Our Speakers

Karan RazdanKaran RazdanAn author

Karan Razdan is the author of two books. ‘Tantra and the Tantrika ‘ & ‘ The Secret Law of Blessing .’ He is a Spiritual and Motivational speaker. Attached are pictures of Karan Razdan speaking at various forums and functions, organised by NGO’s and private organisations. Recently addressed FICCI FLO. He is attached with Ashi Foundation, a NGO which empowers women and children. NIFAA, a NGO which promotes art and social activism in youth. He lectures students in various schools and colleges. Counsels people on issues related to mental well being and health. He is on the advisory board of IGNOU.

He has been practising the Buddhist philosophy since 2003.

Amit ShankarAmit ShankarAn Author

Author of 4 national bestsellers—Flight of the Hilsa, Chapter 11, Love is Vodka-A Shot Ain’t Enough and Café Latte, his work has represented contemporary Indian Literature at the Frankfurt and Beijing Book Fair in 2013 and 2014. With a knack of telling offbeat stories that delve into dysfunctional lives and complex relationships, his craft can be witnessed while he narrates trauma, tribulations and triumph from a women’s perspective. His fifth title, Uberlegen, has been just been released. Never Alone, Always Lonely, a compilation of his 50 poems in coffee table book format features top European and Indian artists interpreting his work using Photography and Panting.   

With an award-studded advertising career, his passion includes rock, blues, jazz and coffee.

A speaker at top management institutes and  Fortune 500 companies, he is the Founder of TGILF; India's only Regional Literature Festival and House of Lions- a brand consultancy.

Rakshanda JalilRakshanda JalilWriter, Critic and Literary Historian

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 (OUP, 2014); a biography of Urdu feminist writer Dr Rashid Jahan A Rebel and her Cause (Women Unlimited, 2014); a translation of The Sea Lies Ahead,Intizar Husain's seminal novel on Karachi (Harper Collins, 2015) and Krishan Chandar's partition novel Ghaddar (Westland, 2017); an edited volume of critical writings on Ismat called An Uncivil Woman (Oxford University Press, 2017); and most recently a literary biography of the Urdu poet Shahryar for Harper Collins. She runs an organization called Hindustani Awaaz, devoted to the popularization of Hindi-Urdu literature and culture. Her debut collection of fiction, Release & Other Stories, was published by Harper Collins in 2011, and received critical acclaim. She was awarded the Kaifi Azmi Award for her contribution to Urdu and her translation The Sea Lies Ahead won the KLF Peace Prize awarded by the Karachi Litfest and the German Embassy, and Runners-Up and Jury's Commendation for the Muse India Translation Award 2017. She received the First Jawad Memorial Prize for Urdu-Hindi Translation. She writes regularly for major newspapers such as Hindustan Times, Indian Express, The Hindu as well as magazines such as Outlook, Scroll, The Wire, etc.

Deepshikha SharmaDeepshikha Sharma

I am a 2000 Batch IRS officer with a mission to give all of myself to what I do. And over the years, from when I was a child to now, I have realized one thing, there is so much that holds us back. I have come a long way from the times I wrote my first paper on Feminism or tried to grapple with the Women's question during the course of M.Phil. And yet while in my mind space I have tried to fly past the hegemony of patriarchy, it's a difficult terrain to navigate in terms of the physical space we occupy. But all that changes when we tell and share our stories. That's the game changer- moving from Paradise Lost to  paradise regained.

Bijayalaxmi NandaBijayalaxmi NandaAssociate Professor, Department of Political Science

Dr. Bijayalaxmi Nanda is Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Miranda House. She is currently the Vice Principal of the college.

She received her Ph.D. from the Centre for Political Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Her research interests include gender, political theory and human rights. Her publications include, Discourse on Rights in India: Debates and Dilemmas (Co-editor), (Routledge, 2018), Sex-Selective Abortion and the State: Policies, Laws and Institutions in India (HarAnand, 2018), Understanding Social Inequality: Concerns of Human Rights, Gender and Environment (Macmillan, 2010) and Human Rights, Gender and Environment (Allied, 2006). She has numerous articles in reputed journals to her credit. She is currently working on the issues around declining child sex ratio, sex selection, gender, policy and governance. She is the general editor of Shakti Books, a series on writings of gender issues by Har Anand Publications.

She is a recipient of the ICSSR Doctoral fellowship and the Delhi University Vice Chancellor’s Teacher’s Excellence Award in 2017.

Rajat JainRajat JainAn engineer

Rajat is an engineering lead with Bloomberg LP based in their global HQ in NYC. For the past 7 years, Rajat has built world-class trading system applications for Bloomberg LP including solutions or position management and market making for 8k+ clients at the biggest financial institutions (400+) around the world.

Besides being passionate about fintech and electronic trading, Rajat is also the organizer of the Blockchain meetup at Bloomberg and an ardent follower of the startup space. Rajat graduated summa cum laude with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University in 2010.

Vinita Dawra NangiaVinita Dawra NangiaAssociate Editor with The Times of India
Vinita Dawra Nangia is an Associate Editor with The Times of India. The blog O-zone reflects her incisive insights into life, relationships and contemporary living, offering a fresh, sharper and more evolved look at yourself and the world you dwell in. The blog puts forth practical, feel-good ways of dealing with contemporary chaos and the myriad internal struggles we deal with each day. O-zone runs as a weekly column in The Times of India’s Sunday supplement, Times Life.

Vinita is also Festival Director of the Times Literature Festival and Director/Founder of Write India, the world’s largest crowd-sourced story contest.

Vinati BholaVinati Bhola

Vinati Bhola, author of Udaari and an internationally published poet based in Delhi. I work as a lawyer but fall back on poetry time and again to keep up with the monotony of everyday life. My first book, Udaari is a collection of poems published in November 2017. The word 'Udaari' has been taken from the Punjabi language which means to fly. Majority of the poems in the book revolve around the theme of self-love and how empowering it is to let ourselves grow even if it means breaking into shards and picking up the pieces to heal with more mettle

Vaishali MathurVaishali Mathur

Vaishali Mathur, previously responsible for Indian language publishing and rights at Penguin Random House India, has been appointed as editor-in-chief of Hind Pocket Books.

Penguin Random House was formed in 2013 from the merger of Random House and Penguin Group. The merger created the biggest book publisher in the world.

Kothapalli GeethaKothapalli Geetha

Smt. Kothapalli Geetha was born in 1971 into an educated and well settled family. She was the second child and only daughter to her parents, Late Shri. Kothapalli Jacob and Late Smt. Kothapalli Lizamma. Her father, who belongs to the Valmiki Community, recognized as Scheduled Tribe, hails from Thimmapuram village of Addathigala Mandal in East Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh. He was the first graduate from the Tribal belt of East Godavari District. He joined the Revenue services of Andhra Pradesh in 1948 and retired as a Deputy Collector in 1982 from Mahaboobnagar District, Telangana. He dedicated his retirement life to social service and worked relentlessly for the betterment of people in the rural and agency areas of East Godavari District. He was the guiding force behind Smt. Geetha’s pursuit of higher studies and eventually, her stupendous career. He passed away in 1997 but is still remembered fondly by his people for his selfless work. Smt. Geetha’s mother, Smt. Kothapalli Lizamma was a teacher and retired in 1984 as the Headmistress of Municipal High School in Rajamahendravaram. She was a flagbearer of women empowerment and provided steadfast support to her husband. She adopted the Churches and social causes encouraged by her husband and continued his work till her death at the ripe old age of 93.

Smt. Geetha did her Bachelor of Arts from Andhra University in 1989. Later, she got her Bachelor of Education degree from MR College of Education, Vizianagaram, where she was the University topper. She started her career in February, 1991, as an Officer in a Regional Rural Bank (Godavari Grameena Bank). She served the Bank as an officer for 2 years and as a Manager for 4 years and gained knowledge in banking and administrative fields. While employed, she pursued higher studies privately and did her Masters of Arts in three disciplines, viz. Psychology, Public Administration and Sociology, from Andhra University.

Satyaketu SankritSatyaketu SankritProfessor (Hindi), Ambedkar University Delhi

Designation - Professor (Hindi) Ambedkar University Delhi From 2010 onwards .

Worked As a Assistant Professor & Associate Professor (Hindi) in Govt colleges of Higher Education Madhya Pradesh From 18.10.1993 to 20.09.2010.

Specialization - Hindi Fiction, Hindi Cinema, Hindi Criticism And Diaspora Literature..


Minor Research Project of U.G.C on the topic of PREMCAND AUR JAINENDR KI KAHAMIYO KA TULMATMAK ADDHYAYANcompleted in 2009.

Achivements :-

Award given by Hindi Academy Delhi on getting the highest grade point in JNU M.A (HINDI) examination.

''Prawasi Sahitya Alochna Samman' Award Given By Katha UK London For Special Contribution In Diaspora Literature.

Publication :- Books - Hindi Upanyaas Mein Parisar Jeewan

                     Hindi Katha Sahitya : Ek Drishti

                     Alochna Ke Swar

                     Unnisvin Shatabdi ka Hiindi Sahitya

Atleast 100 book reviews articles & Research Papers have been published in various journals and magazines.

 Invited As a special Keynote Speaker In various National & International Seminars.

Invited As A keynote Speaker On Hindi Diaspora And Dalit Literature at Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK.

Sharmistha MukherjeeSharmistha MukherjeeIndian Kathak dancer, choreographer and politician

Sharmistha Mukherjee (born 30 October 1965) is an Indian Kathak dancer, choreographer and politician of the Indian National Congress.Born in West Bengal, Mukherjee grew up in Delhi. Her father is Pranab Mukherjee,who was the 13th President of the Republic of India.Mukherjee began formal dance training at age 12. Her teachers included Pandit Durgalal, Vidushi Uma Sharma and Rajendra Gangani. The Hindu called her performances "accomplished" and lauded her precise footwork.

Sharmistha joined the INC in July 2014. Since then she has been actively participating in rallies organized by the party and working at the grass root level with the party workers in her area. She contested the Delhi Assembly election in February 2015 from the Greater Kailash constituency but lost, coming third with 6,102 votes after Saurabh Bharadwaj and Rakesh Gullaiya.

Rashmi JoshiRashmi Joshi

Born in an army family, Rashmi pursued human resource for her higher education, along with labour law and labour welfare. Her professional training led her to work with an IT company for a few years, until she finally left for her love of music. Rashmi had also been training in music for many years. A couple of music albums, which were much appreciated, saw her as a full time artist thereafter.

An evolutionary disposition from the beginning had her writing quotable quotes about life from the tender age of 13. Her spiritual instincts only sharpened by the challenging years she faced as she journeyed along; which she now terms 'mentally stimulating'. She realized that everything was gently prodding her to finally reach her foreordained destination – of sharing the knowledge that she gained in her spiritual pursuits.

Rashmi Joshi



Ajit RaiAjit Rai
  1. Film Critic - Jansatta / The Indian Express
  2. Editor - Rang Prasang, an international journal of Cinema& Theatre,  National Should Of Drama, Ministry Of Culture, Govt. Of India.

3 .Founder Editor - Drishyantar, a monthly magazine of Cinema TV Culture & Media by Doordarshan Ministry of I&B Govt of India.

  1. World Record

(a) Ajit Rai made a world record in film journalism in Cannes Film Festival 2018.  He published 75 articles in various Indian Newspapers in 15 days on Cannes Film Festival This is a world record that one journalist wrote 75 articles about one event.

(b) He made a world record in Theatre Criticism in 2010 when his 25 articles published 25 days daily without break during International Theatre Festival by National School of Drama New Delhi.

  1. Writing a book on Hinduja Family and Indian Cinema.
  2. Pioneer in personality journalism in India in 1995 in India Today magazine.
  3. He has been invited to deliver lecture on Indian culture, Theatre Cinema & society by United Nation ( UNO) New York, British Parliament, London, President House Tehran Iran, Uppsala University Sweden, Bollywood Festival Oslo, Norway, Indian Film Festival Berlin Germany & Moscow Russia. Dubai UAE ( Indian Embassy), UNESCO, Paris France and many more.
  4. Ajit Rai is one and only who has been invited in  Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony Oslo Norway in 2014.
Shivam SinghShivam SinghData Analyst and Campaign Manager

Shivam Shankar Singh is a data analyst and campaign manager who has worked on several election campaigns across the country. He worked with IPAC in Punjab and managed BJP’s campaign in Manipur and Tripura for the assembly elections.

His team has built technological tools for data analytics that allow for the analysis of booth level voting data, creation of demographic profiles for constituencies, GIS mapping of datasets and introduced survey methodologies to increase the accuracy of on ground surveys conducted by the party.

Vineet BajpaiVineet BajpaiEntrepreneur

Vineet is one of the most celebrated young entrepreneurs and CEOs in India. Winner of several awards, including the 'Entrepreneur of the Year 2016', he has been listed among the 100 Most Influential People in India’s digital ecosystem. He is a bestselling author with three business books and three fiction novels to his credit.

Ashutosh SharmaAshutosh SharmaSecretary to the Government of India, Department of Science and Technology

Prof. Ashutosh Sharma is the Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India since January 09, 2015. He was a professor (1997-), an Institute Chair Professor (2007-) and the Head (2003-05) of Chemical Engineering, and the founding Coordinator of Nanosciences Center and Advanced Imaging Center at the Indian Institute of Technology at Kanpur. Ashutosh received his PhD from the State University of New York at Buffalo (SUNYAB; 1988) working with Prof. Eli Ruckenstein—a recipient of the US Medal of Science, his MS from the Pennsylvania State University (1984) and B.Tech. from IIT Kanpur (1982).

Ashutosh has served on the Governing Boards/Councils of over 15 prominent scientific institutions in India and has had a broad international experience as a research faculty at SUNY Buffalo School of Medicine (1988-90), visiting faculty at University of Texas at Austin, University of Western Ontario, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg and the World Class University Program of South Korea and as a Member of the European Research Commission.

Ashutosh is a recipient of numerous honors and awards including the inaugural Infosys Prize in Engineering and Computer Science, TWAS Science Prize of the World Academy of Sciences, Bessel Research Award of the Humboldt Foundation, J. C. Bose Fellowship, Bhatnagar Prize, Homi J. Bhabha Award of UGC, The Syed Husain Zaheer Medal of INSA,Distinguished Alumnus Awards of IIT Kanpur and SUNY Buffalo and the Life-time Achievement Award of the Indian Science Congress.

Ashutosh is an elected Fellow of The Indian National Science Academy, The Indian Academy of Sciences, The National Academy of Sciences, India and Indian National Academy of Engineering, The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) and the Asia-Pacific Academy of Materials. He has also served on the Councils of the first two. He is has been an associate editor of ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, Proceedings of Indian National Science Academy and ASME Journal of Micro- and Nano-Manufacturing and has been on the editorial boards of several journals: Carbon; ACS Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research; Current Science; Nanomaterials and Energy; Chemical Engineering Science; Journal of Colloid and Interface Science; Canadian Journal of Chemical Engineering and Indian Chemical Engineer.

Ashutosh’s other interests are in ancient history and philosophy, poetry and art.

Rahul SainiRahul SainiAn author

An author with a knack of tickling the funny bone, he is also a photographer with a wanderlust and loves to capture the world through his third eye. Having published five novels, most of which have been national bestsellers, his career has meandered from gaining a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture from one of the finest architecture colleges in India to Masters in English Literature. His books portray the free spirited India youth and talks about some serious issues presented in a fun and light way.

Purnima SharmaPurnima SharmaMedia professional

Purnima Sharma is a well known media professional with over 15 years of experience in the industry.

She has worked with various national news organisations including Zee Business and Doordarshan and Aaj Tak. For years, she has Anchored many prime time shows, live news bulletins and has been involved in the making of various Government policy related shows and programs. Other than national and international politics she also takes keen interest in issues related to Business and Finance. She has interviewed top people from the world of politics, art, entertainment and business tycoons too. With an eye for detail and extraordinary presentation skills she has displayed her ability to moderate and host shows with authority on the subject. She combines substantial content with her eloquent presentation to make the shows a success.

One of the top professional voices in the industry, Purnima expresses her opinion at various media platforms in the form of articles and editorials at many renowned media platforms These days she Anchors shows for a national TV channel apart from Anchoring & Moderating knowledge events.

Rakhee BaksheeRakhee BaksheeVeteran Media and Communications Professional

Ms. Rakhee Bakshee is a Veteran Media and Communications Professional with over a decade of experience in the Industry. She has also been active as a social entrepreneur. A Credible name in anchoring, hosting and moderating Ms, Bakshee has served as Former Media Adviser to the Former Lok Sabha Speaker and handled significant assignments in the Parliament.

Till recently, she has been hosting a popular English weekly show titled “The Quest” On Rajya Sabha TV. The show, featuring eminent political personalities and well known Public figures, got rave reviews from people all across the nation and the globe.

Having started her career as a print Journalist, Ms. Bakshee made her name as a columnist for Daily Newspaper “The Hindustan Times” Apart from this; she also contributed to popular dailies like “The Times of India”  “The Pioneer” “Financial Express” and other Magazines.

Her foray into Television Journalism began as a political Correspondent for “India this week”, a weekly show aired on Doordarshan and Produced by’ Moving Pictures Company based in New Delhi and headed by well-known Filmmaker Mr. Ramesh Sharma. Having moved to Zee News Channel, Ms Bakshee acted as a Bureau Chief of Jammu & Kashmir and went on to Cover kargil War. Apart from handling many important assignments, her next job in Doordarshan got her an opportunity to cover Iraq war. She hosted many important programmers like “Samachar Plus” “Charcha mein” “Late Edition” and live shows.

Ms. Rakhee Bakshee headed an All Women Media Syndicate Women’s Feature Service as the Director. Currently She is on the Board of OneWorld Foundation India. She is also the Director of OneWorld Women Network. She has been part of Kumaon Literature Festival, Dehradun Literature Festival, Khandala, Delhi Literature Festival and Aambrotsave Festival. She is also on the board of Confederation of Young Leaders (CYL) She has been an advisor and convener of socially relevant programmes and award ceremonies and is a recipient of many awards. Having been a Gender Rights Champion She has played an active role in many women oriented programmes she has also been a Jury Member of Laadli Media Awards 2017. She has been part of academic programmes in leading Universities and colleges. Ms. Rakhee Bakshee lives in New Delhi.

Madhulika LiddleMadhulika LiddleNovelist and Award-winning short story Writer

Madhulika Liddle is a novelist and award-winning short story writer. Best-known as the author of the Muzaffar Jang series, about a 17th century Mughal detective, she also writes short stories in different genres and across themes ranging from black humour to social awareness, crime to romance. Her most recent book, a collection of women-centric short stories named Woman to Woman: Stories was released in November 2017. Madhulika lives in Noida and blogs—mainly about classic cinema, food and travel—at www.madhulikaliddle.com.

Ramit SethiRamit Sethi

A seasoned business executive with over 25 years of leadership experience in Global Banking, Corporate Finance, M&A, Corporate Restructuring Advisory, Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) / Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) industries and Eco Energy. Chartered Accountant. StrongBox Ventures, Founder & CEO – Advisory Services since 2012. Promoting Early Stage companies. Investor / India Advisor in Tandem (US) Fund. Ventures include a (US) Healthcare Behavioral management company, (India) Recruitment software, (Singapore) Payments Company, (Singapore) 3D Printing, (US) Toy Company, (Turkey / India) Outsourcing advisory… Wipro - Senior Vice-President and Global Head - Financial Services (BFSI) BPO/KPO businesses. Built the business. Opened Poland / China. 2007 - 2012 Infosys BPO - Member, Executive Council. Built the KPO services.2005-2006. KPMG India – Partner, Corporate Finance & Head, Restructuring Services. Several M&A, valuations and advisory deals. Won “Emerging Market Deal of the Year in 2004”. Built Restructuring Services for India. 2000- 2005. 13 years with Standard Chartered Bank (SCB). India & Dubai. Head Special Assets (Distressed Debt), Member Credit Policy and Early Alert Committees, Corporate Banker

Jaya JaitlyJaya JaitlyProlific writer

Jaya Jaitly studied in Japan, Burma, Belgium, UK, and graduated from Smith College, USA in 1963.

She has an intimate knowledge of the craft traditions of the country having worked in the field for over 40 years. She is considered a leader and expert in this field.

In 1986, she founded an association of crafts people called the Dastkari Haat Samiti, which enables traditional workers to gain confidence in the marketplace through many innovative strategies.

She served as Design and Marketing Consultant to the Gujarat government for 11 years and the Uttar Pradesh Govt for 3 years.

She conceptualized and established Dilli Haat, a crafts marketplace in Delhi.

Her work in bringing together crafts people of India and Pakistan, Vietnam, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Iran, Eygpt, apart from South Asian and African countries has been taken up by the government as an instrument in diplomacy.

She is a prolific writer and has published books on the Crafts of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh, the Craft Traditions of India, Viswakarma's Children, a socio-economic study of crafts people, and Crafting Nature, The Artistry of Handwork, and Woven Textiles of Varanasi and a seminal work called Crafts Atlas of India. She created a vast documentation of the arts, crafts and textiles of India through 24 highly artistic and unique maps of all the states of India, She has written stories on crafts children that were first published by Penguin and now widely distributed in many regional languages Her recent publication Crafting Indian Scripts, is based on a major project called Akshara, combining literacy, craft and calligraphy. The exhibition created and curated by her on this subject has been shown in Delhi, Cairo, the UNESCO headquarters in Paris, Mumbai and Singapore.  A Podium on the Pavement is a selection of her writings on a variety of subjects including politics, foreign affairs, craft livelihoods, women and social issues. Her latest book is Life among the Scorpions – a memoir of a woman in Indian politics which was published recently.

She serves on Advisory bodies related to Crafts and Livelihoods, Social Science studies, and other public causes. She has been deeply involved in heritage and livelihood issues at all levels and has received awards for her work in culture and the arts and as a role model for women leaders.

Nupur Dhingra PaivaNupur Dhingra PaivaChartered Clinical Psychologist

Nupur D. Paiva is a Chartered Clinical Psychologist, Associate Fellow with the British Psychological Society and mother-of-two. She is the lead Child & Adolescent Psychotherapist for Family Tree, a Child and Adolescent Mental Health Team in New Delhi which she started in 2018. She also teaches on the Mphil Psychotherapy programme at Ambedkar University, Delhi. She is the author of Love & Rage: The Inner Worlds of Children and along with her husband, Co-Founder of The Art of Sport - a development programme for girls, using sports and group therapy.

For her own energy and emotional balance, she likes to dance but unfortunately has poor motor coordination and lacks grace.

She does not let that stop her.

Gaurav BhataraGaurav BhataraEducationist, Philanthropist and social entrepreneur

CEO and group Director AB Education,  Educationist, Philanthropist and social entrepreneur. After Doing univ education in US and Europe, he worked in international companies in Maritime and quasi legal top positions for over 2 decades. He has mentored over 4000 students to become lawyers in India and internationally. Last year he interacted with over 30,000 students through sessions and seminars. He founded AB Edutimes which reached a circulation of over 3 lacs students last year. He received the Delhi Icon award 2018 by Radio City for excellence in education and Law exam training.