Shri. Pradeep Kar is the Founder, Chairman & Managing Director of Microland, India’s specialist IT Infrastructure Management & Cloud Services Provider. He is on the board of UBM Limited, a global live media and B2B communications, marketing service and data provider listed on the London Stock Exchange; on the South Asia Board of Trinity College, Dublin and on the Strategic Advisory Board of Leaders’ Quest, an international social enterprise based in London. Pradeep is the immediate past President of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE), Bangalore chapter and is the founding member of the Bangalore chapter of the Young Presidents Organization.
Padmashri Anita Reddy a dedicated activist for the past 35 years has worked for the upliftment of slums of Bangalore. She began her journey of activism by facing stiff opposition from an exploitative and hostile system that alienated the poor from any form of justice or equity. After decades of having initiated and implemented development projects and programmes for families of these urban poor communities, she also reached out to villages of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu and is now involved in organizing and empowering the rural poor. She is one of the founding trustees of AVAS (Association for Voluntary Action and Service), as also of DRIK (Dwarknath Reddy Institutes for Knowledge) and DWARAKA (Development of Women And Rural Artisans for Knowledge and Action) Foundations, both initiatives of Ramanarpanam Trust (DRRT).
Shri. C N Kumaris a graduate from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences with a Master’s Degree in Personnel Management and Industrial Relations, he currently heads Advantage Offshore Knowledge Services. Advantage is a consulting company that he started in 1995 that provides end-to-end services for established MNCs starting operations in Bangalore. It has established over 200 companies in Bangalore including GE, Intel, Sun Microsystems and Philips.
Founder and convener of BFIT, an industry forum for Chief Executives of Large IT Companies, he has served on the National Board of National Institute of Personnel Management. Currently he provides corporate training and coaching to Top executives of large companies.
A veteran RTI activist, he has filed over 1000 RTI applications in public interest and has conducted RTI workshops and personal consultations for the public. Some of his achievements include getting transparency in the selection process of IIM’s and IIT’s and ensuring reservation for handicapped applicants in the National Law School, Bangalore admissions.
In the past, he has worked with companies like Texas Instruments, Digital Equipment India Limited and Imperial Chemical Industries. He has also been a visiting faculty at IIM Bangalore and a faculty resource at ISB Hyderabad.
Smt. Subhashini Vasanth an eminent Bharatnatyam dancer is known for her intense abhinaya, immaculate footwork and authentic adherence to the Pandanallur style. She has performed to awestruck audiences both in India and abroad. She has been acknowledged by critics and connoisseurs alike.
She is the founder director of Vasantharatna Foundation for Arts, started in the memory of her husband, Col. Vasanth V, Ashok Chakra. Her experiences in the Army have prompted her to start the Foundation as a bridge between families like herself and the larger world. The foundation provides Education Scholarships, conducts empowerment programs for women and children, and as a goodwill gesture celebrates with “Gift a Birthday”.
Subhashini and Veena Prasad have co-authored the biography of Col.Vasanth V Ashoka Chakra. The book ‘Forever Forty’ is a celebration of life and love.
She now divides her time performing, teaching and reaching out to the larger world in aid of martyrs’ families.
Shri. Rajendra Misra, an undergraduate from IIT Kanpur with Masters Degree from Tokyo University & Alumnus of Harvard Kennedy School of Government, has devoted his full time and resources to the issues of public policy & governance. He has been engaged with various state governments & central ministries in advisory roles on issues of public policy & governance. Currently, as a Member of Agenda for Bengaluru Infrastructure and Development (ABIDe) Task Force, he plays a significant role in Urban Infrastructure Initiative of Government of Karnataka in Bangalore. He also chairs Mahadevapura Agenda Task Force, a local area development initiative which has been very effective in making Whitefield & IT Corridor a citizen friendly & self contained suburb of Bangalore.Campaign
Dr. Ashwin MaheshAshwin Mahesh is a social technologist and public policy researcher who studies the way cities are growing in India. He studied to be an astronomer and an Antarctic climate scientist, and worked for a few years at NASA's Goddard Earth Science and Technology Centre.
In the past, he has worked at IIM-Bangalore, IISc, and IIIT-Bangalore. Recently, he established the Centre for Public Problem Solving, an applied research organization to tackle public problems.
Dr Mahesh co-founded and leads the social technology lab, Mapunity, which works to apply technology to tackle developmental challenges. In 2006, Mapunity built the first Transport Information System for a major city in India. He is also a co-founder of Lithium, India's first electric mobility solution for corporate transport.
A writer for TOI and many other papers, Dr Mahesh is also the editor of India Together, which he co-founded in 1998. He conceptualized and helped implement Bangalore's popular Big10 bus service, and has also helped steer many of the digital initiatives of the Bangalore Traffic Police. He also pioneered the community-managed restoration of lakes in the city, and is part of a team working to develop a new regime for solid waste management.
He was a member of the Agenda for Bangalore Infrastructure and Development Task Force between 2009 and 2013, and also served as the Urban Research Strategist for the Government of Karnataka. In these capacities, he co-authored the urban development policy of the State.
Dr Mahesh has been the National Vice-President of Loksatta Party since January 2015. He is also a founder-member of the Bangalore Political Action Committee, which encourages businesses in the city to take active part in development initiatives and governance reforms.
Dr Mahesh is an Ashoka Fellow for social entrepreneurship. He also won the Ma Foi award for journalism, and the Volvo award for sustainable mobility. In 2012, Wired UK magazine listed him among the 50 people whose ideas will change the world.
Shri. Siddalingaiah a passionate poet has over 80 books to his credit. Widely acclaimed as not only a poet but also a critic, Prof Siddalingaiah was also the ex- officiate member of the Senate Syndicate and Academic council and retired as the Director of Collegiate education. He served as the Elected President of the biggest literary body in the country, the Kannada Sahitya Parishat from 1989-1992. He was also the invited director of Basavadi Sharana Sahitya Kendra, Gulbarga University. He has received many awards for his literary contribution that include the recent Masti Prashasti, state honour by the Kananda Sahitya Academy and the Rajyotsava Award by the Government of Karnataka in 2000 to name a few. He presently serves as a Member of the Encyclopedia, Kannada Section and Member of Literature and History of the Central Sahitya Academy.
Shri. Sajan Poovayya,Founder of Poovayya & Co., is a Senior Advocate in the Supreme Court of India and the High Courts of Delhi, Karnataka, Madras and Bombay. Having one of the leading law firms in the Asia Pacific region, he regularly represents large domestic and trans-national corporations in the Supreme Court of India and various High Courts in the country.
He graduated as a gold medalist with a Bachelor’s degree in Arts and an Honour’s degree in Law from the National Law School of India University (NLSIU) and with a Master’s Degree in Law from London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) where he was a Chevening Scholar.
He is a Fellow of the Society of Advanced Legal Studies, London and is admitted to practice as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of England & Wales.
One of the youngest ever to be appointed Additional Advocate General for the State of Karnataka, he was later designated Senior Advocate (akin to Queen’s Counsel) by the Full Court of the Karnataka High Court.
He chaired the Karnataka State Council of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), and officiated as the Vice President of the Society of Indian Law Firms (SILF). He has also been the Honorary Secretary of the India Section of the International Commission of Jurists and the India Co-Chair of the New York State Bar Association.
Dr. Vishal Rao has vast experience in the field of Oncology and Head & Neck Surgery and has attained training from Tata Memorial Hospital at Mumbai.A recognized Ted speaker, Dr. Rao has invented the AUM voice prosthesis to help throat cancer patients get their lost voice back, at an affordable price. He believes in prevention to palliation approach to oncology and works with several groups on holistic healing. He is also a consultant at the Institute of Public Health and a Director of the Cancer Prevention and Tobacco Control Project with W.H.O Tobacco Free Initiatives partners.
Shri. Murray Culshaw believes that the social (NGO) sector plays a vital role in building a caring and more just society. He has been an international development consultant, but now concentrates on encouraging social organisations in India to communicate their work to the Indian public; raise resources from Individuals and Companies and become more accountable to society.
Murray is on the board of a number of social organizations, and is the co-Founder/ Chairperson of ‘Bangalore Cares’. Bangalore Cares has recently changed its name to ‘India Cares’ in order to build a national programme of support and encouragement to social organisations.
Shri. P G Bhat, His trust treats terminally ill cancer patients and counsels their families. In operation since 1994, the trust has over the years brought palliative care to over 18,000 such patients. All this care is rendered entirely free of charge. Indian Cancer Society spreads awareness about the disease, does early detection and screening camps and renders emotional support to cancer patients and their care givers all over Karnataka. Mr. Rao has undertaken all these activities after long corporate career.
Dr. Sudarshan Ballal,is the Medical Director & Chairman - Medical Advisory Board, Director, Manipal Institute of Nephrology & Urology. A recipient of many Gold Medals in MBBS and M.D., Dr. Ballal later had his further training in the USA and had the distinction of being one of the few to be triple Board certified in Internal Medicine, Nephrology & Critical Care. He has the rare distinction of being appointed as Professor of Medicine with St. Louis University School of Medicine (USA) and is also Adjunct Professor of Medicine at Manipal University. He was conferred the fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians, London for his contribution in Medicine. He has been with Manipal Hospital, Bangalore ever since its inception. He is also a member of the Board of Manipal Health Enterprises Pvt. Ltd and has now taken over as The Chairman of the Board of Manipal Hospitals . He set up the first postgraduate training Centre in Nephrology in Karnataka and performed the first cadaver kidney transplantation in Karnataka. His awards include Rajyothsava Award by the Government of Karnataka in 2005; Namma Bengaluru Award 2009, Doctors’ award in memory of Dr. B. C. Roy by the government of Karnataka in 2010, Trinity Vaidya Rathna Award 2010 by Trinity Health and Educational Trust, recognized for Sagar Awards 2010 and Aryabhata International Award in 2011 for his excellent service and contribution in the field of medicine. He has also been nominated as a Member of the Senate of Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences and is a member of the senate of Manipal University, Karnataka. He has numerous publications, national and international journals.
Shri. Prakash Belawadi is a journalist and actor, writer and director for the stage, television and film.
He is the co-founder of Centre for Film and Drama, now under Suchitra Cinema and Cultural Academy, which runs Suchitra School of Cinema and Dramatic Arts to conduct courses in filmmaking and acting; and organizes screenings, shows and seminars on aspects of media and issues of current interest.
His debut feature 'STUMBLE' won the National Award for Best Feature in the English language (2003). He has been a speaker and delegate at conferences in India and abroad, including Harvard Univ., San Francisco State Univ., and in London, Seoul, Gothenburg and Berlin. He has been faculty for film courses in Sweden and Istanbul, Turkey. He has won other awards for his work on the stage and screen and received the Karnataka Nataka Academy award (2012) for his contribution to English and Kannada language theatre.
Shri. N.S Mukunda is the Founder President of Citizens Action Forum (CAF), a federation of Resident Welfare Associations. Having keen interest in civic issues, he believes in offering solutions, not just pointing out the problem. Through CAF he has presented alternate budgets to the BBMP, convened public meetings on critical issues concerning the city and campaigned for a participatory approach to development and civic management. He has also extensively worked on the water issues in the city and is pursuing a comprehensive solution of the drinking water problem of Bangalore City. He has successfully fought through PILs against SAKRAMA, CDP 2015 and the Koramanagala Flyover project. He was the Chairman of the Central Campaign Committee for the Lok Satta Party and is at present a member of the Working Committee of the Party. He is also the Managing Director of Sneha Townships Pvt Ltd. and has over 40 years of experience in construction and electrical field. He is also a Member of the Govern Right, Govern Responsibly Platform of the Namma Bengaluru Foundation.
Shri. Amandeep Sandhu is a Bengaluru-based author who writes on psychological and political realities. His first novel Sepia Leaves (2008) is considered a cult classic in India. His second book Roll of Honour (2012, Rupa Publications) was shortlisted for the 2013 Hindu Prize. Amandeep Sandhu is a fellow at Akademie Schloss Solitude, Stuttgart. He is currently working on his non-fiction on Punjab and his third novel.
Shri. T N Seetharam is a prominent Indian Kannada film and TV serial director, actor and screenwriter. He is a cultural icon in Karnataka, through his work in several art mediums. Seetharam has written, directed, and produced plays, movies, and top-rated television series which have attracted millions of viewers.
Shri. Pradeep Kar is the Founder, Chairman & Managing Director of Microland, India’s specialist IT Infrastructure Management & Cloud Services Provider.
He is a Non-Executive Director of UBM plc., a global events-led marketing and communications services business listed on the London Stock Exchange; on the Board of Telstra Telecommunications India and on the South Asia Board of Trinity College, Dublin. Pradeep is the Chairman of the Governing Council of Srishti Institute of Art, Design & Technology and the Past President of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE), Bangalore Chapter and the Founding Member of the Bangalore Chapter of the Young Presidents Organization.
Smt. Vasanthi Hariprakash is a journalist who reported news on national television NDTV 24x7; anchored documentary episodes for BBC World News from Nepal & Laos; hosted a primetime show Good Morning Bangalore on Radio City 91.1 FM besides working on late city editions at the New Indian Express. Now an independent anchor and media educator, Vasanthi has moved on to an even more diverse universe. From being a storyteller of mythology tales in a musical to advising NGOs in Penang Malaysia on media matters to mentoring adolescents as part of a US consulate programme, Vasanthi now helps young journalists of the country’s largest rural newspaper, Gaon Connection. In between travel music and work, she makes sure though that she gets a reality check and lessons of life from her wise teen Anirudh.
Shri. T R Raghunandan is Advisor to the Accountability Initiative and a public finance expert.
A former Joint Secretary Government of India, Ministry of Panchayati Raj (Rural local governments),(2004-2009), Secretary Rural Development and Panchayat Raj, Karnataka State (2001-2004), he works in several States directly with Panchayats, their advocacy associations and a wide range of NGOs in the governance space. He has been an Advisor to the UNDP- India office on its democratic governance programme and with the Swiss Development Corporation for its local governance programme in South Asia. Till recently, he was a member of the State Planning Board of Karnataka and Principal Consultant to the Expert Committee constituted by the Government of India, on Centrally Sponsored Schemes. Mr. Raghunandan is also an anti-corruption expert and was the programme coordinator for the ipaidabribe.com initiative (2010-2011), which crowd-sources reports on corruption from citizens.
Raghunandan is a model maker, steam railway enthusiast and classic automobile restorer. He is setting up a rural museum for children, named the Museum of Movement, to celebrate the romance of transportation in India through a not for profit, Avantika Foundation, which he has co-founded.
Shri. H S Balram, is a veteran journalist with four decades of experience in various capacities. He retired from the Times of India after a 15-year glorious stint as the Resident Editor of its Bangalore edition. During his editorship the paper beat its rivals and grew into a strong No.1 English daily in Bangalore and Karnataka. His Sunday column `To the Point’ was highly popular. Before TOI, he worked for 20 years for the Indian Express – both in Delhi and Bangalore where he rose from being a copy editor and reporter to the rank of Resident Editor. He currently holds the post of Director, Asianet News Network and hosts a weekly citizen informative talk show on Radio Indigo called the Namma Bengaluru This Week where he brings to forefront issues that affect the city and its citizens.
Shri. Ravichandar is the Chairman of Feedback Consulting, a leading research and consulting firm in India. Ravichandar has been active on urban issues in India on a pro bono basis since 2000. He was a key member of the Bangalore Agenda Task Force (BATF) during 2000-04. He along with three others was involved in evangelizing the setting up of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JN-NURM) fund. He has catalyzed City Connect, a platform in 5 cities for industries to work with government on civic issues. Bangalore’s Tender SURE road project was a outcome of this initiative. He was one of the 3 members of the expert committee on BBMP Restructuring. He has also assisted with multiple social and cultural initiatives through the Bangalore International Centre, Vidya Poshak, Samhita Academy, Bangalore Literature Festival, Takshashila Institution, etc.
Shri. Jishnu Dasgupta is in equal parts a musician and marketing consultant. With acclaimed Benglauru folk-rock band Swarathma. He plays bass guitar and sings, while handling the band's PR, social media and partnerships. He is also a Director at Windowseat Communications, providing left-of-middle integrated marketing communications solutions for clients. An alumnus of XLRI, Jamshedpur, Jishnu was a brand manager at ITC Limited before the music bug bit him and he decided to take up music full time. You're likely to find him at his happiest either when playing on stage, or when playing train-train with his two boys.
Shri. Syed MH Kirmani is a household name in the field of cricket internationally. He has played 88 test matches, scoring nearly 3000 runs with two centuries to his credit, and having 198 victims behind wickets. Labeled as “CRISIS MAN”, Kirmani has broken all the existing national records for a wicket keeper batsman. In 1976, he equaled the world record of 6 victims in an innings in his very 2nd Test match against New Zealand thus becoming 4th in the world. From 1976 to 1986 he was considered WORLD’S NO. 1 WICKET KEEPER along with Alan Knott of England and Rodney Marsh of Australia. In 1983 World Cup at England, Kirmani was awarded the Best Wicket keeper in the World during the historic Indian victory at the hands of Godfrey Evans. The same year he was conferred upon, with 2 National Awards of ‘PADMA SHREE’ AND ‘ARJUNA AWARD’ and with the RAJYOTSAVA STATE AWARD. Most Recently in 2002 Kirmani was conferred with All Time Great Indian Wicket Keeper Batsman. He is also involved in various social activities in the city. He presently is the Chairman Selection Committee [KSCA] and the Director [Karnataka Cricket Academy]
Smt. Tara Anooradhais an Indian film actress who made her acting debut in 2003 and predominantly acts in Kannada films. She has shared screen space in several Kannada films alongside lead actors and, following successive commercial successes, established herself as one of the most sought-after actresses in the Kannada film industry. She has to her credit a great experience of having worked in over 500 films so far. She was the Chairperson of Karnataka Chalachitra Academy, a Cabinet level rank post, for the year 2012-13. During her tenure as the Chairperson of the Academy, she very successfully conducted the 5th Bangalore International Film Festival (BIFFES). In recognition of her contributions to Cinema and Social Work, she has been honored with the Prestigious NTR Award. She is also the Member of the Karnataka Legislative Council since 2012.
Shri. HS Venkatesha Murthy is a poet, novelist and writer in Kannada Language, is born and brought up in Hodigere village of Davanagere District and studied in Holalkere, Chitradurga and Bangalore. He worked as lecturer and professor for more than three decades in St. Joseph's College of Commerce, Bangalore and settled in Bangalore after retirement. He got his Doctorate in literature for his research on Kannadadalli Kathana Kavanagalu. HS Venkatesha Murthy is recognized as post-navya writer who is also well known as Bhavageete poet. He is also considered as a blend of two well-known literary themes in Kannada - pre-navya and post-navya. As of 2010, he has published 16 collections of poems in Kannada.