KBF Class 9

Syed Junaid Altaf,Group Executive Director, FIL Industries Private Limited 

As Group Executive Director of FIL Group, Junaid manages the Group’s operational and financial strategy, and new business development. The Group has business interests in agro-genetics, agrochemicals, consumer and retail goods, logistic infrastructure, global trade and tourism infrastructure.Junaid has been instrumental in conceptualising and setting up the largest Indo-French mountain infrastructure development in India (Skyview by Empyrean Patnitop) in addition to collaborating with marquee global organisations like POMA SAS France, MND Group for the development of adventure tourism in India. He is also setting up largest tourism development project in Uttarakhand and the first dual use (tourism and urban mobility) aerial ropeway in India connecting Dehradun and Mussoorie. This ropeway will be amongst the 5 longest ropeways in the world.As an entrepreneur, Junaid has founded Sanctus Healthcare, which is an integrated social impact platform that offers the entire spectrum of services for patients who need long term care at home with a strong focus on geriatric care. In the early part of his career, Junaid has worked in New York, USA with CIBC World Markets Corp./Oppenheimer & Co. Inc., as M&A Analyst and as well as with UBS Financial Services.Junaid holds an MSc in Financial Management & Risk Engineering from Imperial College London and a BSc Business Administration with a major in Finance from Washington University in St Louis, USA. He is also an alumnus of St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University and The Doon School in India. Junaid is the Vice-Chairman of the Mobility Committee of the Indo-French Chamber of Commerce; Member – National Tourism Committee, FICCI; Member – Northern Region, Tourism & Hospitality Committee, CII; Member – Entrepreneurs Organization (EO), New Delhi Chapter; Member – Vistage Asia, Malaysia Chapter, Member of the Indian Public Schools Society (IPSS) and Member of the Executive Committee of the Doon School Old Boys Society (DSOBS). In his free time or away from work, Junaid spends time reading, mostly non fiction or books on business strategy, politics and international affairs, and anthropology. He is a fan of writers such as Peter Hopkirk, Simon Sinek, Siddhartha Mukherjee, Vikram Seth and Tara Westover to name a few.

Shrayana Bhattacharya,Senior Economist, Social Protection and Jobs Practice for South Asia, The World Bank

Shrayana Bhattacharya is currently a Senior Economist at the World Bank’s Social Protection and Jobs Practice for South Asia. In her role, she is responsible for providing design and policy reform guidance to various state governments and national government agencies on safety nets and public insurance programs in India. She leads a series of projects financed by the Bank to strengthen the outreach and delivery of state level social protection programs in Kerala, West Bengal and Odisha. Shrayana also led the Bank’s multi-billion-dollar development policy loan and dialogue to support India’s COVID-19 relief welfare measures, in partnership with the Ministry of Finance, Government of India. Her writings on social protection issues have appeared in the Indian Express, Hindustan Times and the Economic and Political Weekly. Prior to joining the Bank in 2014, she worked on issues related to informality and social security at the Centre for Policy Research, SEWA, ILO and the Institute of Social Studies Trust. She has a Masters in Public Administration and International Development from the Harvard Kennedy School and studied economics at Hindu College, Delhi University. Her first book of non-fiction Desperately Seeking Shah Rukh: India’s Lonely Young Women and the Search for Intimacy and Independence was published by HarperCollins India in November 2021. In her free time, she is trying to write her next book.

Shaili Chopra,Founder, SheThePeople.TV

Shaili Chopra is a gamechanger in India’s content landscape, having brought women’s issues to the forefront like none other and creating a path-breaking digital platform like SheThePeople.TV with a reach of 400 million. She has to her credit key global fellowships like the Draper Hills Fellowship from Stanford University and Vital Voices. Shaili is a recipient of India’s biggest journalism award, the Ram Nath Goenka Award for Journalism. She has authored five books. By creating a platform like SheThePeople, with real stories of real women, Shaili has been named among the top 50 women in media and marketing who are changing the democratic fabric of India by putting women’s voice on the policy tables. Shaili is currently building a new initiative that puts women’s health at the centre of making women the next powerhouse for the Indian economy.

Ruchi GuptaFounder and Director, Future of India Foundation

Ruchi Gupta is founder and director of the Future of India Foundation, a non-partisan foundation which works at the intersection of big-picture youth issues, politics and technology. She is former All India Jt Secretary of the Congress Party and national in-charge of the world’s largest progressive student union with more than 40 lakh registered members and a global diaspora base. Ruchi has 15 years of experience working in the Indian political and social sector space and has written extensively on policy and political issues in all the English language national newspapers and journals. Ruchi is co-editing the Youth Volume in Samruddha Bharat Foundation’s “Rethinking India” series being published by Penguin. Before coming back to India, she was a consultant with McKinsey & Co. in New York City.

Varun GuptaWhole Time Director, Ashiana Housing Limited

Varun is Whole Time Director and along with his two brothers runs Ashiana Housing Limited. Ashiana develops senior living communities and residential communities for India’s middle class. Varun strongly believes that best businesses are purpose led and rooted in core values. Ashiana, through its communities, enriches lives of its residents by providing them infrastructure and opportunities to lead more fulfilling, active and healthier lives. Building communities is a way of fulfilling Ashiana’s purpose of “nurturing smiles”.Ashiana has been rated Asia’s Best under a Billion by Forbes Magazine twice in a row and as North India’s No.1 real estate brand by Track2Realty Magazine. Varun spends most of his time developing long term strategies for the company and finding new projects to start, including identifying & acquiring land, associating with joint development partners and conceptualising the project. Initially, Varunled the finance function and was instrumental inraising institutional capital at Ashiana. He has played a key role in bringing the new concept of Kid Centric Homes to Ashianawith the aim to foster the “right mahaul” for progressive learning & development of children. Prior to Ashiana, Varun worked at the New York office of Citigroup.
Varun has a Bachelor’s degree from Stern School of Business at New York University. He majored in Finance and graduated ‘Magna Cum Laude’ and is a recipient of the Founder’s Award for academic excellence. He is an alumnus of Harvard Business School. Varun has two children, loves to play squash and read books.

Thavaseelan K (IAS)Deputy Commissioner, Mon, Nagaland

Thavaseelan K is an Officer of the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) belonging to the Batch of 2012 borne on the Nagaland Cadre. He did his Bachelors in Electrical & Electronics from College of Engineering, Guindy, Anna University, Chennai graduating 2nd in the University. He went on to do his Post Graduate Diploma in Management (PGDM), from the prestigious Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad. He then worked with Jaypee Capital as a Financial Derivatives Trader. He was also a part of the team that set up the United Stock Exchange (USE). He then worked with e-Bay Inc as a Strategist before joining the IAS. He topped his batch during the training at the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA) in addition to bagging the Esprit De Corps Award.  After joining the IAS, he has held several charges such as Assistant Commissioner Dimapur, Sub-Divisional Officer (C) Wokha, Additional Deputy Commisioner Wokha before joining as Deputy Commissioner Mon. He is a recipient of a National e-Governance Award and a Governor’s Gold Medal for outstanding service. He enjoys travelling and has visited 31 countries till date.

Annamalai KuppusamyState President, Bharatiya Janata Party, Tamil Nadu

K. Annamalai is the State President of Bharatiya Janata Party – Tamil Nadu, Chief Servant of We The Leaders Foundation and Co-founder of CoRE Talent and Leadership Development. He did his engineering from PSG College of Technology, Coimbatore and MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow. He gave his civil service examination and got selected as an officer in the Indian Police Service in Karnataka cadre. During his training in LBSNAA, he was awarded ‘Espirts-De-Corps’ Award and Sangay Lhaden Shenga award for his exceptional performance in the training. Annamalai started his career as an IPS Officer in the State of Karnataka and has served as the Superintendent of Police of Udupi and Chikkamagaluru Districts and as the Deputy Commissioner of Police of Bangalore South. He has documented his experience as a police officer in his book ‘Stepping Beyond Khaki’. Annamalai resigned from his IPS service to help groom leadership at grassroot level. This led him to the founding of We The Leaders Foundation, an NGO with a focus on three areas, organic farming, job-focused skill development and dialogue for development. He joined Bharatiya Janata Party in August, 2020 and was appointed as the State President of BJP-Tamil Nadu, making him the youngest State President in the party.

Saurav MalhotraCo-Founder & Designer, Rural Futures, Balipara Foundation

Saurav is Co-Founder and Designer of the Rural Futures innovation at the Balipara Foundation. Rural Futures integrates ecological gains with upward socio-economic mobility of forest-fringe communities across the Eastern Himalayan region. Through Rural Futures, Saurav and his team mobilise forest-fringe communities (esp. youth) to engage in the complete value-chain of ecosystem restoration. The natural capital that is sustainably derived from restored habitats is utilised by communities to deliver universal basic assets – locally & autonomously. Saurav holds a master’s from the University of Manchester and is passionate about the great outdoors.

Suraj MorajeFormer Managing Director, Quess Corp

Suraj formerManaging Director, Quess Corp, an integrated process outsourcing company and India’s largest employer in the private sector. Suraj spent two decades working at McKinsey & Company where he played an instrumental role in establishing the Firm’s African Tech Media and Telecom practice, and transforming the Philippines Office as the Managing Partner for the country. He is an Electrical Engineering graduate from the National Institute of Technology in Surat and a PGDM holder from the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad which awarded him the IIM Ahmedabad Young Achiever Award in 2020. He lives in Bangalore with his wife and two sons, and is a passionate photographer, gardener, and vinyl collector in his spare time.

Manasi PrasadIndian classical musician and Museum Director, Indian Music Experience Museum

Manasi Prasad is a noted Indian classical vocalist from Bangalore and the Museum Director of the Indian Music Experience Museum (IME).Manasi has performed widely across India, and in 6 continents around the world. She is a recipient of the prestigious Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar from the Sangeet Natak Akademi, Govt. of India, the Rotary-Brigade Young Achievers Award and the Shanmukhananda Yuva Kalakar Puraskar. Manasi has been involved in reviving the compositions of violin maestro, Mysore T. Chowdiah, and in 2020, she spearheaded the creation of www.chowdiah.com, an online digital archive. She has brought perspectives from the arts to the corporate world through talks at fora such as the CII India Innovation Summit, the FICCI Smart Cities conclave, and workshops on creativity for organizations such as Infosys and IIIT-B.

After a brief stint as a banker, Manasi spearheaded the setup of the Indian Music Experience Museum, which is India’s first interactive music museum. Supported by the Brigade Group as part of its CSR initiatives, the vision of the IME is to preserve and propagate Indian music. As Museum Director, Manasi led the set-up of the museum from concept to curation and execution, and continues to lead the museum’s work in exhibition, education, public programs and community outreach. The IME, which opened in 2019, is part of the GRAMMY Museum Affiliate network, and has a range of partnerships with organizations such as the British Council, Manchester Museum and Google Art and Culture.Manasi is an engineering graduate, and went on to do her MBA from IIM Bangalore, where she won the Aditya Birla Scholarship. She is a Melton Fellow, a TED Fellow, and has been recognized as one of the 35 ‘Indians of Tomorrow’ by the India Today publications. Her story has been the subject of a case study, which forms part of the ‘Managing Career Success and Transitions’ course at her alma mater, IIMB.Manasi is mother to two feisty kids. She has run a few half marathons, and enjoys her practice of yoga.

Deepthi RavulaChief Executive Officer, WE HUB, Government of Telangana

Deepthi Ravula is the CEO for WEHUB, India’s 1st and only state led initiative to promote foster Women Entrepreneurship. She was born and brought up in Hyderabad, Telangana. She has done her engineering from Hyderabad and has attended graduate school at CSU, San Diego. She has 14 years of experience working California, USA in area of Communications. She was the Joint Director for Electronics (Business and Semiconductor) for the State of Telangana from 2016-18. Prior to joining the Department of Electronics, Deepthi had worked in Nokia, San Diego designing Audio Acoustic Circuits. She did protocol design at Palm Inc. in Sunnyvale, Atheros in Santa Clara, Qualcomm and Litepoint (Teradyne) in Sunnyvale. In her roles, she has worked on Audio Acoustic Design, Cellular Technologies all the way from GSM to VoLTE, Connectivity technologies such as BT, WIFI, NFC, ZigBee. She worked as an RF application engineer AE, handling all Pre-and Post-sales support, Technical Marketing, Business Development. She was involved in training customers ranging from PRC(China), India, Europe, South America to USA. She has travelled to various parts of the world in across her roles in Corporate America. She is an avid gamer, an ardent advocate for women in STEM, Women In Leadership, Financial & Digital inclusion for all so No one is left behind.

Dhyanesh ShahCo-founder, Mosaic Wellness

Dhyanesh’s career spans 17 years across entrepreneurship, VC/PE investing, management consulting and software development. He started his career in computer science as an engineer at Oracle Financial services, building internet banking platforms. He then moved on to business consulting at McKinsey, where he spent over half a decade working with several clients across financial services, consumer and healthcare sectors in India and South East Asia. Dhyanesh spent the next 6 years as an investment professional at Fidelity (Eight Roads Ventures) leading VC/PE investments in the healthcare, consumer and financial services sectors. He stepped into entrepreneurship two years ago when he co-founded Mosaic Wellness, where he is building digitally native full-stack health clinics to provide convenient access to holistic healthcare. On a personal front, Dhyanesh lives in Mumbai with his parents, wife and 5 year old son. He is fond of animals and pets, and loves challenging himself with endurance sports. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in engineering from the University of Mumbai, and an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.

Manvendra ShekavatManaging Director, The MRS Group

Manvendra’s love lies in hotels, heritage conservation, storytelling, design, ecological restoration, and social entrepreneurship. His work is a representation of a unique way of life that carefully preserves traditions of the past yet frames them in a modern idiom. His love for redesigning outdated systems to build a living environment that considers the needs of the local ecology, the individual, the community, and the sustainability and efficiency of its systems is personified in Dhun, a 500 acre neighbourhood in suburban Jaipur where he has planted over 2,70,000 trees. His hotels, ‘Suryagarh’and ‘Narendra Bhawan’, take the path less travelled and his NGO ‘I Love Jaisalmer’, was responsible for launching Jaisalmer’s largest cleanliness and conservation drive.
Manvendra believes in India and it’s endless possibilities. Through his work, he aspires to marry heritage, human potential, diversity, and technology to create regenerative ecosystems. His curiosity for cultures and perspectives inspire his work and travels. Manvendra is currently working on building experiential hotels, restoring historic forts and palaces and developing a biome for sustainable living.

Pallavi ShrivastavaCo – Founder and Director, PROGCAP

Pallavi is the Co-Founder of Progcap, an award winning, inclusive financial technology firm that is working to empower the underserved micro-merchants in India with financing and digitization solutions.Working at the intersection of software and financial services, Progcap aims to be the first full stack retailer focused digital bank that digitizes, automates and eases capital movement across the supply chain to SMBs that have remained excluded from the formal financial ecosystem. Prior to setting up Progcap, Pallavi had worked with the International Finance Corporation, World Bank Group where she led IFC’ south Asia inclusive business investments program. She has an overall exposure of 15 years working in the areas of SME financing, investing, and consulting across India, South Asia and Africa. She has been awarded as 50 most Impactful Global Social Innovators and is the recipient of Iconic Women Leadership Award from Women Economic Forum. Pallavi is an engineering graduate and holds an MBA from XLRI, Jamshedpur.

 Manharsinh YadavDirector, Prime Minister’s Office, Government of India

Manharsinh Yadav is a Director in Prime Minister’s Office since January 2018 and covers issues related to Foreign Policy, Defence and other national security matters.  He has contributed in formulating and implementation of various policies related to Science and Technology including Nuclear, Space, Telecommunication and Information Technology.  He has expertise in international relations and security issues. He is a Bachelor of Engineering (Computer Engineering) from, Gujarat University.  As an officer of Indian Foreign Service, he began his career in 2007 in Ministry of External Affairs. He, thereafter was posted to Permanent Mission of India, Geneva. He was a member of UN Secretary General’s Experts Group for Improvements in Internet Governance in 2009 and also was a part of delegation to International Tele-Communication Union Plenipotentiary Summit, Guadalajara, Mexico in 2010.  During 2011-14, he was Second Secretary in Indian Embassy, Brussels and was part of a delegation to Internet Governance Forum, Baku, Azerbaijan.  He was Deputy Secretary in National Security Council Secretariat, New Delhi during 2014-16.  He was First Secretary and Special Assistant to the Ambassador of India in Washington DC during 2016-18.  His areas of interest are international relation, public policy related to technology and military affairs.

Vishal TalrejaCo-founder, Dream a Dream

Vishal co-founded Dream a Dream (www.dreamadream.org) along with 11 others. Dream a Dream a Dream is a registered, charitable trust empowering children and young people from vulnerable backgrounds to overcome adversity and flourish in the 21st century using a creative life skills approach. Currently, we work with 10,000 young people a year through two innovation labs – After School Life Skills Programme and Career Connect Programme; have trained over 35,000 teachers/educators impacting over 875,000 children and young people and impact over 3+ Million children through various state government partnerships in Delhi, Jharkhand, Uttarakhand, Telangana and Karnataka.

Over the years, Dream a Dream has received recognition for its innovative model and work. Dream a Dream is a GuideStar Platinum certified NGO, 2-time recognised as 1 of 100 Global Innovations in K-12 Education by HundrED, 3-time winner of the Outstanding Annual Report Award, 3-time regional finalist of the India NGO of the Year Award, Runner-up at the GDN Most Innovative Project Award and has been recognized by Lego Foundation and Ashoka as a Champion (out of 630 global organizations) in the space of Re-Imagining Learning in the world. These videos talk about our work – https://vimeo.com/124809296 and https://vimeo.com/124817309.

Vishal has co-authored 4-papers along with Dr. David Pearson and Dr. Fiona Kennedy related to Life Skills in the Indian context. Vishal is an Ashoka Fellow (www.ashoka.org), an Eisenhower Fellow (https://www.efworld.org/) and a Salzburg Global Fellow (https://www.salzburgglobal.org/). He is a Board Member at PYE Global (www.pyeglobal.org) and Goonj (https://goonj.org/). He has previously been the Founder Director of Unltd India and Board Member of India Cares Foundation. He is the Cofounder of Karanga – The Global Alliance on Life Skills and SEL (https://karanga.org/) and Cofounder of The Weaving Lab (https://weavinglab.org/). Vishal has been recognized as an “Architect of the Future” by the Waldzell Institute in Austria and as ‘Innovator of the Year’ in 2019 by Hundred. He is also an advisor and mentor to Reap Benefit and is deeply committed to mentoring start-up NGOs and young social entrepreneurs. He is a TEDx Speaker, active writer on development challenges and human-interest stories and a poet. In 2018, he was awarded the ‘Heroes of Bengaluru’ award. Vishal has completed his graduation in Commerce and Accounting from Bangalore University and previously worked with Xerox India and a startup investment bank called Technology Holdings India Pvt. Ltd. He was an active member of AIESEC, an international student-led organization with presence in over 80 countries, during his college days. Vishal believes that if we can re-imagine learning to develop empathy, creative thinking, problem solving and collaborative working skills amongst young people, they will be able to overcome adversity and flourish in this fast-changing world.

Vikram VaidynathanManaging Director, Matrix Partners

Vikram is a Managing Director at Matrix Partners India, an early-stage investment firm with more than $1 billion under management. Matrix India has invested in several market leading companies including Ola, Ola Electric, DealShare. Vikram has personally led multiple investments and is a board member of market leading companies as Razorpay, Five Star Finance, OfBusiness, Dailyhunt, Mswipe and Jupiter. Vikram has been awarded 40 under Forty by Economic Times and nominated for the Economic Times Midas list award in 2021. At Matrix for the last 10+ years, he leads the Bangalore office at Matrix India and invests in early start-ups usually before they have a product in market or any meaningful revenue scale. Currently he is exploring ideas in Fintech (including Crypto), Global software and B2B, and guides Matrix’s teams in these areas. He is an MBA from IIM Bangalore and an engineer trained at RVCE Bangalore. Vikram started out as an engineer in technology companies working in India and Israel. Post MBA, Vikram was a management consultant at McKinsey. Vikram is on the board of advisors for Centre for wildlife studies, India’s leading non- profit in the wildlife conservation space. He is also part of the founding donors of ACT Grants. Vikram’s wife Priya leads revenue at a high growth start-up PhonePe, and they have 2 sons aged 9 and 6. An avid cyclist, and a fervent basketball fan, he can be found pursuing one of these passions along with his boys on the weekends.

Selection Criteria

The Programme

The Impact

Fellows in Action