Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship

Class 1 - Profile of the Fellows

Anand Shah – Vice President-India and South Asia Practice, Albright Stonebridge Group

Anand Shah is a vice president in ASG’s India and South Asia practice, where he helps clients manage both short-term challenges and long-term growth opportunities. Mr. Shah brings over 15 years of experience working across the private and social sectors and has significant experience building and growing businesses in India. Before joining ASG, Mr. Shah led global strategy for new ventures at BMW Group on urban impact and autonomous mobility. He also was an advisor and manager at Audi AG in the Social Innovation department, where he applied engineering, design, and manufacturing techniques to sustainable, urban innovation. Mr. Shah founded and served as CEO of Saravajal, a technology and market-based provider of clean water to rural villages and urban settlements in Gujarat, India, and he holds several patents in drinking water distribution technologies. In addition, Mr. Shah helped establish Ahmedabad University and has worked extensively in India on policy in higher education, solar energy and urban infrastructure. Mr. Shah was the the founding CEO of the Piramal Foundation and a co-founder of Teach for India. He also was a co-founder and executive director of Indicorps, a non-profit organization that connects the Indian diaspora with opportunities to contribute to India’s development. He holds an A.B. in evolutionary biology from Harvard University and studied science, ethics and society at the California Institute of Technology. Mr. Shah is proficient in Hindi and Gujarati. He is based in Washington, D.C. Anand is a TEDIndia fellow. He is also a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Sarvajal

Anand calls his project "Sarvajal", meaning "water for all" in Sanskrit. Sarvajal pioneered a rural franchising model to help small entrepreneurs set up businesses to promote and provide affordable access to safe drinking water in villages across India. Sarvajal has also developed several innovations in water delivery, including a cloud-connected "water ATM" that places a clean water source within reach and available 24/7. The project aims to (1) create a fully-market based model to finance local drinking water solutions, (2) use technology to monitor, manage, and ensure delivery of service, and (3) encourage "beyond-the-grid" thinking in last mile water innovation. Sarvajal serves 100,000 litres of clean drinking water daily in over 6 states and has created 400+ jobs that encourage safe water practices in local communities. More information can be found on: www.sarvajal.com

Anuj Poddar – Sr. Executive Vice President, Viacom18

Anuj Poddar is a member of the Leadership Team at Viacom18. Anuj spearheaded the formation of Viacom18, its foray into mass entertainment with Colors and architected its very successful journey of becoming one of India’s leading media and entertainment conglomerates. He also set-up the company’s operations in USA and UK and has led strategy for MTV Networks Asia Prior to joining Viacom18, he has had over a decade of myriad professional experience in strategy consulting, mergers & acquisitions advisory and assurance with Arthur Andersen and KPMG, besides running his own entrepreneurial venture. In all his pursuits, he brings to fore a unique blend of business acumen, diverse experience and deep insight into human and consumer behaviour that enable him to build and run strong successful businesses. He serves as a Non-Executive Director on the Board of Bajaj Electricals Ltd. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen Centre's Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and member of Aspen Global Leadership Network, a member of BMW Foundation's World Young Leaders’ Forum and has been on the Governing Council of CII-Young Indians. Anuj has schooled in Mumbai, India and Michigan, USA and is a rank-holding Chartered Accountant. Anuj lives with his family in Mumbai, India. 

Leadership project/venture: Vocational Skills Courses

Anuj's project aimed to set up a vocational skills training course for unemployed youth from under-privileged backgrounds. The courses imparted skills related to the hospitality and retail industries. While the initial project set-up was championed by Anuj in 2008 under the aegis of the Young Indians (Yi) body, Yi continued to run it for 3 years. During this period, overall 350 under-privileged youth were enrolled and trained.

Govindraj Ethiraj – Co-Founder, Ping Digital Broadcast, Boom Live and IndiaSpend
Govindraj is a television & print journalist and Founder-Editor of Boom Live, a next generation television news initiative. Boom sits on Ping Digital Broadcast Network, a digital to satellite television Network Company co-founded by him in the news, utility and knowledge space. He is also Founder-Editor of the award-winning www.indiaspend.org & www.factchecker.in, a twin public interest journalism effort that uses data to tell stories. IndiaSpend is a member of the Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN). He also anchors seasonal shows on Indian news television – the current one being the weekly `Policy Watch’ on public service broadcaster Rajya Sabha or RS TV. And most recent being Bottom Line on Headlines Today - and writes for newspapers like Business Standard. Previously, he was Founder-Editor in Chief of Bloomberg TV India, a 24-hours business news service launched out of Mumbai in 2008 and a partnership between Bloomberg LLP and the UTV Group in India. Prior to setting up Bloomberg TV, he worked with Business Standard newspaper as Editor (New Media) with a specific mandate of integrating the newspaper’s news operations with its digital or web platform. Before that, Govindraj spent five years with television channel CNBC-TV18 where he worked from near start-up point and actively drove most of the channels programming growth and expansion initiatives. Prior to television, he worked in print in The Economic Times, Business World and Business India magazines. He has been a career business journalist who has reported and written on Indian business for the last 24 years. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and moderator for the Aspen Global Leadership Network. 

Leadership project/venture: India Spend

IndiaSpend addresses an important gap in the public discourse and debates that take place in India, particularly in the context of governance and accountability. IndiaSpend.com uses data to tell stories in areas like healthcare, education, infrastructure, women's issues and child development as well as does Fact Checks on statements that those in public life make, particularly when there are issues of governance involved. This helps not just improve the quality of debate but also, more importantly, empowers young Indians to ask the right questions on issues that matter to them and their future. IndiaSpend is now available on multiple platforms like Dow Jones (and by extent Wall Street institutional) Yahoo News and large Indian newspapers like Hindustan Times and Business Standard and public service television stations like Rajya Sabha TV. Many senior journalists are increasingly collaborating with this platform for their articles and columns. IndiaSpend is available on social media via Twitter & Facebook. It also launched a spin-off initiative called www.factchecker.in

Karti P. Chidambaram – Member, All India Congress Committee
Karti is a politician from Chennai, India. He is a member of the All India Congress Committee. He was selected by the American Council of Young Political Leaders (ACYPL) to observe the U.S. Presidential Elections, 2004. Karti has been politically and socially active in his home state of Tamil Nadu. He has played an active and crucial role as a campaigner in all state & national general elections since 1996. He is an eloquent speaker in English and Tamil. He plays an active role in development of sports and participates in select Management Committees of Cricket, Tennis & Athletics. He is one of the founders of the Chennai chapter of Young Entrepreneurs Organization, a worldwide association of young entrepreneurs. Karti has co-founded an online social forum, “Karuthu” (means opinion), which promotes freedom of speech. He is a founder-director of Chess Management Services Private Limited, a Company actively involved in Corporate Governance and Legal Compliance Management. He holds a Business Degree from the University of Texas, Austin and a Law degree from Cambridge University, England. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: India Interview Training

Karti is working with one of the largest companies in India, Infosys, to bring lecturers to local schools to instruct students on how to get through an interview process. He is also discussing the possibility of getting additional lecturers from ICEC Bank. Students will go through six months of employment training. At this point, Karti is not focused on setting up internships with companies, but this might be a future addition to the program.

Minal Vazirani – Founder, Saffronart
Minal is the Founder of Saffronart, where she is responsible for managing all day-to-day activities of the business and planning the strategic direction of the company. Saffronart has become the largest source, globally, for modern and contemporary Indian art. At Saffronart, Minal has curated, planned and organized exhibitions of Indian art in India and internationally. Minal is a regular panelist and guest speaker at Indian contemporary art events. Minal is on the board of advisors to the Friends of Sir JJ School of Art Trust and at Time Out Magazine in India. Prior to founding Saffronart, Minal was a management consultant with Booz, Allen & Hamilton in Mumbai where she worked across several industries in the US, South East Asia and India. Before her tenure at Booz Allen, Minal was with Andersen Consulting in Mumbai and Los Angeles. Minal received her MBA from INSEAD in France, where she received the Sasakawa Fellowship, and her B.S. in Chemical Engineering with a minor in Art History & Indian History from the University of California, Los Angeles. Minal has been an active collector of Indian Contemporary Art over the last 14 years. She is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Art and women issues 

In this project four Artists in a year go to their communities and work with local crafts people, especially women and girls. They create art works to highlight issues that need to be addressed particularly around economically impoverished communities. The works are exhibited and then sold with proceeds going toward those communities.

Mukti Datta – Managing Director, Panchachuli Women Weavers, Dena Hospital
Mukti is the Managing Director of Dena Hospital. Prior to that she was the Secretary, Jan Jagran Samiti in Almora, Uttaranchal. Mukti initiated a weaving project for women that started with ten women and two trainers, from the leprosy rehab centre in one village. The project grew organically to over 700 women trained that were then able to make marketeable shawls and accessories. The Panchachuli Women Weavers transformed into a private company with women as shareholders and on the board of directors, with upmarket hotels in India buying retail outlets, and a growing market in the US and Europe. This economically self-sustained industry is the largest in the hills of Uttaranchal and functions with a credit limit from a bank. The second institution Mukti launched is the Dena Hospital, which today is the best-equipped secondary health care facility in the state. In addition, she also runs an intermediate college for girls, where 126 girls from rural families get the opportunity for vocational training after they graduate (nurses, accountants, weavers) as well five primary and two junior high schools. Her next plan is to start a women's movement in Uttaranchal to empower women politically, socially and economically. She is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Empowerment of Rural Women

Mukti’s project will empower thousands of underprivileged women of the Himalayas region. She started a women's movement in Uttaranchal which empowers women politically, socially and economically. Mukti will take her working experience and translate it into a large area population.

Mukund Rajan – Chairman - Tata Global Sustainability Council, Chief Ethics Officer, Head - International Operations
Mukund is the Chairman of Tata Global Sustainability Council, Chief Ethics Officer and Head of International Operations. Previously, he was the Brand Custodian and Member of Group Executive Council, Tata Sons. Rajan joined Tata through the Tata Administrative Service (TAS) in January 1995. He was assigned to the office of the then Chairman of Tata Sons, Mr Ratan Tata, in 1996, where he served for twelve years. In January 2008, Rajan was appointed Managing Director of Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra). He subsequently moved to Tata Capital in 2010, where in his last role, he was the Head of Private Equity Advisory and Managing Partner of the advisory team of the Tata Opportunities Fund, a private equity fund sponsored by the company. Rajan has served on the boards of various Tata companies including Tata Teleservices, Tata Communications, Roots Corporation and Piem Hotels. He was also President of the Association of Unified Access Service Providers of India, one of the principal telecom industry associations in India. He currently serves as a Non-Executive Director on the boards of Lakshmi Machine Works and Tata SIA Airlines and is a member of the National Advisory Boards of AIESEC India and ENACTUS. In 2007, the World Economic Forum honoured Rajan as a Young Global Leader. Rajan graduated from the Bachelor of Technology program at the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi in 1989. He received a Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford University, where he completed a Masters and Doctorate in International Relations. His doctoral dissertation titled “Global Environmental Politics – India and the North-South Politics of Global Environmental Issues” was published by the Oxford University Press in 1996. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Renu Sharma – Principal Secretary, Delhi Government
Renu is currently the Principal Secretary, Delhi Government. Previously, she was an officer of the Indian Administrative Service posted in Mizoram. Prior to this, from 2012-2015 she was the Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy of India in Brussels which looks after all work related to the European Union, Belgium and Luxembourg. A graduate from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi, she has a M.Phil degree in Political Science from Jawaharlal Nehru University and a diplome from l’Institute International d’Administration Publique, ENA, Paris. She was selected as the international scholar in the prestigious Fondation Nationale d’Entreprise et Performance, Paris in 1999-2000 to work on the project l’Exercise du Pouvoir dans l’Administration et l’Entreprise Privee (management and administration in public and private enterprises). From 2000-2006, as the Secretary to the Chief Minister, Delhi, she also headed the ‘Bhagidari’ (Citizen-Government Partnership) initiative which won the United Nations Public Service Award 2005. Renu was associated with the writing of the first Human Development Report 2006 for Delhi. She has worked in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry from 2006-2011, both as a Director and later as a Joint Secretary. In her service period spanning more than 25 years she has held diverse portfolios relating to district and municipal administration, finance, taxation, commerce, industry, personnel and good governance. She is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Manual for the Implementation of the Right to Information Act

Renu’s project developed a manual within the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion to facilitate the smooth implementation of the newly enacted Right to Information Act, 2005 in India - an act which opens doors for the citizens to access the information available with government and government organizations. The project benefits the Indian people and the administrators who use the information.

Sanjay Chhabra – Partner, Archer and Angel
Sanjay is a partner in the law firm of Archer & Angel based in the firm’s New Delhi office. Sanjay is a member of the firm’s corporate practice and the head of the Regulatory Affairs and Real Estate practice as well as the Americas Practice Group. He has over 10 years of experience working on corporate transactions and has advised a number of multinational corporations and institutions on structuring their investments into India and other cross border transactions including acquisitions, joint ventures and strategic partnering arrangements. Sanjay has recently co-authored a book on doing business in India, recently published by Sweet & Maxwell. He advises clients such as Yahoo Inc, Citrix Systems Inc., AMN Health Care Inc, Government of Singapore, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), Compuware Pte Ltd., Creative Technologies, Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance, MTU Asia Pacific. He also acts as counsel and sits on committees for various non-profit organizations working to better economy, sports and culture in India. These organizations include India Youth Soccer Association and Indian Society for Breast Health & Research. Sanjay is a member of the Sub-Committee on Benchmarking of the International Trademark Association (INTA). He is also a member of the International Franchise Lawyers Association (IFLA), Inter Pacific Bar Association (IPBA), and Bar Council of India. He has previously been unanimously elected Executive Member of Lawyers Associated Worldwide (L.A.W) for the Asia Pacific Region. Sanjay has obtained his Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) and Bachelor of Arts (majoring in Political Science) from University of Delhi in India and has previously worked with a leading law firm in Boston, United States where he advised various US corporations on the legal aspects of doing business in India. Sanjay is also currently the President of the Resident Welfare Association of a pocket in a colony -Vasant Kunj in New Delhi with approximately 500 families residing in the area. This area has a history of problems with essential needs such as water and power supply not available for many of the residents for many years. Sanjay has successfully worked along with Government departments to resolve a number of issues in a very short span of time. He has also undertaken a pilot project of water harvesting to conserve rain water in the pocket. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Water harvesting in a pocket of Vasant Kunj area, New Delhi 

Over the years the population of the Vasant Kunj area in Delhi has grown and tube wells ensuring the water supply were dug throughout the area. This consistent digging has led to falling water levels and near depletion. Sanjay’s project aims to harvest water thus recharging the water table and improving the environment of the area. Cooperation with government agencies and adjustments in the resident’s consumption habits are necessary to ensure success.

Sanjay Jaju – Joint Secretary, Government of India and Director-Admin & Finance, National Highways & Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd. (IAS)
Sanjay comes from Indian Administrative Service and currently is the Joint Secretary, GOI and Director in Admin & Finance of National Highways & Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd. Prior to this he was the IT Secretary to Government of Andhra Pradesh, Information Technology & Communications Department. During his career with the government, he has been an ardent advocate of Information technology for development. Sanjay is a post graduate Mechanical Engineer and a cost accountant by background. An innovative project ‘Hyderabad First” of the Municipal Corporation of Hyderabad initiated by him won the Golden Icon e-Governance Award of the Government of India under the process reengineering in professional category and also bagged the award “India’s Best e-Content” in the category of e-Governance from 25 states by the Manthan-AIF Award Grand Jury 2006, New Delhi. During his previous tenure as Collector & Dist. Magistrate, West Godavari in India, a rural e-governance initiative e-seva pioneered by him was won the Gender ICT Award and “Tony Zeitoun ICT Stories Competition” of the Global Knowledge Partnerships at the WSIS-Geneva and also won a nomination for the Stockholm Challenge Award for the year 2004. The project pioneered a self-help based e governance model to bring technology to serve the poor. During his previous stint as Municipal Commissioner, Visakhapatnam, a comprehensive facility “Saukaryam” was completed to improve delivery of the civic services and has become a flagship project providing immense benefits to citizens. The project won many international awards including the Cyber City Award of UNDP. While working in a primary education project, a project titled ‘Headstart’ for computer-enabled education was initiated and completed by him. The last seven years of his professional career have allowed him opportunities for evolving and developing ICT4D projects. This has also helped him to maintain live contacts with the projects taken up both by government and non-government organizations in India. He has made presentations on e-governance all over the globe including at WSIS-Geneva and in the World Summit on Sustainable Development held in Johannesburg. He has participated in international and National Conferences on the development of information Society. He had written many papers that have been published and awarded in National and International journals and publications. He has recently been awarded e.gov Champion award by DataQuest Magazine. He has also completed his Post Graduate diploma in Management recently. His wife, Dr Jyoti works for the World Health Organization. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Spreading education resources more evenly across the world

This project academically and financially sponsors Indian students from government schools in grades 10th and above, pushing them to achieve in school and pursue higher education. Plans to scale up the effort to a community level are in the works.

Sanjay Jayavarthanavelu – Wholetime Director, Lakshmi Machine Works Ltd.
Sanjay is the Wholetime Director of Lakshmi Machine Works Ltd. He holds an MBA from Philadelphia University, USA. Lakshmi Machine Works Ltd. is headquartered in Coimbatore, India and is one among the three in the world manufacturing the entire range of textile spinning machinery. He is also a Director of many companies of diversified products in the group. The group turnover for 2006 is about Rs.1600 cores. He is presently the Chairman of the Confederation of Indian Industry, (CII) Tamil Nadu Council & Chairman of the India-ITME Exhibition Society, Mumbai. He was the immediate past Chairman of Textile Machinery Manufacturers Association of India, Mumbai (TMMA). He is a Member of the Council of Administration of the South India Textile Research Association and a Member of the Board of Governors of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Institute of Textile Management, Coimbatore. He is a Member of a Charity Trust which runs a 450 bedded hospital, an Arts College and a Higher Secondary School. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Masonic Children’s Hospital

Sanjay aims to improve the lives of children through education outreach programs and by providing quality healthcare. Children within a 200 KM radius around Coimbatore will benefit.

Shivinder Mohan Singh – Executive Vice Chairman, Fortis Healthcare Ltd.
Shivinder is an entrepreneur who aspires to change the way Healthcare is delivered in India and the world. He is currently the Executive Vice Chairman of Fortis Healthcare Limited, a leading integrated healthcare delivery provider in the Asia-Pacific region, driven by a vision to save and enrich lives through clinical excellence. Fortis healthcare spans across primary healthcare, speciality day care, diagnostics and hospitals across Asia with over 66 healthcare facilities and 240 diagnostic centers spanning across the length and breadth in India. His significant contribution to the Indian Healthcare sector has been widely acknowledged and his strategy for Fortis and its execution has been recognised by the Harvard Business School as a case study. In his previous roles, Shivinder, created the foundation of the culture of Fortis by leading the first hospital at Mohali as its COO. He also led the development of Fortis through its initial years by conceptualizing its strategy and growth through various Greenfield projects and acquisitions. He was instrumental in the group’s effort for the acquisition of Escorts Heart Institute and Research Centre Ltd (EHIRCL) in 2005; Malar Hospital in Chennai in 2008 and the Wockhardt acquisition in 2009. He has conceptualized, designed and built the most modern hospital in India and Asia, the Fortis Memorial Research Institute, a destination hospital in Asia. Shivinder is also one of the principal promoters of Religare Enterprises Limited and SRL Limited, India’s largest diagnostic network. He is actively involved in many industry bodies and various new initiatives. Shivinder is on the Steering Committee of Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI). He is a board member of Aspen India and a Governing Council Member of All India Management Association (AIMA). He also chair’s Ficci’s Committee on Culture. He is one of the Founders and the current President of NATHEALTH (the Healthcare Federation of India) a body that serves to become the industry’s voice; shaping the future of the Indian healthcare industry. Shivinder is a board member for AIESEC, the world's largest student-run organisation and a platform for young people to explore and develop their leadership potential for a positive impact on society. He was recently nominated as a Young Global Leader2013 by the World Economic Forum. Shivinder has done his MBA with specialisation in health sector management from the Duke University Business School, USA. He is an alumnus of Doon School and an Honours Graduate in Mathematics from St. Stephens College, Delhi. Shivinder is also on the board of visitors of Duke University Business School. While healthcare is a passion for Shivinder, his dream is to contribute in building a vibrant India. He is actively involved in initiatives focusing on social change, including the ‘Little Hearts’ programme, that supports life saving cardiac surgeries to the less privileged children. He is also involved in a number of initiatives that focus on a better future for the girl child and institutionalizing delivery and education. He likes sports such as football and tennis and enjoys watching films. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture:
(1) Fortis Foundation HIV/AIDS Program (2) Treating children with life-threatening diseases

Shivinder pursued two projects. His first project implemented a comprehensive education program to sensitize all employees of Fortis about HIV/AIDS, across its hospitals and group companies. The projects also motivated these peer educators to reach out into the community and greater society to educate on issues of HIV/AIDS. The results were overwhelming with upwards of 75 percent of employees being covered via the program. Shivinder’s second project provides treatment for children with life-threatening diseases. Shivinder has tied up with many institutions, for instance: Rotary Club of Chandigarh and Afghan Red Crescent Society. The latest in these developments is his collaboration with The Being Human Foundation (started and run by Salman Khan) to treat children under the age of 5 who have congenital heart issues that are life-threatening.

Sudha Iyer – Managing Director, Skilin Learning Technologies Pvt. Ltd.
Sudha has two MS degrees in Molecular Biology and Genetics and a PhD in Health Education. After spending 13 years in the US studying and working in institutions like The Johns Hopkins University and Sinai Hospital, she returned to India to be an entrepreneur. She has been in the field of technology enabled learning for the past 15 years, working with industry and colleges and schools in training and skilling. Sudha now serves as the Managing Director of Skilin, which is a social enterprise that focuses on skilling youth using technology and self-learning. As a member for the Governing Council of Young Indians, (Yi, CII), Sudha served as the National Chair for Youth Affairs for two and a half years. She conceptualized and rolled out the Yi Bridge program, working with students in schools and colleges in the country. She was also the Yi National Chair for IT, and Health. As the Chair for Rural Initiatives, she piloted and designed a career counseling workshop, which is being given to hundreds of school students in India. She is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Aspen India's Leadership Initiative and a moderator for Ananta Aspen.

Leadership project/venture: Srishti Annam 

To address the hunger issue in India, Sudha Iyer committed to feeding at least 150 people per day for 100 days in Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh, India. The initial phase of the "Srishti Annam" (i.e.: "Together We Can") project was so successful that Sudha and the organization decided to scale up the project. So far over 370,000 meals have been served. In the next five years, Sudha hopes to build and sustain 2000 feeding centres across the country that will each feed 50 persons a day. Altogether, the goal is to feed 1,00,000 persons a day. In addition, Annam seeks not only to feed the poor, but to train, counsel, rehabilitate and employ them, so that ultimately they can bring themselves out of poverty. As part of their commitment they already train people in catering and food service, and in food production. For more information see: www.srishtiannam.org. 

Sumeeta Banerji – Assistant Country Director and Head (Governance), United Nations Development Programme
Sumeeta is a social development professional and currently Heads the Democratic Governance Program at the United Nations Development Programme in India. She handles a portfolio of programmes providing technical support and policy advice to key Government of India Ministries on a wide range of governance themes including right to information, access to justice, capacity development for local governance and decentralised planning, human development, and rights based social security interventions. Prior to this, she was leading a 'Community of Practice' (COP) on Poverty Reduction for the United Nations in India. Her role involved bringing together communities of development practitioners from across India, including government, private sector, civil society, academia and donors, to discuss, offer solutions and prepare action agendas on issues related to work, employment, livelihoods and entrepreneurship for the poor. She was able to engage the government and other key stakeholders in addressing implementation bottlenecks through action work undertaken by the CoP. Sumeeta also organized a second all-India CoP on 'Microfinance' in October 2006. This initiative, which is part of the UN's Knowledge Management Partnership Initiative, has found acceptance amongst Government and development practitioners in India and is now in the process of being rolled out to other countries around the world. Prior to joining the UN in India, Sumeeta spent several years with the Canadian International Development Agency leading projects in the areas of governance, human rights, child rights, inclusive education, livelihoods, HIV/AIDS etc., focusing on building the capacity of local partners in addressing concerns of the poor in these sectors. Sumeeta did her Undergraduate Degree in History from the Lady Shri Ram College in New Delhi and her Masters in International Relations from the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna. She is also a linguist and has studied German, French and Spanish. She lives with her husband and two children in New Delhi. She is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Sharing in the Private Sector

This project works with various stakeholders, such as CII, developing a comprehensive strategy for sharing of experiences and lessons, amongst India’s industry and private sector, on effective initiatives in the area of employability and skill development for the unorganized sector. The purpose of the project is to disseminate and replicate practical and market-based models in order to work on solutions addressing the “skills famine.”

Sumita Ghose, Founder and Managing Director, Rangsutra
Sumita Ghose is the founder and managing director of Rangsutra, a social enterprise which works for socio economic development in rural India by engaging both: the community and the market. Rangsutra is owned by over two thousand artisans- most of whom are rural women. Rangsutra provides design, marketing, technical and organizational support needed to make crafts and allied rural industries into viable enterprises, so that they provide regular village based employment to rural artisans. Prior to setting up Rangsutra in 2006, Sumita lived and worked in different parts of rural India for many years working with rural communities for social change and economic development. Sumita has a Masters degree in Economics and in Conflict Resolution. She is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network. She has been the recipient of several awards, including a Fulbright Fellowship, the latest being the Nari Shakti Puraskar, awarded by the President of India, on 8th March 2016. She is a Yoga practitioner and a certified Yoga teacher. 

Leadership project/venture: Social Empowerment

Sumita is creating a model for social empowerment and employment through crafts and organic farming. She plans to build upon existing skill sets of artisans/farmers, give them increased access to design, technology and markets, and access to better tools. Additionally she intends to insure that the 1500 artisans/farmers in the collective will reinvest some of their profits back into their collective so that they can have access to health insurance, education, etc. The project is different in that it is not primarily established to increase profits, but to build the social welfare system for the members of the collective, and to ensure that the artisans are true stakeholders in the company.

Vishakha Mulye – Executive Director, ICICI Bank
Vishakha is the Executive Director of ICICI Bank. She is presently the head of Wholesale Banking Group. Ms. Mulye is a qualified Chartered Accountant joined the ICICI Group in 1993 and has vast experience in the areas of strategy, treasury & markets, proprietary equity investing and management of long-term equity investments, structured finance, management of special assets and corporate & project finance. She led the team that planned and executed the merger of ICICI and ICICI Bank in 2002. From 2002 to 2005, she was responsible for the Bank’s structured finance and global markets businesses, and its financial institutions relationships. From 2005-2007, Ms. Mulye was the Group Chief Financial Officer of ICICI Bank. She was elevated to the Board of ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company in 2007. In 2009, she assumed leadership of ICICI Venture Funds Management Company as its Managing Director & CEO. She was selected as ‘Young Global Leader’ for the year 2007 by World Economic Forum. She has been conferred with the recognition for the “Most Powerful Women in Indian Business” by Business Today. She received the India CFO Award in 2006 from IMA for excellence in finance in a large corporate and CA Corporate Leader Award in 2008 from ICAI. In February 2012 she received the GR8! Women awards from ITA for her contribution as “an Eminent Personality in the field of Banking”. She is also a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Basic Education for India

Vishakha is looking to standardize the quality of the education people receive, to create a model that can be followed in each community when setting up a school. Her goal is to provide some incentive for people to go to graduate schools besides just having the basic education, perhaps by offering them job opportunities if they graduate.


Jesse Lentchner – CEO-Asia Pacific, BTIG
Jesse heads BTIG's Asian and Australian Regional Trading Operations. Before coming to BTIG, Lentchner held senior executive positions with Goldman Sachs. Most recently he was Co-Head of Execution Services for Asia. Prior to that, he was Managing Director, Head of Securities in India, where he built and ran the equities and fixed income businesses. Before moving to India, Lentchner was Head of Execution Services and Co-Head of the Equity Sales Trading Desk in Tokyo. Prior to his time with Goldman Sachs, Lentchner worked as an equity sales trader in Tokyo at Nomura and in Hong Kong and New York at W.I. Carr. He started his career trading fixed income for a Japanese bank in New York. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Phillipino Student Assistance

Jesse’s project grew out of a personal experience in which he and his wife supported a woman in the Philippines in her educational process so that she could go to medical school and get a degree. He is now setting up a fund and looking to identify candidates for individual underwriting to help advance them through the education system, so that they are encouraged to continue through graduate/medical school.

Prashant Khemka – Former Managing Director, CEO and CIO, Goldman Sachs Asset Management (India) Private Limited
Prashant is the former head of Emerging Markets Equity and the lead portfolio manager of the Global Emerging Markets Equity, India Offshore Equity and BRIC Equity strategies for Goldman Sachs Asset Management (GSAM). Prior to assuming this role, he spent seven years in Mumbai as head of the India Equity team. Prashant joined Goldman Sachs in 2000 as a member of the US Growth Equity team in GSAM, first as a research analyst, then as a portfolio manager and later as a senior portfolio manager and co-chair of the Investment Committee. He was named managing director in 2007. Prior to joining the firm, Prashant was an assistant portfolio manager in the Fundamental Strategies group at State Street Global Advisors. Prashant graduated with honors from Bombay University with a BE in Mechanical Engineering and earned an MBA in Finance from the Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt University, where he received the Matt Wigginton Leadership Award for outstanding performance in finance. He was awarded the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation in 2001 and is a fellow of The Aspen Institute, India. Prashant and his wife, Ritu, have a daughter and two sons. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Financial planning for weaker sections of society

This project facilitates planning for weaker sections of society - particularly the domestic staff and clerical staff - which do not have easy access to the financial system. The project takes a portion of the individuals’ income (7% employer, 7% employee) and sets it aside into a specific savings account. This amount would be invested into fixed deposits or other financial securities upon choice of the account holder.

Ravi Krishnan – Chief Administrative Officer, Goldman Sachs India
Ravi is the Chief Administrative Officer for Goldman Sachs in India. Along with the CEO & COO, he is responsible for the Firm's global business activities out of Bangalore & supports its domestic businesses in India. His specific responsibilities include, Risk management, Finance & regulatory and Corporate Services. He is the chair of the India Risk Committee and serves as a member on key business committees in India & Asia. Ravi is also a director on all operational entities of Goldman Sachs in India. Ravi’s other responsibilities include, directing the Firm's community engagement and corporate social responsibility efforts in India, & driving Government relationships in Bangalore. He joined Goldman Sachs in 1998 as a vice president in the Finance Division in Hong Kong, eventually becoming financial controller for Asia Pacific Ex-Japan in 2002. He relocated back to India in 2004 as the Chief Financial Officer and was largely responsible for setting up the Goldman Sachs office in Bangalore. He was named managing director in 2006. Prior to Joining Goldman Sachs, Ravi worked at other investment banks for five years and ran his own chartered accountancy firm. Ravi represents the firm at the AMCHAM (American Chamber of Commerce of India) & NASSCOM Product Council. Ravi has a BSc from Fergusson College, India, & is a fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Primary Health in Udaipur

Ravi is looking to support an organization near Udaipur that helps getting primary healthcare to residents. The organization teaches midwives and non-primary health care givers to administer basic health care to their patients. Ravi has already helped the organization to create a preliminary business plan to help get investors. The plan includes (1) building a school/training institute which can help train these non-clinical workers; (2) getting an organization like Acumen involved and committed to building funding for the project; (3) implementing the training.

Sandeep H. Patel – Managing Director of Investment Banking, Barclays Capital
Sandeep is a Managing Director of Investment Banking at Barclays Capital and global head of the firm’s agribusiness and bio-products advisory effort. Prior to joining Barclays Capital in 2009, Mr. Patel was a Managing Director at Goldman Sachs, where he spent ten years as a member of the M&A and Consumer/Retail groups in New York, and Head of Corporate Finance of Goldman Sachs India in Mumbai. Mr. Patel has extensive experience advising public and private companies, investors, and entrepreneurs across a range of industries, including consumer products, agriculture, energy, and chemicals, on their financing and M&A needs. Mr. Patel has a JD from Yale Law School, a MS from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a BA, summa cum laude, from Williams College where he was awarded the Grant Prize in Biological Sciences. He was a Fulbright Scholar to India, an editor of the Yale Law Journal and a Ford-Mellon Scholar. Mr. Patel has conducted research on environmental and agricultural issues in East Africa, India, and the Caribbean and has been a consultant to the Environmental Defense Fund and Natural Resources Defense Council. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Leadership project/venture: Child auto safety in India

Sandeep aims to reduce fatality rates of children in auto accidents by increasing the use of child restraints, raising awareness and increasing the availability of low cost but high quality devices.

Shobana Mani – Entrepreneur and Former Executive Director of New Markets, Goldman Sachs
Shobana is a tech entrepreneur and has recently moved to Silicon Valley from London, UK. She is currently the Co-Founder and CEO of an early stage start-up focused on helping entrepreneurs refine their elevator pitch through a web and mobile platform. Shobana began her career in 2002 at Goldman Sachs International in London. As an analyst she worked in the special execution group in the Investment Banking Division. As an Associate, she spent one year in the executive office at Goldman Sachs working with WTO member countries on financial services liberalization during the DOHA Development Trade Round. Subsequently, she moved to the Financing Group structured finance team structuring and executing bespoke financings for emerging market counterparties. As an Executive Director, she continued in this same role on the trading floor within the Fixed Income Division. While at Goldman Sachs, Shobana sat on the steering committee of the Goldman Sachs London Asian Professionals network and was the representative for the Investment Banking Division since 2002. She was also involved in mentorship and recruiting efforts. She is a member of the Evian Group international trade discussion group. In 2010 Shobana was hired as a Managing Director by Standard Bank Plc in London to replicate the bespoke financing initiative she developed at Goldman Sachs with a specific focus on Africa. Shobana received her master of science from the London School of Economics in law and accounting/finance. She studied finance for a year at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business. She earned her BA in international political economy from The George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs and spent one year focusing on international affairs at the London School of Economics. Her hobbies include dance, designing, and photography. She is a Fellow of the inaugural class of the Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network. Shobana is married to Gianni Lorenzato, a fellow entrepreneur and is a proud mother to Jasmita Serafina. 

Leadership project/venture: Social impact of craftsmanship

Shobana's project is focused on social impact in the fashion and design industry. From the perspective of India, this is through creating business channels for artisan work that is focused on design aesthetic which utilizes craftsmanship. From the perspective of the West, this is through creating channels in education for youth that show particular talent in design. Initially, her strategy is to participate in research initiatives where she can rely on her design skill set to visually draw interest to the cause.

V. Bunty Bohra – CEO, Goldman Sachs Services
Bunty is chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs Services in India. He is responsible for identifying opportunities to further integrate functions in Bengaluru and Singapore, in line with the firm's global office strategy. Bunty is a member of the Partnership Committee, Asia Pacific Management Committee, Asia Pacific Capital Committee, FedCom, the Global Recruiting Council and serves on the Pine Street Board of Directors. Bunty joined Goldman Sachs in 1996 in the J. Aron Currency and Commodities Division, where he traded commodities for four years in New York and London. He spent one year working on the development and launch of Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), an electronic derivatives exchange and trading platform, before becoming franchise manager of the Commodities and Futures Services business units. Prior to assuming his current role in 2009, Bunty was global head of the Structured Product Syndicate desk in the Mortgage Department of the Fixed Income, Currency and Commodities Division in New York. He was also co-head of the Structured Finance Group in the Americas. Bunty was named managing director in 2005 and partner in 2010. Bunty earned dual SB degrees in Chemical Engineering and Management Science from MIT in 1996. He is a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, serves on the Advisory Board of the MIT Sloan Finance Group, is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization and previously served on the Asia Society Corporate Diversity Council. He is a Fellow of the Inaugural Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and a member of Aspen Global Leadership Network. 

Leadership project/venture: Tutoring for illiterate girls in Jodhpur

This project seeks to tutor illiterate girls in Jodhpur in association with a local girls college


Fellows' Speak

Fellows in Action