
Harish Bijoor is a brand-expert & CEO, Harish Bijoor Consults Inc., a private-label consulting practice that operates in the realm of brand and business strategy. The company has a presence in the markets of Hong Kong, Seattle, London, Istanbul, Dubai and the Indian sub-continent. Harish is a much sought after public speaker who speaks to corporate audiences across the globe in the realm of motivation, people-management issues, brands, marketing and business at large. He has spoken to corporate audiences across the world for over 12,000 hours to date. He is active on Twitter @harishbijoor.
Haroon Khalid has an academic background in Anthropology and has been a travel writer and freelance journalist since 2008, traveling extensively around Pakistan, documenting historical and cultural heritage. He has written for several newspapers and magazines, including The News, Express Tribune, The Friday Times, Dawn, Scroll and Himal. His first book A White Trail: a journey into the heart of Pakistan’s religious minorities was published in 2013. His second book In Search of Shiva: a study of folk religious practices in Pakistan will be released in December, and his third book Walking with Nanak is scheduled to be released in April 2016. He is also an educationist and lives in Islamabad with his wife.
Hormis Tharakan, is a former Indian Police Service officer. He served the Government in various capacities including Secretary (R) in the Cabinet Secretariat, Govt. of India and Director-General of Police, Kerala. Post retirement in 2007, he has served as Advisor to the Administrative Reforms Commission of India. He was also appointed as Advisor to the Governor in 2007-2008 when President’s Rule was imposed in Karnataka. He served as a Member of the National Security Advisory Board from 2008 to 2010. During the same period, he was also Chief Advisor on Strategic Studies at BrahMos Aerospace, besides being on the Board of Directors of BrahMos Aerospace Trivandrum Limited. Currently, he is an Adjunct Professor at the Department of Geopolitics and International Relations in Manipal University and a Distinguished Scientist on the Visiting Faculty at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, researching into security-related issues. He has been a member of the State Security Commission, Government of Kerala, since 2012. He is currently member of a Committee set up by the Government of Kerala to draw up proposals for a Police University in the State. He was also a member of the Committee on Prevention of Corruption, which submitted its report to the Chief Minister of Kerala in July, 2012. He is on the Board of Governors of Janaagraha, a Bangalore-based organization working for urban renewal in India. He writes on issues related to geopolitics, terrorism, peace and conflict resolution in national dailies, most frequently in the Indian Express.
Humra Quraishi is a Delhi based writer, columnist and journalist. Her books include Kashmir: The Untold Story and a volume of her collective writings, Views: Yours and Mine. She has co- authored books with Khushwant Singh – The Good, the Bad and The Ridiculous and Absolute Khushwant. Her take on what’s it like to be a singleton in today’s turbulent times is part of the anthology – Chasing the Good Life : On Being Single. One of her essays, The State Can’t Snatch Away our Children, is part of the anthology – Of Mothers And Others Her short story collection – More Bad Time Tales was launched recently.
Indrajit Hazra is a writer and journalist. He is the author of numerous novels including The Garden of Earthly Delights (Roli/IndiaInk). His columns appear in the Times of India, the Sunday Guardian and the Khaleej Times. He lives in New Delhi and reads more than he writes.
Jahnavi Barua is a writer based in Bangalore. Her first book, Next Door, a collection of short stories was published by Penguin India in 2008 to wide critical acclaim. Her second book and first novel, Rebirth, was shortlisted for the 2011 Man Asian Literary Award and the 2012 Commonwealth Book Prize.
Jane De Suza
Jane De Suza’s latest novel Happily Never After is a hilariously honest love story. Earlier books include the detective-comedy The Spy who Lost her Head and the best-selling SuperZero series for children, among others. She is a management grad and an advertising consultant, and writes for magazines and anthologies across the world.
Jeanine Leane is a Wiradjuri woman from South-west New south Wales. A Doctorate in literature and Aboriginal representation followed a long teaching career at secondary and Tertiary level. Formerly a Research Fellow at the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander Studies, she currently holds a post-doctoral fellowship at ANU. In 2010, Jeanine’s first volume of poetry, Dark Secrets After Dreaming: AD 1887-1961 won the Scanlon Prize for Indigenous Poetry from the Australian Poets’ Union and her manuscript, Purple Threads won the David Unaipon Award at the Queensland Premier’s Literary Awards and is shortlisted for the 2012 Commonwealth Book Prize and the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards. Jeanine is the recipient of an Australian Research Council Discovery grant (2011) for her project; Reading the Nation: A critical study of Aboriginal/Settler representation in the contemporary Australian Literary Landscape and a Discovery Indigenous Award (2013) for her new project; The David Unaipon Award: Shaping the literary and cultural history of Aboriginal writing in Australia.
Winner of Sahitya Academy Award for 2013, social activist and commercial shipping professional.
Korkkai – Tamil Novel, published in Dec 2009 talked about a traditional community in south Tamil Nadu who were pioneers of Maritime Business and were also the Pearl Divers of Coromandal coast.
Aazhi Suzh Ulagu – Tamil Novel, published in Nov’2004 talked about traditional Fishermen who are making their living through fishing. It deals with the lives and fortune of several interlinked catholic fisherman family.
Sahitya Academy Award (2013) and Sujatha Best Novel Award (2011)
John Elliott is a former Financial Times journalist, whose best-selling book IMPLOSION: India’s Tryst with Reality was published earlier this year by Harper Collins India. Based in New Delhi, he writes a blog on South Asia current affairs: http://ridingtheelephant.wordpress.com/.
He first came to India in 1983 to open the FT’s South Asia bureau, and in 1988 was posted to Hong Kong. He returned to India in 1995 and has reported for The Economist, Fortune magazine, theNew Statesman,and now for Hong Kong-based AsiaSentinel.com. In 1995 he wrote “India and China – Asia’s New Giants: Stepping Stones to Prosperity”, for the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Contemporary Studies. He lead-edited an anthology, “Foreign Correspondent – 50 years of Reporting South Asia” ” (Penguin India, 2008/9).
Josy Joseph is the author of the recently released book, A Feast of Vultures: The Hidden Business of Democracy in India. He is an award-winning investigative journalist based in New Delhi and presently the National Security Editor of The Hindu. He holds a Master’s in International Relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, and Bachelor of Science in mathematics from Kerala University. He lives in New Delhi.
Keki N. Daruwalla
Born in 1937 in Lahore, now in Pakistan, Keki N. Daruwalla has been a notable presence on the literary scene for quite some time. The characteristic features of his poetry can be described as vigor and immediacy of language, knife-edge tone, an abiding and infatuated concern with love, death and domination, a skeptic and indignant cynicism about the plight of human society and a rare intensity in portraying living individuals. Daruwalla readily admits to critics’ charges of being too much of a landscape poet who takes into his aesthetic stride the sights and sounds of England, Yugoslavia, Helsinki, Stockholm, Volgograd, and Moscow which he has visited for poetry readings. His thematic canvas transcends the boundaries of India and stretches itself into the rest of the world. Critics maintain his concern for broad landscape imagery rather than political and social issues is a result of his long career as a Government of India official.
While pursuing his craft of writing, Keki N. Daruwalla served an illustrious career in Indian Police Service, rising to become a Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on International Affairs. He subsequently was in the Cabinet Secretariat until his retirement.
A recipient of Sahitya Akademi Award and Commonwealth Poetry Award, Keki N. Daruwalla has so far published about 12 books, consisting of mostly poems and a couple of fictional works. Some of his important works are Under Orion, The keeper of the dead, Landscapes, A summer of tigersand The minister for permanent unrest & other stories. He also edited Two decades of Indian poetry. The Library of Congress has all his books.
Kiran Mazumdar Shaw
Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw is the chairman and managing director of Biocon Limited, a biotechnology company based in Bangalore and the current chairperson of IIM-Bangalore. In 2014, she was awarded the Othmer Gold Medal, for outstanding contributions to the progress of science and chemistry. She is on the Financial Times’ top 50 women in business list. As of 2014, she is listed as the 92nd most powerful woman in the world by Forbes. She is also a member of the board of governors of the prestigious Indian School of Business and Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad.
Krishna Manavalli is currently an Professor of English at the Karnatak University, Dharwad. She specializes in Postcolonial Studies and Global Literatures. Her research interests include contemporary British literature, diaspora studies, literatures in the regional languages of South India, feminism, South Asian film studies and translations.
Lakshmi Devnath is a well-known writer on Carnatic music and other aspects of Indian culture. She has commendable knowledge of Sanskrit as well. Her deeply-researched articles find a place in prestigious publications such as The Hindu, Sruti and Sri Nrisimhapriya. Her body of work includes composers of Carnatic music, texts on Indian music philosophers and saints of India, and the Vedas.
Lakshmi’s passion is to familiarize the young with India’s glorious cultural heritage through innovative and exciting writing that appeals to their lively imagination. To this end, she has authored Sargam, a series of short stories that unravel milestones in the evolution of Carnatic music, and Poorva: Magic, Miracles and the Mystical Twelve, a contemporary retelling of literary hagiology. This book won such acclaim as to invite a republication of the book seven years after it was first launched. Lakshmi’s ongoing graphic series on Carnatic music legends, endearingly titled Pictures of Melody, is another path-breaking initiative.Lakshmi’s other books include A Class Apart, the biography of renowned educationist Mrs. Y. G. Parthasarathy, and An Incurable Romantic: The Musical Journey of Lalgudi Jayaraman. Both became runaway successes, requiring multiple reprints. An Incurable Romantic was sold out even before the official book launch.
Lakshmi’s ability to write with ease on a variety of subjects and for diverse age groups has won her wide admiration. She is currently engaged in writing the much-awaited Poorva sequel, Poorva in the Vedic Age.
Leila Seth retired as Chief Justice of Himachal Pradesh in 1992, was appointed in 1995 as the one-member commission to examine the death in custody of Rajan Pillai, and from 1997 to 2000 was a member of the 15th Law Commission of India. She does arbitration work and is involved in human rights activities. She lives in Noida with her husband Premo, son Shantum, daughter-in-law Gitanjali and granddaughter Nandini.
Lijia Zhang (Zhang Lijia) (born in May 1, 1964 in Nanjing) is a writer, journalist and public speaker. She describes herself as a communicator between China and the world and has given talks at conferences about contemporary China and lectured at many top universities including Stanford and Harvard and The University of Sydney. Her articles have been published in many newspapers and magazines. She co-authored China Remembers (OUP, 1999) and her memoir ‘Socialism is Great!’ A Worker’s Memoir of The New China, is published by Atlas & Co. and Random House and has been translated into seven languages. She was the subject of a BBC TV documentary Peschardt’s People. Sponsored by the US State Department, she was a fellow on the University of Iowa’s International Writing Program in 2009, She is completing her first novel, Lotus, about prostitution set in modern day Shenzhen. She currently lives in Beijing with her two daughters. She is a regular guest on ABC, BBC and CNN.
Madhavi Mahadevan is a fiction writer. She has written two books for children and two collections of short stories. Her latest is a novel, The Kaunteyas.
Madhu is the Natya Stem Dance Kampni’s Director and Choreographer. A graduate of commerce, journalism and choreography, she has trained in Kathak from her mother Dr Maya Rao and from Smt. Chitra Venugopal. Although she trained in contemporary dance in New York, she came back to India to create a unique ‘contemporary Indian dance’ vocabulary where tradition and modernity co-exist. As a Kathak and contemporary dancer, and panellist at important design and academic institutions, she has been invited on many occasions to perform, design programmes and choreographic works for prestigious cultural organisations in India, UK, Australia, New Zealand, UAE, South East Asia, Europe and USA. Madhu was chosen as one of India’s young achievers by the magazine India Today.
Madhu Trehan started the news magazine India Today in 1975. In 1986, she produced and anchored a path-breaking television news magazine programme Newstrack and Trehan became known as a pioneer in investigative journalism. In 2009, Trehan’s best seller book, Prism Me a Lie, Tell Me a Truth – Tehelka as Metaphor was published. Trehan is now Editor-in-Chief of www.newslaundry.com, a website that critiques the press and media.
Madhuri Banerjee is a bestselling author of 5 novels. Her recent book Scandalous Housewives is an explosive look at married women. She is also the screenplay writer for Hate Story 2, Revlon’s Relationship Guru, Maxim’s sex columnist, and a CNN-IBN blogger. Follow her on Twitter @MadhuriBanerjee or Facebook.
N. A. M. Ismail currently edits the online version of Kannada daily Prajavani. Outside his journalistic career spanning 20 years during which he worked for five newspapers, he is a technology enthusiast, free software activist, a political analyst and a media critic. He has edited four books and has been writing a regular Kannada column (ಇ-ಹೊತ್ತು) on “Information Technology and Society” and has been consulting on using regional languages in computers.
Mamta Sagar, an Indian poet, translator and playwright writing in the Kannada language has three collections of poems, four plays, an anthology of column writing, a collection of critical essays in Kannada and English on gender, language, literature and culture and a book on Slovenian-Kannada Literature Interactions to her credit. Her latest book ‘Hide & Seek’, a collection of her poems in English translation with the source text in Kannada was published from UK in January 2014. Her poems are included within the educational textbook for primary school children by Cambridge University Press, UK.
She has translated poetry and prose into Kannada and English, collaborated with the translation activity in many Indian and foreign languages. Mamta has conducted poetry workshops, curated poetry events, invited and organised events in India for poets from Senegal, UK, Malta and Slovenia. She has collaborated and performed with artists and poets from India, Australia, Philippines and Vietnam. She is interviewed and included in the documentary, ‘Cultures of Resistance’ directed by Iara Lee. Her poetry and interviews are showcased in ‘Los Chicos de Mañana’ a documentary directed by Javier Monero, Spain. She has presented poems at poetry festivals including STRUGA in Macedonia, Poetry Africa in South Africa, Granada Poetry Festival in Nicaragua, Medelline International Poetry Festival in Colombia, in Cuba, Serbia, Slovenia, Vietnam and Sri Lanka. She was a ‘Poet in Residence’ in Belgrade, Serbia. Dr. Mamta Sagar teaches at the Centre for Kannada Studies, Bangalore University and lives in Bangalore, India.
Margaret Barrett is Professor and Head of the School of Music at the University of Queensland.
Professor Barrett’s research projects encompass the investigation of the role of Music and the Arts in human cognition and social and cultural development. Her research has addressed problems in the areas of aesthetic decision-making, the meaning and value of Arts engagement for young people, young children’s musical thinking, young children’s identity work in and through music, teaching and learning practices in the arts, and the pedagogy and practice of creativity. A key aspect of her work has been the development of innovative arts-based inquiry methods in music and music education.
She has held positions as editor of Research Studies in Music Education, an Associate Editor of Psychology of Music, and a member of the Editorial Boards of key journals in music and arts education.
Professor Barrett has served as President of the International Society for Music Education (2012 – 2014), Chair of the World Alliance for Arts Education (2013 – 2014), Chair of the Asia–Pacific Symposium for Music Education Research (2009 – 2011), an elected member of the Board of the International Society for Music Education (2008 – 2010), and National President of the Australian Society for Music Education (1999 – 2001). Professor Barrett was the music discipline writer for the Shape Paper for the Australian Curriculum – The Arts and continues to provide advice to the curriculum process. She has been an advisor for arts and educational bodies nationally and internationally including the Australia Council for the Arts and the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority, UK.
Marie Munkara: Of Rembarranga, Tiwi and Chinese descent Marie was delivered on the banks of the Mainoru River in Arnhemland by her two grandmothers and spent her early years on Bathurst Island. Her first Novel Every Secret Thing (University of Queensland Press) won the David Unaipon Award in 2008 and the Northern Territories Book of the Year in 2010. Her two children’s books Rusty Brown and Rusty and Jojo (Laguna Bay Oxford Press) were launched in January 2014 and her second novel A Most Peculiar Act (Magabala) in May. Marie is currently working on her third and fourth novels (depending on what mood she’s in) and the TV mini-series for Every Secret Thing. Marie lives in Darwin with her teenage daughter and a menagerie of cats, dogs, frogs and the occasional visiting python.
Minal Hajratwala’s latest book is Bountiful Instructions for Enlightenment, published by The (Great) Indian Poetry Collective. She is a writing coach, author of the award-winning Leaving India: My Family’s Journey from Five Villages to Five Continents, and editor of Out! Stories from the New Queer India. She graduated from Stanford University, was a fellow at Columbia University, and was a 2011 Fulbright-Nehru Senior Scholar.
Mini Krishnan is Editor-Translations,Oxford University Press (India) where she sources and edits fiction, plays, autobiographies and biographies from 12 Indian languages into English. So far she has edited 84 full-length translations five of which have won national prizes for translation and are prescribed reading in universities. The OUP translation programme is not only one of the biggest translation programmes in India but also hosts the largest number of Dalit writers in translation.
She and is presently Member, Indian Literature Abroad a Ministry of Culture initiative to promote Indian writers in the six UNESCO languages; served as PAC Member,National Translation Mission and was the Founding Editor of the South Asia Women Writers Website hosted by the British Council (2004-6) and the Literary Advisor to The Hindu (1992-98).
Mita Kapur is the founder and CEO of Siyahi, India’s leading literary consultancy. She also creates and produces literary festivals and book reading events. Her first book, The F-Word was published by HarperCollins India in 2010. As a freelance journalist, she writes regularly for many newspapers and magazines on social and developmental issues along with travel, food and lifestyle humor stories.
Mitra Phukan is a writer, translator, columnist and classical vocalist who lives and works in Guwahati, Assam. Her published literary works include four children’s books, a biography, two novels, “The Collector’s Wife” and “A Monsoon of Music”, both published by Penguin-Zubaan, and a collection of fifty of her columns, “Guwahati Gaze”. Besides, her short stories have appeared in various journals. Her works have been translated into several Indian and European languages. She edits NEWFrontiers, (the journal of the North East Writers’ Forum) and is an active member of Aradhana, an organization that takes music to the underprivileged sections of society.
Dr Mridula Nath Chakraborty is lecturer in postcolonial theory at the University of Western Sydney and teaches/publishes on literatures of the subcontinent, in English and in translation, on issues of identity politics and multiculturalism and Bombay cinema. Her latest edited collection of essays, Being Bengali: at home and in the world (Routledge 2013), is an enquiry into the socio-intellectual history of this eclectic linguistic group from Eastern India. She has co-edited A Treasury of Bangla Stories (Srishti 1999) and her translations have appeared in The Table is Laid: the Oxford Anthology of South Asian Food Writing, The Lotus Singers: Stories from Contemporary South Asia, The Picador Book of Modern Indian Literature, The Bell and Other Stories and The Wordsmiths. She is the recipient of an AK Ramanujan Award for the most felicitous translations from two Indian languages, Bangla and Hindi, into English. In the recent years, Mridula has facilitated literary exchange between Australia and India through ALIF: Australia India Literatures International Forum (Sydney 2012) and a tri-nation Autumn School in Literary Translation (Kolkata 2013), where Nunga poet Ali Cobby Eckermann’s work was translated into Bangla. She is currently curating the project Literary Commons! which takes 14 Indigenous writers to Indian literary festivals 2014-2015, and seeks to make personal and publishing connections between Indigenous and Dalit literatures.
Mrinal Pande was born in 1946 in Tikamgarh to Shivani, a well known Hindi author and Shukdeo Pant, an educationist . She was schooled in Nainital and graduated from the University of Allahabad where she studied Sanskrit, ancient Indian history and English literature. Mrinal has also studied classical Hindusthani ( vocal ) music under eminent Gurus and art at the Corcoran School of Art, Washington DC.
Mrinal has taught at the Universities of Allahabad , Delhi and Bhopal before switching to journalism in mid 1980s . She has edited well known Hindi periodicals, Vama and Saptahik Hindustan for the Times of India and the Hindustan Times group .
Mrinal has worked as Editor Anchor for Hindi news in Star News and also Doordarshan .
In 2000 she became India’s first woman Chief Editor of a multi edition Hindi daily (Hindustan , Hindustan Times Group). She is also the founder President of the Indian Women’s Press Corps, a national body of India’s women journalists and a member of the National Board for Film Certificatio . Mrinal was also a member of the group that prepared Shramshakti, India’s first documentation of the status and lives of women workers in the unorganized informal sector.
In 2009, Mrinal was appointed Chairman of India’s national broadcaster, Prasar Bharati. She completed a 4 year term there and demitted office in April 2014 .
Mrinal has been writing in both Hindi and in Englsish. Her work covers fiction, plays, and essays on contemporary India and its women and a study of India’s rural women and their sexual and reproductive lives . She has also translated two rare accounts of the 1857 Mutiny, one from Marathi and another from Hindi, to highlight common citizens’ testimony as to how they had experienced the uprising.
She was awarded the Padmashree in 2006 for her services in the field of journalism , and the Red Ink Lifetime Achievement Award by the Mumbai Press Club in 2014.
She is married with two daughters and lives in New Delhi with her husband.
Mudnakudu Chinnaswamy (1954), a well known Kannada Poet hails from Mudnakudu village in Chamarajanagar District of Karnataka. He has two post graduate degrees viz., M.Com. M.A., with a D.Lit. in Social Sciences. He was a Finance Executive by profession and recently retired as Director (Finance) from Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation. Poetry is his passion but worked in other genres of literature as well, besides having a wide range of interests in culture, theatre, cinema and social work. He has brought out 26 books so far which include 6 collections of poetry, 4 of essays, 3 plays and a collection of short stories.
A prominent dalit voice, he has established a niche for himself through his empirical imaging in mellowed tone. His works have been translated into other Indian vernaculars and widely published. Translations of the selected poems in English have been published in the literary journals like Indian Literature, The New Quest, and Little Magazine (India). Translations have also been published in literary Magazines abroad (in Spanish Arquitrave (Columbia) and Hebrew in Helicon (Israel) in German Driesch Verlag (Austria) and so on. He has attended many International Poetry Conferences and extensively traveled.
His poetry in Spanish translated by Rowena Hill ‘Poemas: Mudnakudu Chinnaswamy’ has been published by the Cultural Department of Venezuelan Govt. (CONAC) in 2004 under ‘World Poetry Series’. He stands to be the first poet from kannada lore to get published with an anthology in Spanish. He has directed two plays for theater groups one being ‘Bahurupi’ for the National Repertoire, Rangayana in Mysore.
He has been associated in production of 2 feature films one of which won gold medal from GOK. Besides he himself acted in a documentary ‘mayaa loka’ He has been felicitated in and outside the country and credited with many awards including Karnataka Sahitya Academy Award in 2009 for life time achievement.
Na Damodara Shetty
Bio coming soon.
Nalini Rajan is Dean of Studies and Professor, Asian College of Journalism, Chennai, India. She has a doctorate in Social Communication (specializing in political philosophy) from the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium. She has travelled widely, and held post-doctoral fellowships in the UK (Oxford and Edinburgh) and in the US (New York). She has written three works of fiction, four on political philosophy, and edited five works on media studies. She is General Editor of the Series on ‘Studies in Journalism’ for the publishing house, Orient BlackSwan.
Writer, publisher and festival director Namita Gokhale has written twelve books including several works of fiction. Her celebrated first novel, ‘Paro: Dreams of Passion’, marks thirty years of publication in 2014. Other novels include ‘A Himalayan Love Story’, ‘The Book of Shadows’, ‘Shakuntala: The Play of the Memory’, and ‘Priya’, a recent sequel to Paro.
Gokhale has worked extensively with Indian myth. She has written ‘The Book of Shiva’ and retold the Mahabharata for young readers. She also co-edited the landmark anthology, ‘In Search of Sita: Revisiting Mythology’. An edited anthology ‘Travelling In, Travelling Out’ was published in 2014.
A founder and co-director of the Jaipur Literature Festival and of ‘Mountain Echoes’, the annual Bhutan Festival, Gokhale is committed to showcasing literature from across the Indian languages. She currently curates ‘Kitaabnama: Books and Beyond’, a multilingual book show on Doordarshan.
Nandita Bose explores relationships and social biases through her works of fiction. Her published works include: Tread Softly, The Perfume of Promise, If Walls could Weep and Shadow & Soul.
Nayantara Sahgal has written nine novels and eight works of non-fiction. She is the recipient of the Sinclair Prize for Fiction, the Sahitya Akademi Award and the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize. A member of the Sahitya Akademi’s Advisory Board for English till she resigned during the Emergency, Sahgal served on the jury of the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize in 1990 and 1991. She has held fellowships in the United States at the Bunting Institute, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the National Humanities Center. She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and was awarded an honorary doctorate in literature by the University of Leeds in 1997. She is associated with the founding of the People’s Union for Civil Liberties and served as its vice-president during the 1980s.
Neelesh Misra has written Once Upon a Timezone, The Absent State, End of the Line: The Story of the Killing of the Royals in Nepal and 173 Hours in Captivity. Known for his radio show, Yaadon Ka Idiot-box with Neelesh Misraon BIG FM 92.7, he is also co-founder-editor of Gaon Connection, India’s rural newspaper. He has founded content creation company Content Project.
Nirupama Dutt is Chandigarh’s homegrown poet, journalist, literary and art critic, translator and raconteur of many seasons who has written and edited several books. She writes in both Punjabi and English. She received the Punjabi Akademi Award for her anthology of poems, ‘Ik Nadi Sanwali Jahi’. Her poetry anthologies have also come out in English and Hindi. Her translations include Stories of the Soil (translation of 41 stories from Punjabi, published by Penguin) Poet of the Revolution (translation of the memoirs and poetry of Lal Singh Dil published by Penguin). She has written the biography of a Dalit activist and singer called TheBallad of Bant Singh. Books edited by her include Our Voices, an anthology of SAARC poetry, and Half the Sky and Children of the Night, two collections of Pakistani short stories. At present she is translating three novellas by Amrita Pritam and translating an anthology of poems by Gulzar.
Nisar Azam, born Nassar Ahmad Shah in 1977 at Dangiwacha Rafiabad, District Baramulla of Jammu and Kashmir State is a young Kashmiri writer/poet and translator. Writing poetry in Kashmiri/Urdu and Hindi from his early teens. He joined Prominent Literary Organisation Rafiabad Adabi Markaz as its youngest ever member at the age of 13 years. He is one amoungst a few Kashmiri poets whose work was published in noted Hindi magazine “Vasudha” in its Jammu and Kashmir number titled “Jammu Kashmir ki Sarjan Abhivyektiyaan”.
His first poetic collection “Patti Leji Zoon Daras” (THEN THE MOONS EYES FROZE) published in the year 2009 was widely praised and appreciated. He has the distinction of being the youngest Kashmiri poet to receive first ever Yuva Sahitya Akedmi Award, 2011 for his maiden poetry collection. He is presently the President of the Rafiabad Adabi Markaz.
Nupur Basu is a senior journalist, media educator and an award-winning documentary film-maker. Among her five independent documentaries is “No Country for Young Girls”.
Palash Krishna Mehrotra
Palash Krishna Mehrotra was born in Bombay in 1975. He was educated at St Stephen’s College, Delhi, the Delhi School of Economics, and Balliol College, Oxford, where he read for a PPE. He is the editor of Recess: The Penguin Book of Schooldays and the author of Eunuch Park: 15 Stories of Love and Destruction. He writes a fortnightly column for Mail Today, and is Contributing Editor, Rolling Stone India.
He lives in New Delhi and Dehradun.
Pankaj Rag is an IAS officer of 1990 batch and has earlier served as Commissioner of Archeology, Archives and Museums, Government of Madhya Pradesh. He was the former director of Film and Television institute of India , Pune .Earlier he served as a DM of different districts of Madhya Pradesh. e attended St. Stephen’s College, Delhi and graduated in History. He then did his M Phil in Modern Indian history from Delhi University. A renowned poet, he has had several of his works published. His articles on modern Indian history, especially on nationalism and the 1857 revolt have been published in renowned journals such as the Social Scientist. Rag has also been the Commissioner of Directorate of Archeology, Archives and Museums in Bhopal. His interest in films is evident in his massive collection of songs as well as some extensive research in films and culture which this 1990 batch IAS officer has done. Two years ago, Rag authored a book on film music directors from 1931 to 2005 which was published in 2006.
“A fearlessly truthful writer with a big heart”, best describes Paro Anand. Recognized internationally and locally, including by President Kalam of India. She headed the National Centre for Children’s Literature, has interacted with over 3 Million people. She runs a programme Literature in Action and is working on a Screenplay based on her book.
Pradyot Manikya Debburma
Pradyot Bikram Manikya Deb Barma, also known as P.B.K Manikya (born July 4, 1978), is the head of the Royal House of Tripura. He was born and brought up in Delhi,India. He is the current General Secretary of the Tripura Pradesh Congress and also the editor of TNT-The Northeast Today Magazine.
Prakash Kambathalli is the publisher, Ankita Book House.
Prathibha Nandakumar is a poet, journalist and filmmaker. She has 21 books to her credit. She has travelled extensively to present her poems in several national and international literary festivals. Her poems are included in major international anthologies. She has been honored with several prestigious literary awards and is the recipient of the Bangalore Literary Festival award 2015.
Preeti Shenoy, among the top five highest selling authors in India, is also on the Forbes longlist of the most influential celebrities in India. She is the highest selling woman writer in India. India Today has named her as being unique for being the only woman in the best-selling league. Her second book, Life is what you make it, continues to top the best-selling charts and has been translated to several languages, ncluding Turkish. Her third, Tea for two and a piece of cake, made it to the top five best-selling Indian fiction of 2012. Her fourth, The Secret Wish List, was among the top ten fiction of 2013. Her fifth, The One You Cannot Have, debuted at No.2 on the Nielsen list. The sixth, It happens for a Reason, was out in December 2014 and has been on the Nielsen top ten, every week, since its release. Her seventh book, Why We love The Way We Do, was among the top five best selling non-fiction books of 2015. Her latest, It’s all In the Planets, is at No.3 on the Nielsen list. She has been awarded the Academia award for Business Excellence by the New Delhi Institute of Management, which is given to distinguished professionals for innovative best practices for their contribution to their field that adds to India’s international and national reputation. She has also received the ‘100 Young Indian women achievers award’ in the Powerful leader category, given to the top professionals their field, chosen by consumers and Industry. She is also an artist specialising in portraiture. With a very popular blog, she also writes a weekly column in The Financial Chronicle.
Join Karadi, Priya Muthukumar of Storipur and their little lizard friend as they go about looking for a new tail for the lizard so that he can get a brand new look for himself. Do watch out for the Tail-Shop; it might have the perfect tail for you!
Prof. R. Vaidyanathan
Prof. R. Vaidyanathan is Professor of Finance and Control and UTI Chair Professor in the area of Capital Markets at IIM Bangalore. His areas of interest are Corporate Finance, Investments, Portfolio Management, Risk Management and Pensions. He is the founder Chairperson for the Centre for Capital Market and Risk Management [CCMR] at IIMB. He is a National Fellow of ICSSR.
A graduate of the Loyola College, Madras and a Masters from the Indian Statistical Institute, Calcutta he obtained his Fellow in Management (Doctorate) from the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta where he also taught for four years.
As a visiting Fulbright Scholar in Corporate Finance at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaigne USA, he studied the credit rating mechanisms of major agencies like S&P, Moody’s etc.
His recent book titled “India Uninc – The Unincorporated Sector in the Indian Economy’, published by Tata Westland has been well received by policy planners and the market. He has also published a book on Pensions—“Facing the Future” in collaboration with ING by Tata McGraw-Hill. He is presently working on a book on Black Money & Tax Havens and India’s wealth abroad.
Radhika Jha is the author of Smell, The Elephant and the Maruti and My Beautiful Shadow. She has worked for Hindustan Times and BusinessWorld, writing on culture, environment and economy. She has also worked for the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, where she started up a project for the education of the children of victims of terrorism in different parts of India.
Raghav Chandra (IAS), additional secretary, Govt of India, New Delhi, has lived, for a large part of his life, around the beautiful forests and bewitching tiger reserves of Central India. He has closely observed and is passionately moved by the conflicts that are critically endangering our ecosystem and wildlife, particularly the tiger. His book Scent Of A Game is a multidimensional chronicle of tiger-poaching, big-game hunting and the international mafia which is minting money at the cost of the endangered species.
Rajiv Malhotra is an internationally known researcher, writer, speaker and public intellectual on current affairs as they relate to civilizations, cross-cultural encounters, religion and science. He studied physics and computer science, and served in multiple careers including: software development executive, Fortune 100 senior corporate executive, strategic consultant, and successful entrepreneur in the information technology and media industries. At the peak of his career when he owned 20 companies in several countries, he took early retirement at age 44 to pursue philanthropy, research and public service.
He established Infinity Foundation for this purpose in 1994. He has conducted original research in a variety of fields and has influenced many thinkers in India and the West. He has disrupted the mainstream thought process among academic and non-academic intellectuals alike, by providing fresh provocative positions on Dharma and on India. Some of the focal points of his work are: interpretation of Dharma for the current times; comparative religion, globalization, and India’s contributions to the world. He has authored hundreds of articles, provided strategic guidance to numerous organizations and has over 400 video lectures available online.
Some of his books, that are a good resource to understand his game changing work, include, Academic Hinduphobia, The Battle For Sanskrit: “Is Sanskrit political or sacred, oppressive or liberating, dead or alive?”, Being Different: An Indian Challenge to Western Universalism, Breaking India: Western Interventions in Dravidian and Dalit Faultlines, Indra’s Net: Defending Hinduism’s Philosophical Unity.
Besides these, his writings became the center of discussion in the book, Invading the Sacred. Currently, he is the full-time founder-director of Infinity Foundation in Princeton, NJ. He also serves as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Center for Indic Studies at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, and is adviser to various organizations. He is the primary advisor for Infinity Foundation India that has been formed recently, engaged in various activities intended to disrupt the prevailing discourse regarding the Indian civilization while also building the alternative narrative for the same.
Dr Rakhshanda Jalil is a writer, critic and literary historian. She has published over 15 books and written over 50 academic papers and essays. Her book on the lesser-known monuments of Delhi, Invisible City , continues to be a bestseller. Her recent works include:Liking Progress, Loving Change: A Literary History of the Progressive Writers Movement in Urdu (OUO, 2014); a biography of Urdu feminist writer Dr Rashid Jahan A Rebel and her Cause (Women Unlimited, 2014; and a translation of 15 short stories by Intizar Husain entitled The Death of Sheherzad (HarperCollins, 2014). She runs an organization called Hindustani Awaaz, devoted to the popularization of Hindi-Urdu literature and culture and blogs at www.hindustaniawaaz-rakhshanda.blogspot.com and another at IBN Live. Her debut collection of fiction, Release & Other Stories, was published by Harper Collins in 2011, and received critical acclaim. At present, she is writing a monograph on the Urdu poet, Shahryrar, for the Sahitya Akademi’s ‘Makers of Indian Literature’ series, and a critical biography of the Jnanpith-award winning poet Ali Sardar Jafri for Oxford University Press.
Rani Mukerji is an award-winning actor with a firm place in the Bollywood firmament. The leading lady of several films, she is known both for her blockbuster films as well as critically acclaimed ones. Her films include Mardaani, No One Killed Jessica, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Bunty Aur Babli, Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, Veer-Zaara and Talaash to name a few. For her roles in the films Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998), Yuva (2004), and No One Killed Jessica (2011), Mukerji won the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress. She also won the Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress for her roles in Saathiya (2002) and Black (2005), and received the Filmfare Award for Best Actress for her roles in Hum Tum (2004) and Black (2005).
Rashmi Menon has been a part of the Indian publishing industry for nearly a decade. She is currently the commissioning editor at Amaryllis. She enjoys helping new authors develop a book idea to really make it their own, gets a kick from seeing her projects realised in print.
Ritu Menon is the co-founder of Kali for Women, India’s first feminist press, and founder of Women Unlimited, an associate of Kali for Women. A co-author of Borders & Boundaries: Women in India’s Partition, she has edited No Woman’s Land: Women from Pakistan, India & Bangladesh Write about the Partition of India. Also recently published are Educating Muslim Girls: A Comparison of Five Indian Cities and Unequal Citizens: A Study of Muslim Women in India, both co-authored with Zoya Hasan, and In a Minority: Essays on Muslim Women in India, co-edited with Zoya Hasan. She has also co-edited Just Between Us: Women Speak About their Writing and Storylines: Conversations with Women Writers. She has also co-authored From Mathura to Manorama: Resisting Violence Against Women in India.
Robert Davidson is a prolific composer, bassist, lecturer and founder and artistic director of Topology. Davidson studied composition with Terry Riley in California before completing a composition PhD at the University of Queensland. He previously studied South Indian vocal music in Kerala, India. Davidson’s compositions are regularly performed, recorded and broadcast around the world. All of Australia’s professional orchestras and many leading soloists and ensembles have commissioned and performed his works. With Topology he has released eleven albums and a DVD, and has directed numerous artistic collaborations.
Rohini Nilekani is Founder-Chairperson, Arghyam, a foundation she has personally endowed to fund initiatives in ‘Safe, Sustainable water for All’. Since 2005, Arghyam has supported work in water and sanitation all around India. Arghyam also facilitates the India Water Portal, which has become a singular resource for the sector.
In 2014, together with her husband Nandan Nilekani, she co-founded and is a Director of EkStep, an education non-profit that has created a technology platform for early learning.
In 2004, she co-founded and funded Pratham Books, a non-profit children’s publisher, which aims to democratize the joy of reading with ‘A book in every child’s hands’. By the time she retired as Chairperson on December 31 st , 2013, Pratham Books had reached millions of children with indigenous, attractive books in multiple languages.
Rohini sits on the Board of ATREE- Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment, an environmental think tank. She is on the Eminent Persons Advisory Group of the Competition Commission of India. Between 2010 and 2012, she was a member of the Audit Advisory Board of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India.
Earlier, she spent several years as a journalist, and has worked or written for many leading publications such as Bombay Magazine, India Today, MINT and the Times of India. Her first novel, Stillborn, a medical thriller, was published by Penguin Books. In 2008, she anchored a television show called Uncommon Ground for NDTV, which created a rare dialogue between top leaders of the corporate and social sectors. A book based on the show was published by Penguin Books India in 2011. Under the pseudo name ‘Noni’, she has also authored several books for young children, including the popular Sringeri Srinivas series, published by Pratham Books.
As a committed philanthropist, she continues to fund work in areas such as governance and accountability, independent media, education and research and environmental sustainability.
Rohini Nilekani is an active advocate for Indian philanthropy.
Rudra Prasad Nanjundappa
Prasad is a social media evangelist and an IT professional. Born and bought up in Bengaluru he has an BE & MBA degree. He is the co-founder of www.kannadabaruthe.com / www.iKnowKannada.com, an initiative to help non-Kannadiga friends learn spoken Kannada. His team has also launched an android app and undertakes various other initiatives in the virtual & real world to promote the cause. They are also in the process of introducing a new & effective way of learning Kannada for Kannadiga’s themselves, specially focused at metro crowd who can speak Kannada but are challenged in reading and writing Kannada effectively. He is a very strong proponent of a non-fanatic & inclusive approach to promote Kannada.
S G Vasudev
S. G. Vasudev born in Mysore, during 1941, to S.K. Gopal and Rathnamma. He is an alumnus of Madras Arts College and one of the longtime artists associated with Cholamandal Artists’ Village. He was married to the late Arnavaz there and currently stays in Bangalore. He is one of the most prominent painters in Karnataka and has held art shows in many parts of the world and his works are in collections at various galleries. He has won many awards in India and abroad.
Prof. Sabaree Mitra has been teaching Chinese Language, Literature and Culture in Jawaharlal Nehru University, since 1990. Her basic training has been in Chinese Language and Literature and her research interest includes contemporary Chinese literature, criticism and cultural history, and India-China Cultural Relations. Prof. Sabaree Mitra has presented papers in National and International Conferences, and published research articles in academic journals such as China Report, Hispanic Horizon, JSL. Her books include Purbadiganter Kabita: Samakaleen tin china kabir ek jhalak (2002), a collection of contemporary Chinese poetry translated into Bengali,Literature and Politics in 20th century China: Issues and Themes (2005), and, Chinese Women Writers and Gender Discourse (1976-1996) (2008). Prof. Mitra is currently working on a book entitled Cultural Globalization and the Chinese Experience: Discourse, Praxis and Challenges. She is an Honorary Fellow in the Institute of Chinese Studies, and a member of the Editorial Board of China Report. Prof. Mitra has been recently nominated as Chairperson of the Expert Group, engaged in compilation of Encyclopedia of India-China Cultural Contacts on behalf of the Ministry of External Affairs, GOI.
Sam Miller is the author of A Strange Kind of Paradise: India through Foreign Eyes (Penguin India and Jonathan Cape – 2014). Sam was born and brought up in London. He studied History at Cambridge University and Politics at SOAS, before joining the BBC in 1986, for which he has worked, on and off, ever since. In the early 1990s he was the BBC World Service TV and radio correspondent in Delhi. Later he became the head of the Urdu service and subsequently Managing Editor, South Asia. He was posted back to Delhi in 2002 and has remained there since. He is the author of Delhi: Adventures in a Megacity (2009) and Blue Guide: India (2012).
Sameer Arshad Khatlani
Sameer Arshad Khatlani is a Delhi-based journalist with the Times of India (TOI)’s national and international news gathering team, where he commissions, edits and rewrites news stories. He has regularly done reportage besides writing features and opinion pieces for TOI, The Economic Times, The Times Crest and The News International. National politics, South Asia with Pakistan in particular are his main areas of focus along with human rights, Kashmir, minority affairs etc. Sameer’s forthcoming book focuses on humanitarian disaster in Kashmir and puts it in historic perspective from the vantage point of having grown up in the Valley.
Samhita is the author and illustrator of The Mahabharata – A Child’s View. More recently, she collaborated with artist Moyna Chitrakar on the New York Times bestseller Sita’s Ramayana. Last year, Arni’s third bookThe Missing Queen,was published jointly by Zubaan and Penguin in India. Elle Magazine named Arni as one of twenty young upcoming South Asian writers to watch out for.
Arni was a scriptwriter for “Rafina”, a feature film directed by Pakistani filmmaker Sabiha Sumar, and worked for six months in Kabul on the script for “The Defenders” a 13-part television series that aired in Afghanistan.
Sandeep K N
Sandeep KN is a software engineer by profession. Sandeep was instrumental in building Kannada Wiktionary, which is a lexical companion to Wikipedia. Sandeep is a key contributor to “Pada Pada Kannada Padaane” group, which is a community involved project to coin new, simple to use Kannada words for many complex language domains. He is a part of honalu portal which is trying to bring contemporary science and technology corpus from English to Kannada in simple, easy to comprehend form of Kannada. He is a firm believer of enabling Kannada in the digital space.
Saniya has been writing fiction in Marathi for many years. So far published 14 short story collections, 3 novels and 2 non fictions including a travelogue. She has many prestigious literary awards to her credit. Her work has been translated into English, German and many Indian languages.
Interested in portraying intricate human relationships and the challenges of the present times. The focus of her writing has been a newly awakened woman who is sensitive to her surroundings as also to her inner voice. Widely travelled and now settled in Bangalore, she works as a voluntary counselor.
Sankarshan Thakur was born in Patna in 1962 and went to school at St. Xavier’s, Patna and St. Xavier’s, Delhi. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Hindu College, Delhi University, in 1983.
He began his journalistic career with SUNDAY magazine in 1984. He has been Associate Editor with The Telegraph and Indian Express. Before returning to The Telegraph for his second stint in 2009, he was Executive Editor of Tehelka.
Thakur is currently The Telegraph‘s Delhi-based Roving Editor. He has extensively reported Kashmir, Bihar and socio-political conflict in the sub-continent. He is the author of Subaltern Saheb, a political biography of Laloo Yadav. He is currently working on a book on Bihar under Nitish Kumar. He has published monographs on the Kargil War, Pakistan and caste honour killings in Uttar Pradesh.
Satyarth Nayak is an author, script-writer & journalist based in Delhi. Holding a Masters in English Literature from St. Stephen’s, his short stories have won British Council Writers Circle Prize and also published in Chicken Soup for the Soul series. His debut novel The Emperor’s Riddles released by Amaryllis this year, has become a bestselling thriller and is earning him comparisons with Dan Brown. Called ‘a gripping tale of intrigue’ by Hindustan Times and ‘a heady mix of history and mystery’ by The Hindu, the book has also been acclaimed by Amish Tripathi and Ashwin Sanghi and is already in reprint. A former CNN-IBN Correspondent, Satyarth was awarded the SAARC Honour for Health Reporting in 2008.
Sharan Kumar Limbale
Sharan Kumar Limbale is a Marathi language author, poet and literary critic. He has penned more than 40 books, but is best known for his autobiographical novel Akkarmashi. Akkarmashi is translated in several other Indian languages and in English. The English translation is published by the Oxford University Press with the title The Outcaste. His critical work Towards an Aesthetics of Dalit Literature (2004) is considered amongst the most important works on Dalit literature.
Sharath Komarraju is a Bangalore based author. He began life as a software engineer but has since jumped the fence to write full time. His first novel, Murder in Amaravati, was longlisted for the Commonwealth Book Prize in 2013. Perhaps his best known work is the Hastinapur series, which attempts to tell the story of the Mahabharata through the thoughts and lives of the epic’s lesser known female characters. When he’s not writing, he’s either watching cricket or talking to his wife, or trying to watch cricket while talking to his wife.
Shashi Warrier was born in 1959 and got a degree in economics from BITS, Pilani, in 1981. He started writing novels in 1994-95 after over a dozen years of working at other things, including consulting, business journalism, computer programming, project management, teaching, and a few other things he’d rather not discuss. He started with fairy tales, moved on to thrillers and then literary fiction, and intends to return to fairy tales sometime in the future. He likes Hindustani music, motorcycling, and yoga, and is learning to cook. He lives in Mangalore, Karnataka.
With over three decades of seminal reporting from the political and social frontlines of a changing India, Shekhar Gupta’s byline is today synonymous with unparalleled credibility, independence and influence. His work includes some of the most significant investigations in contemporary journalism in the region: from Indira Gandhi’s Operation Blue Star to the disastrous Indian intervention in Sri Lanka, from tracking Pakistan’s politics and military to the first Afghan jihad and its effect in Kashmir.
A recipient of the Padma Bhushan in 2009, India’s third highest civilian honour, Gupta is Editor-in-Chief of The Indian Express newspaper. Under his leadership, The Indian Express has thrice won the Vienna-based International Press Institute’s Award for Excellence in Journalism. He joined the newspaper as a reporter in 1977 and then spent a decade in India Today as a reporter and editor.
A regular speaker at the World Economic Forum in Davos and its India summits, Gupta is the author of Assam: A Valley Divided (1984) and a monograph, ‘India Redefines Its Role’ (1995), for the International Institute for Strategic Studies, London, where he is a member of the Council. He also anchors Walk the Talk, a weekly conversation on NDTV with newsmakers from across the world. A collection of these interviews will be published soon.
A proud father of a pastry chef in Delhi and a mathematical economist in London, Gupta lives in New Delhi with his wife—and the company of an adorable family of dogs and cats whom you would call stray at your own peril.
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.
Shobhaa De’s 17 books have all been runaway bestsellers. Her latest, Sethji, was declared this season’s hottest seller by the book trade. A widely read columnist in leading publications, she is known for her outspoken views, making her one of India’s most respected opinion shapers. She lives in Mumbai with her family.
Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi
Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi is author of The Lost Flamingoes of Bombay and The Last Song of Dusk. He has written for TIME, the New York Times, and currently lives in north Goa.
Sidin Vadukut is the author of four books. His bestselling Dork trilogy of office culture humour novels told the story of Robin Einstein Varghese–unlikely corporate titan, strategy guru and international Malayali man of mystery. His fourth book is The Sceptical Patriot, a bestselling collection of investigations into the veracity of oft-quoted glories and achievement in Indian history. Vadukut is an editor and columnist with the Mint newspaper, and a contributor to Cricinfo, Quartz, the Khaleej Times, and several other unsuspecting publications. He lives, and tweets, in London with his wife, daughter and a painfully slow metabolism
Sitanshu Yashaschandra is among contemporary Gujarati literature’s most eminent representatives. A poet, playwright, translator and academic, he has received several awards over the years from the Sahitya Akademi Award (1987) for his significant opus, Jatayu, to the Padma Shri (2006) from the Government of India. He has authored three books of poetry.
Yashaschandra has worked as Vice Chancellor (Saurashtra University), UGC Emeritus Professor and National Lecturer, as well as Chief Editor of the Encyclopedia of Indian Literature (Sahitya Akademi). His doctoral work at Indiana University, USA, was in comparative literature, and at the University of Bombay, in Indian and Western Poetics. He has also been awarded a Fulbright Scholarship and a Ford West European Fellowship for research in Comparative Literature. He has taught, as Professor and Chair of Gujarati, at the M. S. University of Baroda, from 1972, and has been a visiting Professor at the Sorbonne University (Paris), the Loyola Marymount University (Los Angeles), and Jadavpur University (Kolkata). His creative and critical theory work is mainly in Gujarati but has been widely translated into Hindi and other languages. He has translated several works of poetry, drama and criticism from English to Gujarati. Tokhaar, his adaptation of Peter Shaffer’sEquus was hailed as a landmark play in modern Gujarati theatre.
Sowjanya KK is a RJ with one of the leading radio stations in Bangalore. She is an engineer by education and a trained carnatic musician. She has hosted several TV shows for leading channels and also hosted 100+ stage shows in Kannada. She is a very passionate Kannadiga and always finds ways to do her bit for the language.
Sumit Chakraberty has worked as a journalist for over 30 years at Indian Express, The Times of India, BiTV, UTV, and lastly DNA, where he was the Sunday Editor. He is now an independent writer on three of his passions – technopreneurship, food culture, and cricket strategy. He is the author of Master Laster: What They Don’t Tell You About Sachin Tendulkar, and is currently working on two other books.
Chakraberty is an alumnus of the Hyderabad Public School and BITS, Pilani.
Sunayana Kachroo Bhide
Sunayana Kachroo Bhide, Poet, Dialogue and Storywriter – Films
In her own words – Born and brought up in Kashmir, I have a Masters degree in Computer Science from Pune University. I moved to USA in 2000 for work and been here ever since. I currently live in Boston area.
My first poem was published at the age of 15, I continued writing and exploring different forms of poetic expressions like Kavita, English Poems, Nazms and Dohe. My love of music triggered my interest in poetry.
Waqt Se Pare –Beyond Time
This book is a collection of my special poems and pictures taken by me over the years. Three poems from my book have been recorded and released as singles.
Sundeep Bhutoria is an author, speaker, columnist, blogger, art collector and a wild life enthusiast. He has authored two books and delivered lectures in eminent universities including Czech Republic University, New York University, Moscow University and The City College of New York. He has been featured as one of the 50 youth figures that India can look up to by the Asia Magazine in 2005. In September 2010 he was felicitated for his chosen area of work at The House of Lords, London (UK). Currently a trustee of NGOs Prabha Khaitan Foundation and Education For All Trust, which he started to carry out various social welfare activities and outreach programmes, he is the secretary of Rajasthan Foundation Kolkata Chapter, an autonomous body instituted by the Rajasthan government.
Sandeep has been instrumental in ideating and executing some of the popular branded campaigns in India like the Author’s Afternoon, Desert Soul, Desert Storm, Write Circle, Tete-a-Tea, Ek Mulakat, Recipe Rendezvous, Kalam, Choopal and so on – to promote talent in literature, fine arts, folk and traditional art, films, social activities and cuisine. He has authored a book in English, The Safari, on wildlife preservation and tiger protection in India. His other book in Hindi called Aap Biti Jag Biti is a travelogue that touches upon the cultural and social mores in different countries.
Journalist, columnist and television presenter, Sunil Sethi has hosted the weekly literary show – Just Books – on NDTV since early 2005. He was one of the founding editorial team of India Today, has worked for the Hindustan Times and been a columnist for the Times of India and the Indian Express.
His journalism has appeared in The Economist, the Boston Globe and several international publications; he has scripted and presented documentaries for the BBC and Channel 4. He is also a recipient of the Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University and the Japan Foundation fellowship.
Susan Visvanathan is the author of Something Barely Remembered (Roli Indiaink and Flamingo 2000), The Visiting Moon (Roli Indiaink 2002), Phosphorus and Stone (Zubaan and Penguin 2007),The Seine at Noon(Roli IndiaIink 2007) and Nelycynda and Other Stories ( Roli Indiaink 2012). She has also authored several Sociological works, the best known of which are The Christians of Kerala: History, Belief and Ritual (Oup 1993) The Children of Nature: The Life and Legacy of Ramana Maharshi (Roli Lotus 2010) and Friendship, Interiority and Mysticism (Orientblackswan 2007) Prof Visvanathan teaches Sociology,at Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi.
Susmit Sen, founding member of the fusion band Indian Ocean, released his solo debut album Depths of the Ocean in 2011. He has co-authored (with Sehba Imam) Ocean to Ocean, a memoir.
Swapan Dasgupta has edited a collection of essays: Nirad Chaudhuri—The First Hundred Years. A co-participant of the weekly show Politically Incorrect with Mani Shankar Aiyar on NDTV, he has held senior editorial posts at The Statesman, The Daily Telegraph, The Times of India, The Indian Express and India Today, where he was managing editor till 2003.
T V Mohandas Pai
Chairman, Manipal Global Education; former member of the Board and Head – Finance and HR, Infosys Ltd.
T. P. Rajeevan
Born in a rural hilly village, Paleri, in Kozhikode district, Kerala, THACHOM POYIL RAJEEVAN writes in English and Malayalam.
Rajeevan began writing poetry and prose at an early age and earned reputation when he was at college. After obtaining a Master Degree in English Language and Literature, he moved to New Delhi where he worked as journalist with various newspapers. In 1988, he returned to his home state Kerala and joined the University of Calicut as Public Relations officer.
In English, Rajeevan has published a chap book Kannaki (Crux Publishers, Vermont, USA, 2003) and a collection of poems, He Who was Gone Thus (Yeti Books, Calicut, India, 2004). He has also edited an anthology of poems Third Word: Post Socialist Poetry (Monsoon Editions, Calicut, 2007) with the Croatian poet Lana Derkac.
In Malayalam, he writes under the name T P Rajeevan and his published works include three collections of poems in Malayalam viz, Vathil, (The Door, 1991), Rashtratantram (Political Strategies, 2004) and Koritharichanal (The Day when I was Horripilated, 2005) in addition to a collection of essays on literary and cultural issues, titled Athe Akasam and Athe Bhoomi (The Same Sky, The same Earth, 2001) and a travelogue namely Purappettu Poya Vakku (On the Trial of the Lost Word, 2006). He has edited an anthology of world poetry, Virunnuvanna Vakuu (The Guest Words). His First novel in Malayalam, Paleri Manikkyam: Oru PathirakolapathakathinteKatha is being made into movie. Presently he is working on a novel in English.
Rajeevan has participated in many literary programmes and has also held a Ledig House International Writer-in-Residence Fellowship in 2008 at Hudson, New York.
Tanja Dückers was born on 25 September 1968 to art historian parents in West Berlin. She lives with her family in Berlin.
After an extended stay in the United States, she read German studies, Dutch studies, American studies and art history at Berlin’s Free University and at Amsterdam University, graduating with an interdisciplinary dissertation on “The aesthetic of the sublime in modern painting, as seen in the work of Barnett Newman”.
During her studies, she worked for three years as a copywriter for news and weather broadcasts on Deutsche Welle TV in Berlin and as an editorial assistant for various publishers. Her first two books, twin volumes of poetry, were published while she was still studying, her first novel shortly after she graduated. Since her studies, Tanja Dückers has made her living as a freelance writer and journalist. She also teaches on German studies and Creative Writing programmes outside Germany.
Scholarships and teaching jobs have taken her, among other places, to Los Angeles, Meadville/Pennsylvania, Hanover/New Hampshire, Flanders and Brussels, Bristol (UK), Barcelona, Paris, Prague, Krakow, Bucharest, Sibiu, Sylt and Ahrenshoop, Gotland/Sweden, Cyprus and Salzburg.
As a journalist Tanja Dückers writes for various newspapers and magazines, including Die Zeit, Spiegel, Süddeutsche Zeitung, Die Welt, National Geographic, Brigitte, taz, Emma, Frankfurter Rundschau, Berliner Zeitung, Berliner Morgenpost, Jungle World … From 2008 on she is writing a monthly essay on challenging political questions for ZEIT Online.
Novels and short stories:
- Hausers Zimmer (2011)
- Hotel mit Seeblick
- Der Schokoladenbrunnen
- Der längste Tag des Jahres
- Portola Drive
- Café Brazil
Poetry and essay:
- Luftpost. Gedichte Berlin-Barcelona
- Mehrsprachige Tomaten
- Morgen nach Utopia
- Über das Erinnern
- Fundbüros und Verstecke
- Jonas und die Nachtgespenster
- Grün, grün, grün sind alle meine Kleider (planned for 2015)
- Grüße aus Transnistrien
Works as an Associate English Professor in the Government Arts College. She has published seven books in Kannada- Thodiraga (poetry collection), Chitta Glaniya Maatu (Poetry collection), Ondu Tundu Bella (Poetry collection), Hedeyanthaduva Sodaru (Criticism), Nirvasahathikarana (Humanity), Sthree Shikashana-charitreya Hejjegalu (Humanity), Kaadu Dariya Sollu (Criticism).
Tayenjam Bijoykumar Singh
Tayenjam Bijoykumar Singh, an engineer by profession, was born in 1957 in Imphal. He writes short stories, poems and non-fiction in English and Manipuri. He has four books to his credit, two Manipuri short story collections and two books in English ‘Manipur Trilogy’ (English translation of Ratan Thiyam’s Manipuri Plays) and ‘Ramu Prasad’s Angel (short story collection). His winning entry in the Sulekha.com-Penguin Online Writing Contest appears in Blogprint, an anthology of winning entries published by Penguin Books. He received the Katha Award for translation in 2005.
He is an active member of North East Writers’ Forum.
The Storywallahs: A mad bunch of dreamers who believe that stories are oxygen for the soul and that stories have the power to makes us more imaginative are reviving the tradition of oral storytelling. They can be found spreading the joy of stories and leaving behind a trail of smiles and happiness wherever they go. They have told stories under a tree, next to a lake, in a garage and under the stars and now they are coming with their ‘bag of stories from around the world’ to the Bangalore Literature Festival.
One of Hindi cinema’s most beautiful and stylish actresses, Tisca Chopra has trained with theatre greats like Naseeruddin Shah and Ferozi Abbas Khan. She got her big break with Aamir Khan’s Taare Zameen Par for which she won several national and international awards. Apart from being a regular on stage, she is also a favourite with advertisers, endorsing brands like Tanishq,Titan Eyewear, Olay, Horlicks and Kellogg’s. She is currently starring in the Indian franchise of the hit American series 24,being produced by Anil Kapoor. She is also developing a number of film scripts with her pilot-author husband, Sanjay Chopra.
Usha K. R.
Usha K R has been writing fiction in English for over three decades now. She began by writing short stories, which were published in various Indian magazines and newspapers. Her short story, Sepia Tones won the Katha Award for Creative Writing in English. Usha K R is the author of the novels ‘Monkey-man’ (2010/ Penguin India), ‘A Girl and a River’ (2007/Penguin India), ‘The Chosen’ (2003/Penguin India) and ‘Sojourn’ (1998/EastWest Books). Her novels have been listed for several awards including the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, the Crossword Award, the Man Asia and the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature. ‘A Girl and a River’ won the Vodafone Crossword Award, 2007. ‘Monkey-man’ was short listed for the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature 2012.
Vani Mahesh has a Masters degree in computer science from the US but always nurtured a desire to retell the exciting stories from Hindu Puranas. A consultant writer with Amar Chitra Katha where she scripts stories from the Hindu texts, her books include Tales of Creation – stories from Brahma Purana, A Kingdom for His Love and Saptarshi – the Seven Supreme Sages. A retelling of Shiva Purana for children is due for release next year. She is also the founder of EasyLib.com, the first online library in India.
Vasant Shetty is a software professional and is part of Banavasi Balaga, a think tank operating from Bengaluru that focuses on Mother Tongue based education reforms, Linguistic reforms in Kannada, Kannada centric Consumer movement and Language Planning initiatives. Vasant is also a columnist with Udayavani Kannada daily where he writes a weekly column called “Kannada Jagattu” which primarily talks about languages, language movements, language reforms across the world and tries to juxtapose those learning’s with Kannada. Vasant is involved with few Language Planning projects in Kannada.
Vasanthi Hariprakash is an independent anchor-moderator and media strategist. She is also the founder of a community platform called Pickle Jar that creates and curates film festivals and programs of social relevance that gave Bangalore city retrospectives of cinema greats like Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Smita Patil. Her past life include being a special correspondent with NDTV 24×7, documentary anchor of a South-Asia series on BBC World News, radio show host of a primetime breakfast show on Radio CIty 91.1 FM and a chief sub-editor at the New Indian Express. She hashtags on facebook as #womanwanderer as her work takes her sometimes to towns like in Chhattisgarh in central India to ideate as advisor for a tribal communities radio network Bultu Radio, or to places like Lucknow to bond with rural journalists on a pathbreaking rural newspaper called Gaon Connection. Between juggling random events and roles, she pretends to be a cool parent, as a result of which she gets asked to give gyan on parenting, career dilemmas of young people and such things that the nation wants to know.
Veeraraghav T. M.
Currently Associate Editor, The Hindu. Was Senior Editor and Prime time anchor with CNN IBN. Has been a TV Journalist since 1999 (Worked with NDTV 2000 – 2005; CNN IBN 2005 -2013). Fan of – Old Monk Rum, Enfield Bullet, The Beatles.
Venita Coelho worked in the TV industry as a writer and director. She is also a painter. She has written three books so far, Soap! Writing and Surviving Television in India (non-fiction), Dungeon Tales (fiction) and The Washer of the Dead: A Collection of Ghost Stories (fiction).
Venita had begun her career with UTV on DD. She had written the award-winning soap Trikaal and written the script for Dharma Productions’ We are Family.
Along with this she has also written children’s plays, documentaries, ad films and multimedia stage shows.
Dr Vijay Nagaswami, a psychiatrist, couple therapist and writer has lived and worked in Chennai all his life. His experience as a couple therapist for thirty years drew him to find a wider audience and he started writing books on the theme of relationships. Since 2002, five of his books have been published and been enthusiastically received by the reading public. His sixth book, titled ‘To D or Not to D : Working towards an amicable divorce’ is due to be launched this year. He also lectures on the subject of psychotherapy and conducts workshops for individuals and couples on personal relationship management.
Bangalore-based historian Vikram Sampath is the author of three acclaimed works of non-fiction “Splendours of Royal Mysore: the untold story of the Wodeyars”, “My name is Gauhar Jaan!- the life and times of a musician” and “Voice of the Veena: S Balachander, a biography”. His book on Gauhar Jaan won him several laurels including the Sahitya Akademi’s first Yuva Puraskar for English Literature and the ARSC International Award for Excellence in Historical Research in New York. Vikram is a visiting Fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg in Berlin and the University of Queensland, Australia. He served the Government of India’s Ministry of Culture as Executive Director of the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA), Southern Regional Centre and is currently the Director of the Symbiosis School of Media and Communication (SSMC) Bangalore. He is the Founder of the country’s first online digital repository for vintage gramophone records of the country called Archive of Indian Music (AIM) and is the Director of the Bangalore Literature Festival (BLF). He serves on several Government Committees like the Karnataka Knowledge Commission, Karnataka Tourism Vision Group and the Prasar Bharati Archives Core group. Vikram was among the 4 Artists and Writers selected by the President of India for an In-Residence Programme at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in March 2015. A trained Carnatic vocalist under several eminent Gurus, he writes regularly for newspapers and magazines on a wide variety of subjects.
Vikram Sridhar is a performance storyteller and theatre practitioner based in Bangalore. He has been working with a number of theatre groups across India for about a decade now is the co-founder Tahatto , a Bangalore-based theatre group. Tahatto performs regularly in Banagalore and in festivals across India. He has volunteered and worked with different organisations in the conservation space and also consults and works with organisations in the social sector. He combines the three in his storytelling to make a difference. Around the Story Tree is his initiative to reach out to children and adults from different backgrounds through storytelling, using stories and folk tales in a contemporary form as a strong medium for conservation to connect listeners to their environment. To know more about his work, see facebook.com/AroundTheStoryTree
Vimala Rangachar has been associated with fine arts and performing arts conservation movement of Karnataka for many years. She holds multiple positions of Chairperson of the Craft Council of Karanataka, Founder Member and President of M.E.S Institutions, President of the Natya Institute of Kathak and Choreography, President of the M.E.W.S Ladies Club, Malleshwaram, Bangalore, heading M.E.S Kalavedi, President of the Seva Sadan Orphanage, Hon. Secretary of the ADA Rangamandira, Committee Member, Gandhi Center for Science and Human Values- Bharathiya Vidya Bhavan. She is the daughter of Sri SK Ramanuja Iyengar and Ammanniamma.
Vishwas Mudagal is a Bangalore based author and a successful serial entrepreneur & CEO. Storytelling is his passion and he has taken it up as his parallel career. He has become a best-selling sensation and a youth icon in India after the spectacular success of his debut novel ‘Losing My Religion.’ He is also the CEO and co-founder of GoodWorkLabs, one of the fastest growing technology firms in the industry.
More about him at www.vishwasmudagal.com
Volga is the pen name of Popuri Lalitha Kumari. She has worked as a lecturer in Telugu at VSR & NVR College, Tenali, and as a senior executive for Usha Kiron Movies, Hyderabad. She was the executive president of Asmita Resource Centre for Women from 1991 to 1997. Among her works are the novels Sweccha(1994), Sahaja (1995), Manavi (1998), Kanniti keratala vennela (1999), Gulabilu (2000), and Rajakiya kathalu (1993), Prayogam (1995).
Poet, editor, music and cinema aficionado, Yatindra Mishra has four collections of Hindi
poetry to his credit- Yada-Kada, Ayodhya Tatha Anya Kavitayein, Dyorhi Par Aalaap
and Vibhas. He has also written about the life and work of thumri singer Girija Devi, danseuse Sonal Mansingh and shehnai maestro Bismillah Khan. Translation of his writing Girija, Ayodhya series of poems, Vibhas, Yaar Julahey &Meelon Se Din have been well received.
He has also translated the 12th century Lingayat mystic poet Akka Mahadevi’s poems titled
Bhairavi. Recently he has published a book about hundred years of Hindi Cinema which
deals about the authentic analysis of cinema’s musical journey titled ‘Humsafar’. He is
recipient of many awards for his literary contributions, including Raza Award, Bharat
Bhushan Agarwal Smriti Puraskar, Bharteeya Bhasha Parishad Yuva Puraskar &
Parampara Rituraj Samman. Currently writing a book on the life and musical journey of
playback singer Lata Mangeshkar. He lives in Ayodhya.
Zac O’Yeah is the Indo-Swedish author of popular comic thrillers Once Upon a Time in Scandinavistan (2010) and Mr. Majestic! (2013) and eleven other books, and he has been translated into several languages. His latest detective novel Hari, a Hero for Hire (PanMacmillan 2015) was hailed by leading Swedish national daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter as a “classic”, described by bestselling novelist Ashok Banker as “one of the best crime novels set in India written by anyone”. He worked in the theatre and music business in Sweden until he retired early, at 25, to come to India. His books range from bestselling detective fiction to history and travelogue, and he has also translated Indian literature into Swedish. As a veteran travel writer, he is a frequent contributor to National Geographic Traveller magazine, and also a columnist with The Hindu BusinessLine and an influential literary critic. Download his updates from www.zacoyeah.com
Zhang Su Li
Zhang Su Li is a copywriter and a traveller with no sense of direction. Her first book, “A backpack and a bit of luck” made it into the Top 10 bestseller list in Borders Kuala Lumpur, and was shortlisted for Travel Narrative of the Month by Borders Singapore. Her second book is an anthology called “Sini Sana, travels around Malaysia”. Su Li’s travel stories all start the same way – not knowing where she’s heading.