Speakers


A. Mangai

Dr. V. Padma, more popularly known as A. Mangai, has been actively engaged in Tamil theatre as an actor, Director and Playwright for almost three decades. Her fields of interest are theatre, gender and translation studies.
She has been a recipient of Fulbright Fellowship twice, both times for working on theatre and gender. She has directed over fifteen plays so far. All of them deal with women-centred themes and characters. She has directed five plays of Inquilab based on classical Tamil texts which include Avvai, Manimekalai and Kurinji Pattu. Some of her major translations are Ngugi Wa Thiongo’s Decolonising the Mind as Adaiyala Meetpu and Oxford’s very short introduction to Post colonialism by Robert Young. Her monograph on Gender and Theatre in India will be published early next year by Leftword.
Her passion is to concentrate on community theatre- to make theatre the voice of the voiceless, or the marginalized. Her work with transgender community over the past few years has helped form Kannadi Kalai Kuzhu. She has also directed two plays for them.


Abdul Bismillah

Abdul Bismillah is currently a professor in the Hindi department of the central university of Jamia Millia Islamia, Delhi. He has been the visiting professor at Warsaw University, Poland (1993-95) and at Jawaharlal Nehru Cultural Centre, Embassy of India, Moscow (2003-05).
He travelled to the U.S.S.R. in 1988, and was part of the Afro-Asiaticc Writers’ Conference in Tunisia in the same year. He attended the ‘International Book Week’ at Munich, Germany in 2002, and the World Hindi Conference at Johannesburg in 2012.
He has been felicitated with the ‘Soviet Land Nehru Award’, Dilli Hindi Akademi, Uttar Pradesh Hindi Sansthan, and Dev Puraskar by Madhya Pradesh Shaitya Parishad.


Alok Rai

For many years, writer and academic Alok Rai taught at Delhi University, the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi and the University of Allahabad. As a Rhodes Scholar, he received his B.Phil. in Modern English Studies from the University of Oxford, and went on to do his Ph.D. on the writings of George Orwell from University College London.
His areas of interest include Modern English Literature, and cultural processes in modern North India, with particular reference to issues of language and literature. He was awarded the Senior Fellowship of the ICSSR in 1985, and was a Fellow at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library during 1985-87. Publications include Orwell and the Politics of Despair, Hindi Nationalism, and an English translation of Premchand’s Nirmala.


Altaf Tyrewala

Altaf Tyrewala is the author of No God In Sight, Ministry of Hurt Sentiments and Engglishhh, and the editor of Mumbai Noir, a crime fiction anthology. His works have been published around the world and translated into numerous foreign languages. He lives in Mumbai and works in the e-learning industry.


Ambai

Ambai, alias Dr. C S Lakshmi is a historian and a creative writer who writes about love, relationships, quests and journeys in the Tamil region and elsewhere and an independent researcher in Womens Studies for the last thirty-five years. She has a Ph.D from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, and has several books and articles to her credit.
She has been writing from the age of 16 in Tamil and her stories have been translated into two volumes entitled A Purple Sea and In a Forest, A Deer. The latter recently shared the Hutch-Crossword award for translated fiction. The third book Fish in a Dwindling Lake was published this year by Penguin. She received the Pudumaipiththan memorial lifetime achievement award for her contribution to literature from the U S Tamil cultural organisation Vilakku in 2005. She was awarded the Lifetime Literary Achievement Award of Tamil Literary Garden, University of Toronto, Canada, for the year 2008. She was awarded the Kalaignyar Mu. Karunanidhi Porkizi award for fiction awarded by the Booksellers and Publishers’ Association of South India in the Chennai book fair, January 2011. The University of Madras awarded her for excellence in literature in the centenary celebrations of the International Women’s Day in March 2011.
She is currently the Director of SPARROW (Sound & Picture Archives for Research on Women). She lives in Mumbai with her husband, filmmaker Vishnu Mathur along with her eighteen-year-old foster daughter Khintu and her two little brothers Krishna and Sonu.


Anjali Bhardwaj

Anjali Bhardwaj is the founder of SNS, a citizens’ group set up in 2003 with a mandate to promote transparency and accountability in government functioning and to encourage active participation of citizens in governance. SNS has been accessing information on the roles and performance of elected representatives and disseminating this information in the form of Report Cards which can be used by people, especially the marginalized, to hold their representatives accountable.
Anjali Bhardwaj has been closely associated with the Right to Information movement in India since the year 2000 and is a co-convenor of the NCPRI. The NCPRI played a pivotal role in campaigning for an effective Right to Information Act in India.
In 2014, Anjali co-authored a study on the implementation of the RTI Act in India, titled ‘Peoples' Monitoring of the RTI Regime in India 2011-13’.


Anu Singh Choudhary

Anu Singh Choudhary is a Communications Consultant, Documentary Filmmaker, Writer, Editor, Translator and Blogger all rolled into one. A compulsive multitasker, Anu writes columns on women and youth empowerment, edits and translates books, and trains students and corporates on video production and creative writing. She is a trained journalist and has worked with NDTV for five years. In the past 4 years, she has directed four independent documentaries and has co-directed and scripted many others. Her debut collection of short stories 'Neela Scarf' was released this year, and has received rave reviews across several medial verticals.


Anvar Ali

Anvar Ali is a poet, Translator, Critic, Editor, Film & video writer and Lyricist from Kerela. His first collection of poems in 1999 established him as one of the prominent voices in the contemporary Malayalam poetry. His poems have been translated into various Indian and foreign languages such as Hindi, Tamil, Bengali, Kannada, English, Spanish, French, Swedish, Korean, etc. and are included in several anthologies of Malayalam as well as Indian poetry of the post-modern phase.
His books Mazhakaalam (Poetry Collection, 1999), Eternal Sculptures, (Poetry Collection in English Translation, 2007), Aatiyaati Alanja Marangale (Poetry Collection, 2009), I Rappai (Novella, 1995), Toto-Chan, the little Girl at the Window, (Translation of the Autobiographical Book by Thetsuko Kuroyanagi, 1994), Oru Gramathile Nadi (Poetry Collection by Sirpi Balasubrhamaniam Translation from Tamil, 2010) have earned him his much deserved fame.
He participated in the Writer-in-Residence Program of Literature Translation Institute, South Korea on 2007 and attended the Afro-Asian Literature Festival, 2007, Jonju, Korea and represented Indian poetry in Sharjah Book Fair, 2013 and Paju Book Festival, 2014, Korea; and Malayalam poetry in various national writers meets. He was the editor of Pakshikoottam, an avant-garde literary magazine and publishing house in Malayalam (1987-91), Co-editor of Space for Poetry, an exclusive journal for contemporary poetry, and Chief Editor (CD Rom) of 75 years of Malayalam cinema.
He is the recipient of ‘Kunchu Pillai’ Award for young Poets in 1992; ‘Kanakasree Award’ for Mazhakalam in 2000; The ‘South-South Film Encounter Award’ (Asselieh, Morocco), ‘Fajr International Film Festival Award’ (Teheran, Iran), and the Kerala State Award for the scenario Margam (2003), a well reputed Indian movie.

Arjun Choudhuri

Arjun Choudhuri translates both prose and poetry from Bangla, Hindi, and Sanskrit into English. Besides his academic writing, he also writes poetry and short fiction in English and has been published widely in literary journals and magazines in both India and abroad. His poetry collections include In the House Next Door (Writers Workshop, 2006), Metrophobia (Aquarius, 2012) and Rain Tree Deity (Le Editions du Zaporogue, 2014). His anthology of translated Bengali poetry from Assam, titled Bordering Poetry (Vyatikram, 2010) received critical acclaim for its sensitive representation of Bengali writing in Assam and from across Indias Northeast. Arjun works as an assistant professor of English at Gurucharan College, Silchar, Assam.

Arunava Sinha

Arunava Sinha translates classic, modern and contemporary Bengali fiction and nonfiction into English. Twice the winner of the Crossword translation award, for Sankar's Chowringhee (2007) and Anita Agnihotri's Seventeen (2011), respectively, he has also been shortlisted for The Independent Foreign Fiction prize (2009) for his translation of Chowringhee. Besides India, his translations have been published in the UK and the US in English, and in several European and Asian countries through further translation. He was born and grew up in Kolkata, and lives and writes in New Delhi.

Presently, he is head of the Department of English and Modern European Languages, University of Allahabad. He teaches twentieth century English poetry and creative writing. In 2009, he was nominated for the chair of Professor of Poetry at the University of Oxford.


Arundhathi Subramaniam

Arundhathi Subramaniam is the author of four books of poetry, most recently When God is a Traveller (Harper Collins). Widely translated and anthologized, her new book is the Winter Choice of the Poetry Book Society, UK, shortlisted for the TS Eliot Poetry Prize. She has worked over the years as curator, arts journalist and poetry editor. She has been Head of of Indian Dance and Head of Chauraha, an interactive arts forum at the National Centre for the Performing Arts, Mumbai, for several years. She has also been Editor of the India domain of the Poetry International Web since its inception, a project that has grown into a significant web archive of contemporary Indian poetry in translation. Her articles have appeared in The Times of India, The Hindu and other publications.


Arunesh Neeran

Arunesh Neeran is secretary general, Vishwa Bhojpuri Sammelan. Hailing from Deoria, Uttar Pradesh, he has several publications in Hindi and Bhojpuri and is a noted academician in his field.


Arvind Mohan

Arvind Mohan Mishra is a writer and translator. He has worked at various editorial posts with Amar Ujala, Hindustan, India Today (Hindi), Jansatta, and at the Centre for Study of Developing Societies, Delhi, and is currently working as consultant with ABP News and Shrinews TV.
He is the recipient of numerous awards which include Bhartendu Puraskar and Hindi Academy's Kriti Award. He has published 8 books which includes his book book on migrant Bihari labourers in Punjab Pravasi Mazdooron Ki Pira. He has edited 2 books. He has translated many writers from many fields including Amartya Sen, Mrinal Pande and the Noble laureate Paul Krugman. He has also translated around 500 articles for both Sarvottam, Reader's Digest.


Asad Zaidi

Asad Zaidi is a well-known Hindi poet and writer. His first collection of poems Behnen aur anya kavitaen (1980) established him as a distinctive voice in contemporary Hindi poetry. He has published two more collections since: Kavita ka jivan (1988) and Saman ki talash (2008). All the three books were brought out this year in a single volume under the name Sare Sham.
He has also been writing on poetry, art, cinema, culture and politics and has edited a number of anthologies which include a two-volume book, Das Baras: Hindi kavita Ayodhya ke baad. He has also been a keen translator of poetry from all over the world.
He runs an independent publishing house called Three Essays Collective which brings out books on contemporary concerns with a social science perspective, and edits 'Jalsa', annual anthology of new writings and translations in Hindi.


Ashok Vajpeyi

Ashok Vajpeyi, a Hindi poet-critic, translator, editor and culture-activist, is a major cultural figure of India. With more than 13 books of poetry, 7 of criticism in Hindi and 3 books on art in English to his credit, he is widely recognized as an outstanding promoter of culture and an innovative institution-builder. Over the years he has worked tirelessly to enhance the mutual awareness and interaction between Indian and foreign cultures. A frequent presence at some of the major conferences, seminars and poetry-festivals, he has raised his voice for the autonomy of literature and arts as against contemporary tyrannies of ideologies, markets and fundamentalism. As editor of many prestigious journals he has done much to promote critical awareness of contemporary and classical arts and young talent in poetry and criticism. As an organizer he has more than a thousands events to his credit relating to literature, music, dances, theater, visual arts, folk and tribal arts, cinema etc. He has been awarded the Sahitya Akademi Award, the Dayawati Kavi Shekhar Samman and the Kabir Samman.
He has written two large books on Indian master Sayed Haider Raza and also one on 7 contemporary Indian abstract painters. He set up the renowned multi-arts center Bharat Bhavan in Bhopal; has been the first Vice-Chancellor of Mahatma Gandhi International Hindi University (set up by Govt. of India). For more than a year he doubled up as the Director General of the National Museum, New Delhi and as the Vice-Chairman National Museum of Man, Bhopal.
A prominent public intellectual of India, he has been a creative global-trotter and visited Europe many times to attend conferences, deliver lectures and give readings. Has been a writer in-residence at Jamia Millia Islamia University and a fellow of K.K. Birla Foundation. He lives in Delhi after retiring from civil service. He has been decorated by the President of Republic of Poland by the outstanding national award ‘The Officer’s Cross of Merit of the Republic of Poland’, the French Govt. by the award of ‘Officier De L’Ordre Des Arts Et Des Lettres’ and the Embassy of Romania to India by the award ‘Best Promoter of Indo-Romanian Relations’.



Badri Narayan

Badri Narayan is a Social Historian and Cultural Anthropologist and currently Professor at the G.B. Pant Social Science Institute, Allahabad. His wide ranging interests cover culture, memory and politics, contemporary histories, ethnography of marginalized politics, social and anthropological history, dalit and subaltern issues and Identity formation and the question of power. He has been a fellow at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla (1998-99), Visiting Fellow at the International Institute of Asian Studies, University of Leiden, The Netherlands (2002) and HGIS Fellow at the Royal Tropical Institute, Amsterdam (2001). He was a recipient of the Fulbright Senior Fellowship (September 2005-April 2006) and the Smuts Fellowship, University of Cambridge (February 2007 – October 2007). Besides having written a number of articles both in English and Hindi, he has authored Kanshiram: Leader of the Dalits , 2014 (Penguin), The Making of the Dalit Public in North India: Uttar Pradesh 1950-present, 2011 (Oxford), Fascinating Hindutva – Saffron Politics and Dalit Mobilisation, 2009 (Sage), Women Heroes and Dalit Assertion in North India, 2006 (Sage), Documenting Dissent,2001. His Hindi publications include Pratirodh Ki Sanskriti, 2012 (Vani prakashan), Lok Sanskriti Aur Itihaas, 1994 (Lokbharti prakashan), Lok Sanskriti Mein Rashtravaad, 1996 (Radhakrishna prakashan). He has also completed various national and international projects successfully.
He is also the Coordinator of Dalit Resource Centre at GB Pant Social Science Institute. He is a renowned Hindi poet and his anthologies of poems namely Sach Sune Kai Din Huye, Shabdpadiyam and Khudai Mein Hinsa have received wide acclaim. Due to his academic and literary contribution, he was awarded Mira Smriti Puraskaar (2012), Shamsher Samman (2012) Spandan Kriti Samman(2010), Kedar Samman(2006), Banarasi Prasad Bhojpuri Samman(2002) and Banarasi Prasad Bhojpuri Samman(2002).


Balram Shukla

Balram Shukla is a writer, scholar, and educator of Sanskrit literature and language. Along with Sanskrit, he also specializes in Persian. He has lectured on various Sanskrit and Persian topics and is arguably one of the best scholars of both languages in the country. He has translated several poets from all over the world, and also has one poetry collection each of Sanskrit and Persian awaiting publication.


Bajrang Bihari Tiwari

Bajrang Bihari Tiwari is associate professor, Hindi, in Delhi University’s Deshbandhu College.
He is the co-editor of Indian Literature: An Introduction and Yathasthiti se Takrate Huye: Dalit Stree Jeevan se Judi Kahaniyan. More than ten research articles and many review pieces by him have been published. For IGNOU and other universities, he has been contributing study material and he has a column, 'Dalit Prashna', on Indian Dalit literature in Kathadesh, a Hindi monthly published from Delhi.
His academic interests are Dalit writing and discourse, language controversy in the Hindi belt during the freedom struggle and contemporary Sanskrit literature.


Benju Sharma

Benju Sharma is a Napalese poet and short story writer. She has a Master’s in Nepali literature and a Ph. D in Ancient Nepalese History, Culture and Archeology.
Benju has published four poetry collections, and three works of fiction, most of which expresses a severe criticism of the society, its centuries-old superstitious beliefs. Her works aspire for a society free of all forms of domination, equipped with democratic rights and ideal human values.
Benju has received five gold medals, and more than 20 honours and awards. She has been a member of Nepal Academy, and the chairperson of Nepal Television. Currently, she works as Secretary of Tiwari Literary Society, and Vice President of Nepalese Writer's Association.


Bhanwar Meghwanshi

Bhanwar Meghwanshi is a noted Dalit rights activist, based in Bhilwara district of Rajasthan. A powerful voice of the oppressed, Bhanwar has lent strength to the struggles and the lives of many. He has authored several books and over 200 pieces in various publications. The Dalit movements in Bhilwara led to the birth of the Dalit Adiwasi Ghumantu Adhikar Abhiyan (DAGAR) which has today emerged as a platform to seek immediate redress in cases of extreme atrocities against Dalits in Bhilwara and nearby districts. Today, DAGAR is a network of over 5000 individuals from various Dalit communities in Bhilwara who are active, sensitive youths responding to the injustices of Dalit atrocities, who observe constitutional methods to seek justice to Dalit victims, and who take to protests, dharnas and sit­ins when the Dalit voice is not heard by the administration.
Bhanwar’s awards include the Bheruka Charitable Trust Award For the Best Rural Journalist (2005), Social Justice Award on Media in Jaipur (2006), Sarojini Naidu Award in New Delhi (2007) and Citizen for Peace, Indian Express Award in Mumbai (2008), Best Citizen Journalist Award (2014). Bhanwar has undertaken numerous yatras and abhiyans over the years.



Damodar Mauzo

Born in Goa in 1944, Damodar Mauzo is a novelist and short fiction writer. He has three novels, five collections of short stories and five other books to his credit. He is also a scriptwriter who has written the screen play for an award-winning film, Aleesha and dialogues for two more films. A film was also made on his novella, Sood, for which he has written the script himself. For nearly ten years he wrote a column in the local daily, Sunaparant, where he wrote critical appreciation of the stories appearing in its Sunday magazine. Mauzo has bagged many state and national level awards for his works. His Sahitya Akademi award winning novel, Karmelin has been translated into over a dozen languages. Tsunami Simon, another award winning novel for young adults has been published by Ponytale Books in translation. Katha Publication also has published an English translation of his stories, These Are My Children, while Rupa Publications’ Teresa’s Man and other stories from Goa had the international launch at the recent Frankfurt Book Fair. He is the co-founder and curator of the Goa Art & Literature Festival held annually in Goa.


Danish Hussain

Danish Husain, born as Murtaza Danish Husaini is a renowned Dastango. He is well known for his work in Peepli (Live)(2010), Losing Gemma (2006) and Kaash (2007).



Fakrul Alam

Fakrul Alam is an academic, a literary critic, essayist and editor as well as a translator from Bengali. He is Professor of English at the University of Dhaka. He is the editor at Six Seasons Review and a member of the Editorial Board of Jamini. He received the SAARC Literature Award 2012 and was awarded the Bangla Academy Puroshkar (Literature Award) in the Translation category for 2013.
He has published a lot of books like Imperial Entanglements and Literature in English, South Asian Writers in English, Jibanananda Das: Selected Poems, Bharati Mukherjee and Daniel Defoe: Colonial Propagandist. Among his more recent works is The Essential Tagore, co-authored with Radha Chakravarty. He has translated Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s Unfinished Memoirs and has been editor of Dhaka University Studies, Part A (Humanities) and the Asiatic Society Journal, and guest-editor of a special issue of the Asiatic on South Asian diasporic writing (June 2012).



Gillian Wright

Gillian Wright was born and brought up in the UK, left school in 1976 and joined the BBC External Services, working in the Eastern Service in the Hindi, then Urdu and Sinhala Services. It was then that she began learning Urdu, and subsequently went to the School of Oriental and African Studies and did a degree in South Asian Studies, which was an honours degree in Urdu with Hindi, Politics and South Asian history as subsidiary subjects. She has lived most of her life since then in India where she has worked as a journalist, researcher, radio producer and translator. With her partner, Mark Tully, she has worked on many books – for example No Full Stops in India and India in Slow Motion. She was co-author to the first photo-guide of the birds of the Indian sub-continent. She has also written an Introduction to the Hill Stations of India, and a similar book on Sri Lanka, and most recently The Darjeeling Tea Book about Darjeeling and tea from its beginnings to the present day. From Hindi she has translated Raag Darbari by Shrilal Shukla and Adha Gaon (A Village Divided) by Rahi Masoom Reza, and Middle India - Bhisham Sahni’s own selection of his own favourite short stories.

Giriraj Kiradoo

Poet and fiction writer Giriraj Kiradoo is founder-editor of the widely acclaimed bilingual journal Pratilipi, and founder-managing director of the avante garde publishing initiative Pratilipi Books. He has edited seven books, and published poetry, fiction and translation in numerous reputed journals. Some of his work has been translated into Urdu, Marathi, Catalan and English. A recipient of the Bharat Bhushan Agrawal Smruti Poetry Award and the Krishna Baldev Vaid Fellowship for fiction, he is a translator in Hindi, English and Rajasthani.
Before switching to Primary Education in 2014, he taught English at various universities and colleges. He has also worked with the Rajasthan Sahitya Akademi as associate editor, with Siyahi as consultant, with the Sangam House International Writer's Residency Program as an adviser, and is currently a regular collaborator with the French poetry journal Recours au Poème. Kiradoo is a passionate organizer of many literary events; he is one of the two creative directors of Samanvay: IHC Indian Languages' Festival, an event he curates and coordinates with Satyanand Nirupam. With fellow poets Bodhisattva and Ashok Kumar Pandey, he co-founded and organized the biggest independent poetry event in Hindi, Kavita Samay, for two years (2011-12).


Harish Iyer

Harish is one of the most vocal voices for the LGBT campaign worldwide. An Equal Rights Activist, he is best known for his campaigns for the rights of Homosexuals, Women, Children and Animals. His life and experiences have been the subject of a book and two movies. Harish's childhood was scarred by repeated sexual abuse. But with a little help from his animal friends, Harish learnt to take the lemons life handed him and make sweet lemonade.
He is listed at #71 in the World Pride Powerlist 2013, sharing the honour with Stephen Fry, Ricky Martin, Elton John, Martina Navratilova to name a few. He is the only Indian National in the list. Harish won the Network18 Zindagi Live Award for his work in creating awareness on the issue of child sexual abuse. He is best known for turning his personal blog as a helpline during the 26/11 terror attacks.
Harish Iyer has been seen as an opinion maker and as a panelist in several channels like - CNN, BBC, AL Jazeera, Australian Network, New York Radio, Washington Radio, BBC Radio, NDTV, CNN IBN, Times Now, ABP News, India TV, News X, Focus TV, Aaj Tak, Radio Mirchi, Radio One, Radio City, Red FM and many more. In 2013 he appeared in the India chapter of Stephen Fry's documentary - OUT THERE where the British Actor chronicled lives of LGBT persons across the world. In 2012, Harish appeared on the most popular chat show hosted and produced by Bollywood Actor - Aamir Khan called Satyamev Jayate. In 2014, Iyer featured in a quirky PETA video where he urged viewers to "love cock".


Himanshu Pandya

Himanshu Pandya teaches Hindi in Dungarpur, Rajasthan. He is associated with the Jan Sanskriti Manch. He is currently conducting research on the Navjagaran Kaal. His primary areas of interest are cultural studies, children’s literature and pedagogy. He has been a member of the text book committee of NCERT and has consistently been publishing on important Hindi novelists and fiction writers.



Irshad Kamil

Irshad Kamil is a Hindi/Urdu poet and lyricist. He has written songs for many Bollywood hits like Jab We Met, Chameli, Love Aaj Kal, Rockstar, Aashiqui 2 and Raanjhnaa.After starting his career by writing for television in 1998, Kamil later worked with musician Sandesh Shandilya. Kamil has won several awards for songs like Chor Bazari and Aaj Din Chadheya from Love Aaj Kal. He also wrote the lyrics of Rockstar for which he has also been awarded the Filmfare Award for best lyrics for song Naadaan Parindey . Kamil has also been associated with English journalism.



Jerry Pinto

Jerry Pinto is the author of Em and the Big Hoom (Aleph) for which he won the Hindu Lit for Life Award and the Crossword Award. It is being translated into Marathi, Italian and French. He has also written Helen: the life and times of an H-Bomb (Penguin) for which he won the National Award. He translated Sachin Kundalkar's first novel Cobalt Blue (Penguin) which was shortlisted for the DSC Fiction Prize. With Garima Gupta, he crafted a graphic novel, When Crows are White (Scholastic), which was shortlisted for the Crossword Award for Children's Fiction. He teaches journalism at the Sophia Institute of Social Communications Media, a post-graduate course. He has just finished translating Daya Pawar’s autobiography, Baluta (Granthali, 1978).



K Satchidanandan

K. Satchidanandan is a poet of national and international repute writing in Malayalam. He has a doctorate in post-Structuralist poetics and was Professor of English at Christ College, University of Calicut, Kerala, editor of Indian Literature, the journal of the Sahitya Akademi (The National Academy of Letters) and later the Chief Executive of the Akademi. He then worked as a Language Policy Consultant for the Government of India and has also been associated with Katha, Delhi. He edits the SAARC journal Beyond Borders in English, the poetry quarterly Kerala Kavita in Malayalam and the South Asian Library of Literature. At present he is Director and Professor, School of Translation Studies and Training, Indira Gandhi National Open University, Delhi. He is also on the Project Advissory Board of Indian Literature Abroad, a Government of India Initiative.
He has 21 collections of poetry in Malayalam besides 16 collections of world poetry in translation and 23 collections of critical essays and interviews besides four collections of essays in English. He has edited several anthologies of poetry and prose in Malayalam, English and Hindi. He has 27 collections of his poems in translation in 17 languages, including five collections in English, six in Hindi and one each in Arabic, German, French and Italian besides all the major Indian languages. He has won 21 awards for his literary contribution including Bharatiya Bhasha Parishad Award (Kolkata), Gangadhar Meher Award (Orissa), Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award (4 times), Kumaran Asan Award (Chennai), Bapureddy National Award (Hyderabad), Kerala Varma Award, Ulloor Award, P. Kunhiraman Nair Award, Odakkuzhal Award, Vayalar Award, Beharain Keraleeya Samajam Award, Oman Cultural Centre Award, Kadammanitta Ramakrishnan Award (Kuwait), NTR National Award (Andhra Pradesh), Patmaprabha Award etc. besides Sahityasree from the Hindi Sahitya Sammelan, Delhi, a Senior Fellowship from the Department of Culture, Government of India, the Sreekant Verma Fellowship from the Government of Madhya Pradesh and the K.K. Birla Fellowship for Comparative Literature. Many of his books of poetry and criticism have been textbooks in Universities. A film on him, Summer Rain, was released in 2007.
Satchidanandan has represented India in several international literary events like the international literary festivals in Sarajevo, Berlin, Montreal, Beijing, Moscow, Ivry-sur-Seine, Jaipur, Delhi, Montreal, Hay Festival (Trivandrum) and Kovalam and book fairs at Delhi, Lahore, Kolkata, Abu Dhabi, Frankfurt, Leipzig, London, Paris and Moscow besides having readings and talks at Bonn, Rome, Verona, Ravenna, Leiden, New York, St. Petersburg, Damascus, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Oman, Sharjah, Singapore etc. besides most of the cities in India. Satchidanandan has been honoured with Knighthood by the Government of Italy, with the Dante Medal by the Dante Institute, Ravenna and the India-Poland Friendship Medal by the Government of Poland. He has also been an activist for secularism, environment and human rights.


Kattam Sitaram

Kattam Sitaram, presently living in Kota, has a masters degree in Politics and has worked as a teacher with 16 years of experience. He has worked relentlessly towards the translation and assimilation of Daroli language (which is getting extinct) into Hindi. He has always dedicated his time to languages which at present are fast evading from the linguistic map of our country.


Kaustav Banerjee

Kaustav Banerjee is currently Assistant Professor at the Centre for the Study of Discrimination & Exclusion, School of Social Sciences, JNU. He is an economist specializing in agrarian systems and developmental policy. He has 9 years of field based research experience in the most backward districts of the country and has also been involved with the policy formulation and implementation process of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, 2005. Prior to joining the Centre, he was teaching at the Centre for Development Studies, Trivandrum. Earlier, he co-ordinated an Economic Research Unit on Rainfed Agrarian-Livestock Systems in India and was based at the Centre for Studies in Science Policy, JNU. Additionally, he had been an Advisor to the Core Group of the Socio-Economic & Caste Census, 2011, Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India which involved formulation of the pilot methodology and training of state level enumerators.


Koushiki Dasgupta

A university teacher by profession Koushiki Dasgupta has done her Ph.D on late colonial Bengal politics. Her first published book is ‘Minor Political Parties and the Language of Politics in late colonial Bengal (2012). She received Charles Wallace Research grant for post doctoral research in UK in 2014 and currently working on a project called ‘ Beauty, Body and Media. She delivered a speech at different international conferences in India and abroad. Apart from publishing academic papers she has published poetries, commentaries and literary essays in different journals. She has one collection of poetry, ‘Meao` and a novel under publication.


KR Meera

KR Meera is a renowned writer of Malayalam. Meera, born in Kollam district of Kerala, worked as a journalist in Malayala Manorama, but later resigned to concentrate more on writing. She is also a well-known column-writer in Malayalam. She has also been noted as a screenplay writer of four serials. She was credited as the associate in writing for the film Ore Kadal, a National Award winner.
Meera has won numerous awards for her contribution to Malayali language, including the the Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award in 2009 for her short-story, Ave Maria. She has to her authorship for novels and numeruous collections of short stories.


Kutti Revathi

Kutti Revathi is a lyricist, poet, activist and doctor. She took a long literary tour in Spain in 2012, for the organization, Implicadas, with the renowned writer Maria Reimondez being part of the set up to assess the activities of feminists and reconstruct it for the better. She has been a part of constructing a women movement "Pengal Iykkiya Munnani", traveling to all the corners of Tamil Nadu for two years from 2006. The movement later became a political party.
She has been part of Poetry International Festival 2014 in July, at the Southbank Centre, poetry International set up by Ted Hughes in 1967, and a part of ‘Reverse’, International Copenhagen Poetry Festival, held from September 18 -20, 2013 in Denmark. She has been invited to be part of FETNA CONVENTION 2014, that is going to held in July at St. Louis, USA.
She is the Editor of 'Panikkudam', a Tamil literary quarterly for women writing. Apart from that, she has been a part of various anthologies, and published various poetry collections. She has various documentaries to her credit, out of which ‘Looking Through the Glass’, with the legendary poet Kamala Das as its subject is the most popular.
She has been awarded the best lyricist of the year 2013 , by the Talk Show team, "Neeya Naana" by Vijay TV, for the song written for AR Rahman, Oscar winning Composer.



Madan Gopal Singh

Madan Gopal Singh is a composer, singer, lyricist, actor, screenwriter, film theorist and editor. He has written and lectured extensively on cinema, art and cultural history besides performing the world over as a singer with his ensemble Chaar yaar.
Madan Gopal Singh has composed and sung the poetry of Rumi, Shah Husain, Sultan Bahu and Bulle Shahand has also translated contemporary poets such as Bertolt Brecht, Federico García Lorca and even John Lennon especially his Imagine, which he translated into Hindustani – and sung them extensively. He has written dialogues and lyrics for several movies—the critically acclaimed Punjabi movie Qissa being one of them. He served as the Executive Editor, Journal of Arts and Ideas, New Delhi for nearly a decade and as a Contributing Editor,Cinemaya – the Asian Film Quarterly, for a number of years.

Manzoor Ahtesham

One of the most influential voices in contemporary Hindi writing, Manzoor Ahtesham has been publishing fiction for over three decades. He has published five novels: Kuch din aur, Sukha Bargad, Dastan-e Lapata, Basharat Manzil , and Pahar dhalte . His short story collections include Ramzan mein ek maut , Tasbih, and Tamasha tatha anya kahaniyam. He has also written several plays in collaboration with Satyen Kumar.
Manzoor Ahtesham’s works have been translated into English, German, and several Indian languages. His widely acclaimed novel Sukha Bargad was translated by Kuldip Singh as A Dying Banyan. His novel Dastan-e Lapata is currently being translated into English by Jason Grunebaum and Ulrike Stark.
He has won the ‘Padma Shri’ (2003), the ‘Bharatiya Bhasha Parishad Puruskar’, the ‘Shrikant Verma Smriti Samman’, the ‘Virsingh Deo Award’, the ‘Vageshwari Award’, the ‘Shikhar Samman’, and the ‘Pahal Samman’ for his collected works. He was also shortlisted for the Sahitya Akademi Award.
He currently lives in Bhopal, where he runs an interior decoration business and works as an independent writer.


Maya Sharma

Maya Sharma, a feminist and occasional writer, is an activist in the Indian Women’s Movement. She is, at present, working with a grassroots women’s organization, called Vikalp (Women's Group) in Baroda, Gujarat. She is the author of Loving Women: Being Lesbian in Unprivileged India (Yoda Press) and a co-author of Kiron Peh Ugati Pechan (RajKamal).


Mayank Shekhar

Mayank Shekhar has been a writer, columnist and film critic for over a decade, starting with Mid Day in Mumbai, where he helped launch Hit List, India's first entertainment daily, and Mumbai Mirror, a Times of India publication that he was in the founding team of. Thereafter his writings appeared in Hindustan Times, where he served as the National Cultural Editor.
Shekhar is the first recipient of Ramnath Goenka award for films and television journalism. He currently hosts Friday Double Bill, a film reviews' show on NDTV Prime and runs the pop-culture website TheW14.com. His forthcoming books 'Name Place Animal Thing' and 'How I Met Your Movies' will be out in 2015.


Melvyn Rodrigues

Sahitya Akademi award winner in the year 2011 for his poetry collection 'Prakriticho Paas', Melvyn Rodrigues has published 5 poetry collections, one novella, one collection of essays, one translation of Kannada short stories of Yashawant Chittala into Konkani, and has edited 5 anthologies of poems. His translation of K S Narasimhaswamy's Kannada poetry 'Tereda Bagilu' into Konkani is awaiting publication.
He is the recipient of Karnataka Konkani Sahitya Akademi honorary award, Konkani Kutam Bahrain Award and Dr T M A Pai Foundation Best Konkani Book Award.
Founder of 'Kavita Trust', he has lived for 15 years in the Middle East and at present lives in Mangalore.


Mrityunjay

Mrityunjay is a hindi poet, translator, critic and activist, currently active in the ‘Jan-Sanskriti Manch’. He is also a part of the editorial board of ‘Samkaalin Janmat’. He has two publications to his credit- Rasayatra which is the autobiography of Pandit Mallikarjun Mansoor, and a collection of poetry Syaah Haashiye.



Namwar Singh

Dr Namvar Singh is one of the most distinguished and celebrated figures in Hindi language and literature. He is currently the Chancellor of Mahatma Gandhi International Hindi University, Wardha. He is also the editor-in-chief of the quarterly publication ‘Aalochana’.
He started his career in writing as a poet in 1941. His first poem was published in the magazine ‘Kshatriyamitra’ in the same year. He engaged in independent writing through the years 1960-1965 in Banaras. He joined as editor in the weekly publication ‘Janyuga’ in Delhi in 1965. During this same time, he worked as the literary advisor for two years at Rajkamal Publications in Delhi. 1967 onwards he was the editor of the trimonthly publication ‘Aalochana’. He was awarded for literary criticism by the Sahitya Akademi with the award ‘Kavita Ke Naye Pratiman’ in 1971.


Nirupama Dutt

Nirupama Dutt is a poet, literary/art critic and journalist of many seasons, and has worked with leading newspapers and journals. Nirupama’s first anthology of poems won a Punjabi Akademi award. She has edited several fiction and poetry anthologies and translated into English major writers of Punjabi and Hindi. She works as the editor of The Sunday Indian (Punjabi) at Chandigarh.


Pankaj Chaturvedi

Pankaj Chaturvedi is most known for his writings on social issues. He has a deep involvement in Children’s Literature and related activities. Pankaj has written more than 3000 articles for almost all the major Hindi Newspapers and journals. His books—Kya Musalmaan Aise Hi Hote Hain and Dafan Hote Dariya are widely appreciated. Pankaj has written more than 25 books for children and has translated 60 boos from English to Hindi.
Pankaj Chaturvedi has been working with the Editorial section of National Book Trust, India.


Prabhat Ranjan

Fiction writer, translator and editor, Prabhat Ranjan teaches Hindi at Zakir Husain Evening College, DU. Prior to this he has worked with the Hindi daily of the Indian Express group, Jansatta, as Assistant Editor and also edited a few issues of Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalaya, Wardha’s magazine Bahuvachan.
He has published two collections of short stories Janaki Pul and Bolero Class and has translated Vikram A. Chandra’s novel Srinagar Conspiracy and Anne Frank’s Diary into Hindi. His other publications include Marquez: Jadui Yatharth ka Jadugar, a literary biography of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Neem ka Ped, a novelization of Rahi Masoom Raza’s TV series, Television Lekhan (with Asghar Wajahat) and Anchor Reporter (with Punya Prasoon Joshi).
Janaki Pul, the story, won him the Sahara Samay Katha Prize (2004). He was awarded the Premchand Samman in 2007, and the Best Blogger award for the year 2014 for his blog ‘jankipul’ by ABP News.


Paranjoy Guha Thakurta

Paranjoy Guha Thakurta is an independent journalist, an educator, a writer, speaker, anchor, interviewer, teacher and commentator in three languages: English, Bengali and Hindi. His work experience, spanning over 37 years, cuts across different media: print, radio, television and documentary cinema. His main areas of interest are the working of the political economy and the media in India and the world.
He has co-authored a book with Shankar Raghuraman entitled: “A Time of Coalitions: Divided We Stand”, published by Sage Publications India in March 2004. He is a director/producer of documentary films. “Idiot Box or Window of Hope”, which examines the impact of television on Indian society, was produced by the Public Service Broadcasting Trust (PSBT) in 2003 and broadcast on Doordarshan.


Praveen Pandya

A young poet of Sanskrit, analyst and scholar, Dr. Praveen Pandya was born in the Jalore District of Rajasthan. Praveen has published poetry, critical essays, four translations—summing up to 15 books. He received the Sahitya Akademi Yuva Puraskar for his second collection of poetry Udbaahuvamaanata (2006). Praveen is known for having translated Gandhi’s much celebrated Hind Swaraj into Sanskrit.
Praveen has found a place in different leading anthologies of Sanskrit Poetry. He is a scholar of Vedas, Upanishads, ad Sanskrit Literature. At present, Praveen Pandya, along with teaching in a college, is involved into the study of Yajurveda.


Pundalik Narayan Nayak

Pundalik Narayan Naik, who has rendered his noble service as a teacher, joined All India Radio as Sub-Editor and Assistant Editor, leaving his job only to devote his time completely to writing. He has been honoured by a fellowship by the Department of Tourism, Government of India. He has been appointed the President of the Goa Konkani Academy by the Government of India.
He has efficiently dedicated himself to writing and translated novels, stories, poems and plays into English and many other languages. He has been awarded the Sahitya Akademi award in 1984 and the Sahitya Natak Akademi award for playwriting in 2013. He has written around 30 plays, 2 poems, 5 one-act plays, and has also written the story, screenplay, dialogues and lyrics for 16 films.



Radhavallabh Tripathi

Radhavallabh Tripathi is a well-known poet, short-story and playwright of Sanskrit. He has 25 books of original writings in Sanskrit, including six collections of poems, two plays and one collection of one act plays. He has translated more than 25 plays from Sanskrit in Hindi.
Widely acclaimed for his original contributions to the study of Nāṭyaśāstra and Sāhityaśāstra, Prof. Tripathi has published 162 books, 221 research papers and critical essays as well as translations of more than 30 Sanskrit plays and some classics from Sanskrit into Hindi.
He has been referred in various research journals on Indology. Research for Ph.D. has been completed as well as is being carried on his creative writings in Sanskrit in a number of Universities. Three Journals brought out special numbers on his writings. Seven books comprising studies on his creative and critical writings by other authors have been published.
He has received 33 national and international awards and honours for his literary contributions.
One of the senior-most professors of Sanskrit in the country, Prof Radhavallabh Tripathi has served as the Vice-Chancellor of Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan at Delhi for five years (2008-13), as Vice Chancellor on additional charge at Shri Lal Bahadur Shasri Sanskrit Vidyapeeth for six months and as Vice Chancellor in charge of Dr. H.S. Gour University on a number of occasions. He worked as Visiting Professor at Silpakorn University, Bangkok for three years. He retired as Professor from Dr. Harisingh Gour University, Sagar (M.P., India) as Professor in February, 2014.


Raj Liberhan

Raj Liberhan served in the Government of India’s financial services for thirty years, before moving to the non-governmental sector to head the India Habitat Centre in 1995.
He has varied experience with a wide range of responsibilities at the senior level in government, public sector and NGO environments, building and sustaining organisations, programmes and missions with sector specific objectives and services.
His profile includes creating and sustaining economic and financial systems for large organizations, financial evaluation and negotiation of contracts, budget formulation and management, resource mobilisation and fund management; processing of project approvals vis-à-vis their feasibility, economic viability and funding patterns, monitoring their implementation, and identification and finalisation of organisations’ investments.
As Chief Executive of the India Habitat Centre, for nineteen years, he has helped create a unique institutional mechanism where various professions and institutions dealing with different facets of habitat function, interact, and attempt to resolve habitat related problems in a coordinated manner; and cooperate and collaborate with other national or international institutions. He has created numerous cultural and intellectual platforms to anchor societal discourse on issues of concern and has sought to integrate governance paradigms for institutional performance.


Rajeev Ranjan Prasad

Rajeev Ranjan Prasad is a writer, editor and environmentalist, known for his book Aamcho Bastar. He has also been involved with IPTA and is the founder-editor of Sahitya Shilpi.


Rajendra Dhodapkar

A journalist by occupation, Rajendra Dhodapkar is a very famous cartoonist in India as well. He started his journalistic career with Jansatta and is presently associated with Hindustan. He has 3 plays and a collection of poetry published under the title of Do Baarishein. He has translated the celebrated Malayali poet, K. Satchidanandan. He has also written and assisted in the direction of many short films and television serials. He was felicitated with the ‘Bharatbhushan Agarwal Puraskar’ for poetry in 1983.


Rakesh Kacker

Shri Rakesh Kacker did his BA in Economics from Hindu College, Delhi and his Masters in Economics from Delhi School of Economics in 1974. Thereafter he taught at the under-graduate level in Delhi University for three years before joining the Indian Administrative Service in 1977. Shri Kacker has worked in the Government of Tamil Nadu and the Government of India. He retired from Government of India as Secretary, Ministry of Food Processing Government of India.
He has also worked in The Energy Research Institute (TERI) and in the Indian Wind Energy Association (INWEA).
He took over as Director , India Habitat Centre on 1st September 2014.


Rakesh Kumar Singh

Having worked closely with Sarai-CSDS, Rakesh Kumar Singh has been successfully hobnobbing with themes like Media, City, Market and Labour. He has also edited a series named 'Medianagar', a student magazine called ‘Udghosh’, and magazines called ‘Feyara’ and ‘Humshahari’.
Along with his keen interest, or as he calls it, ‘addiction’ with writing, he has also worked in the field of corporate communication, media management and PR. He is known for his off-and-on experiments in the field of social media. He has taken up sensitive issues of caste and gender in his writings. Female foeticide, gang-rape, acid attacks, and gender studies and its perception in India have found focus in his writings. His initiative ‘Ride for Gender Freedom’ tackles with the same issues.


Ram Gopal Bajaj

Ram Gopal Bajaj is a noted Indian theatre director, academician, and a Hindi film actor. He has also been a faculty member and a former director of National School of Drama, New Delhi (1995–September 2001). He is a famous personality in contemporary modern Indian theatre. He was associated with the weekly hindi publication ‘Dinmaan’ as a critic. He was also the Head of the National School of Drama from the years 1988-1994. Presently he is the principal of acting and the director of the National School of Drama.
He was felicitated in 1992 by ‘Dilli Sahitya Kala Parishad’ and by ‘Nandikaar Samman’ in 1998. He was awarded the Padma Shri in 2003 and Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1996 for his contribution to theatre.


Ravi Ravinder

Dr. Ravinder Kumar alias Dr. Ravi Ravinder is an Associate Professor in the Department of Punjabi, University of Delhi. He has 16 years teaching experience. He has authored and edited ten books. He has published and presented 50 Research Papers at National and International level Journals, seminars and conferences. Including member of Punjabi Advisory Board, Sahitya Akademi (National Academy of Letters), New Delhi, he is also the member of various academic and research bodies. He is the creator and editor of a unique website, which provides information about Punjabi Short Story Writers and their short stories. This website has the distinction of being the first individually developed website created to promote and internationalize Punjabi literature, specifically Punjabi short-story. He has been honored with Bibi Swarn Kaur Purskar by Nawan Zamana Trust and Dr. Karmjit Singh Alochna Purskar.


Rizio Yohannan Raj

Rizio Yohannan Raj is a bi-lingual writer, translator and educationist. Her works include three collections of poetry in English—Eunuch, Naked by the Sabarmati and Other Guna Poems, Exchanges with the Thinker, and two novels in Malayalam—Avinasom and Yatrikom, the first of which is translated into English as A Tale of Things Timeless (Harper Collins 2012). She has translated major 20th century Malayalam writers into English, and introduced seminal works from other languages in Malayalam. Her academic works include a pioneering volume on Comparative Literature, Quest of a Discipline: New Academic Directions for Comparative Literature. She has also been a journalist, an editor and a publisher. Her last assignment in publishing was at ‘Katha’, New Delhi, as Head of Publishing. She is the founder-director of a trust dedicated to the cause of education and life appreciation, LILA Foundation For Translocal Initiatives, and presently works towards developing LILA as a cultural think-tank, and action platform and a dynamic conservation space.


Rudra Narayan Panigrahi

Rudra Narayan Panigrahi who is employed as an assistant veterinary physician in Jagdalpur, has rendered his creative flair through poems, write ups, stories and satires in many journals and magazines. He has written, directed and performed in a great number of plays in both Hindi and Halbi, in the last thirty year. Rudra has written, directed and performed in ‘Mahlakari’, the first Telefilm of the bastar region. He has also been awarded six times, for outstanding performances in Akhil Bhartiya Competitions. Rudra has edited works like Bastar Ek Parichay, Ateet se Avagat. He has acted in ‘Bhumkal’, a film featured by Bhopal Doordarshan and in 25 telefilms featured by Raipur and Jagdalpur Doordarshan.



Saleem Kidwai

Saleem Kidwai studied at Delhi University and McGill University, Montreal and taught medieval India history at Ramjas College, University of Delhi for twenty years. Since his premature retirement in 1993 he has been an independent scholar-researcher. He has co-authored with Ruth Vanita Same-Sex Love in India - A literary history. He has edited and translated the memoirs of the late singer Malka Pukhraj Song Sung True. Among others, he has translated the short stories of Syed Rafiq Husain (Mirror of Wonders). Kidwai has also been active in the lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender movement for the last three decades.


Salma

Salma is a well-known name to readers of contemporary Tamil literature. With two volumes of poetry – Oru Maalaiyum Innoru Maalaiyum and Pacchai Devadai, and a Novel—Irandaam Jaamangalin Kadhai—all of which have been translated to several languages, Salma has made her mark as a distinctive literary voice. Lakshmi Holmstrom’s English translation of her novel, titled The Hour Past Midnight, was recently shortlisted for the Crossword Book Prize. Salma’s poetry and fiction have carved an undeniable place in the Tamil literary terrain for the articulation of desire and sexuality as well as the emotions that animate the domestic space every day, subjects that are often considered beneath literary consideration.
Salma has been the recipient of several awards and honours, and has also been a special invitee to several book festivals and seminars. She was the only representative of Tamil literature at the London Book Fair in 2009. In 2007, the University of Chicago organized a two-day seminar, as part of the annual Norman J. Cutler Conference, to discuss her literary works. Channal 4’s film on her life, lilted ‘SALMA’ released at many international film festivals and received several awards.
Besides being a woman of letters, Salma has also been a committed public servant. She was the elected President of the Ponnampatti Panchayat, 2001-2006, and served as the Chairman of the Social Welfare Board, Govt. of Tamil Nadu, during which time she was instrumental in establishing several welfare schemes, including the welfare of the Aravani/Hijra community in Tamil Nadu.


Sanjay Chauhan

Sanjay Chauhan is an acclaimed screenwriter for Hindi Cinema. Born and brought up in Bhopal, Sanjay Chauhan started his career as a journalist in Delhi, before moving to Mumbai after he wrote crime TV series, Bhanwar for Sony TV in late 1990s. He has written the story and screenplay for several critically acclaimed movies, including I am Kalam, Maine Gandhi ko Nahin Maara, and Paan Singh Tomar. He has also written the dialogue for movies—Hazaron Khwahishein Aisi being one of them. He won the Filmfare Award for Best Story for I Am Kalaam (2011), and Paan Singh Tomar (2012), which he co-wrote with Tigmanshu Dhulia.


Sanjay Sharma

Dr. Sanjay Sharma is an Associate Professor in History at Ambedkar University Delhi. He is a historian, translator and media practitioner. He was educated at Allahabad University (B.A.), Jawaharlal Nehru University (M.A.), Delhi University (M.Phil) and School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London (Ph.D). He has researched on aspects of famine, relief, food security, drought, environmental degradation, state welfarism and philanthropy in modern India. He is the author of Famine, Philanthropy and the Colonial State: North India in the Early Nineteenth Century (New Delhi, Oxford University Press, 2001) and is the Co-editor of Diwaan-e-Sarai, CSDS, Delhi. In addition to teaching and research, he has worked as a journalist and radio broadcaster for the Hindi service of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).


Satyanand Nirupam

Satyanand Nirupam is editorial director, Rajkamal Prakashan Group, and creative director, Samanvay: IHC Indian Languages’ Festival. In the past, he has worked with Delhi Press as associate editor and with Penguin Books India as editor. In his years with Penguin, he steadily built a list of important titles, by established as well as emerging authors, focusing exclusively on original works. These offbeat titles spoke to the evolving needs of Hindi readership, which he continued to serve through Rajkamal's many imprints. Nirupam plays an active role in promoting a book-reading culture and debates-discussions in Hindi through all possible media channels.
As member, programme advisory committee, India Habitat Centre (New Delhi), he coordinates a poetry reading series called Kavi ke Sath. He has also been coordinator and co-concept developer for Bahastalab, a popular debate series. With a deep understanding of the tradition of Hindi writing and a strongly felt need for innovation in it, he works with authors. His interaction with various kinds of Hindi readers is an effort to appreciate their concerns and expectations better.
He believes in constantly striving for novelty in Hindi literature to keep pace with a fast-changing world so its rich works can be widely appreciated. He wants to work for a continued dialogue between Hindi writing and the young generation, so both learn to love each other and an increasing number of youth enter the world of publishing. Bringing literature and litterateurs to people is what Nirupam loves doing best.


Saurabh Shukla

Saurabh Shukla a celebrated film, theatre and television actor, director and screenwriter is best known for his work in films like Satya , Barfi!, and Jolly LLB.
Beginning his career with theatre, Saurabh Shukla became a part of the NSD Repertoire Company – the professional wing of the National School of Drama. His film career began with Shekhar Kapur’s Bandit Queen, and since then Saurabh Shukla has acted in more than 60 movies. His biggest break came when he co-wrote the script for Ram Gopal Varma's 1998 cult classic Satya and essayed the role of gangster ‘Kallu Mama’ in the film. He won the Star Screen Award for Best Screenplay alongside Anurag Kashyap.
Saurabh Shukla has written the screenplay for more than a dozen films. In 2003, he wrote the screenplay for Calcutta Mail. He received his first award for this film, the Zee Cine Award for Best Screenplay. In 2008, he acted in his first international film, the Golden Globe and Academy Award winning Slumdog Millionaire, as the character Constable Srinivas.
In 2014, he won the National Film Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Jolly LLB.


Shyamlal Yadav

Shyamlal Yadav is famous internationally for using RTI for journalistic purposes. He has filed more than 7000 RTI applications across the government and have done number of impact-making stories that prompted central and state governments to act upon. He has addressed the European Conference of Investigative Journalists at Brussels in 2012 and 2014. He has also addressed conferences on RTI and Investigative Journalism at in Brazil and Ukraine.
UNESCO has selected one of his stories among the 24 best investigative reports across the world. In 2010, he was awarded European Commissio's Lorenzo Natalie Journalism Prize, Asian Development Bank's Developing Asia Journalism Award, and the Ramnath Goenka Award for Excellence in Journalism (Best Investigative Reporter category).
He has also received the the Best user of RTI award in 2009. the Statesman Award for Rural Reporting in 2007. Currently he is a Senior Editor with The Indian Express. He has also worked with India Today (Hindi) and the Hindi daily Jansatta.


Simran Shaikh

Simran, a Hijra, has dedicated her professional life to human rights advocacy. She has been a pioneer in India in raising the issues of people living with HIV (PLHIV) in the context of transgender and hijra communities. She is a strong advocate for Right to Health for all. Simran has developed the capacity of community-based organizations (CBOs) and networks that work for PLHIV and gender minorities.
She has been a consultant to national and international organizations on issues of gender and sexual minorities living with HIV and intends to continue her work on health & human rights for the most marginalized communities in future. A graduate from Mumbai University, she currently works with India HIV/AIDS Alliance in New Delhi as a Programme Officer for Pehchan, a Global Fund-supported initiative strengthening community systems for men who have sex with men (MSM), transgender and hijra CBOs to improve HIV prevention outcomes in India.


Sitanshu Yasachandra

Sitanshu Yashaschandra is among contemporary Gujarati literature’s most eminent representatives. A much celebrated poet and playwright, he is also a critical theorist, translator and academic. He worked as Vice Chancellor (Saurashtra University), UGC Emeritus Professor and National Lecturer, as well as Chief Editor of the Encyclopedia of Indian Literature (Sahitya Akademi). His creative, critical and academic work has received wide critical acclaim in India and elsewhere. He has taught, as Professor and Chair of Gujarati, at the M. S. University of Baroda, from 1972, and has been a visiting Professor at the Sorbonne University (Paris), University of Pennsylvania, the Loyola Marymount University (Los Angeles), and Jadavpur University (Kolkata).
He has been invited to read internationally from his poems and plays at Paris, Belin, Frankfurt, Stuttgard, Moscow, Riga, Croetia, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seoul etc and natinally at Delhi, Kolkata, Guahati, Bangalore, Jaipur, Trivendrum, Hydrabad etc.
He has received National Sahitya Akademi Award (1987); Rashtriya Kabir Samman (Madhya Pradesh); Gangadhar Maher Samman (Orissa), National Harmony Award (New Delhi), Kavi Kusumagraj National Award (Maharashtra), 2013. Also, Gujarat Gaurav Award (2014). Ranjeetram Suvarna Chandrak (Ahmedabad) (1987) and Narmad Suvarna Chandrak (Surat) (2002).


Soniya Sirsat

Soniya Sirsat is a bilingual poet, writer and translator. Her poems and short stories have found space in journals and magazines like ‘Samakaalin Bharat Sahitya’,’ Sahitya Hetu Saagar’, ‘Doaba’,’ Katha Darpan’, ‘Goa Puri’, and many more. She has done a psychoanalytical study of Rajendra Yadav’s works. Along with editing several books, Soniya Sirsat has been the editor of Baardes, Prerna, and Vivek Kiran magazines.
Soniya Sirsat currently teaches at the Hindi Department at a college in Goa.


Subodh Sarkar

Subodh Sarkar has published 27 books of poems in Bengali, two books in English. He edited `Beyond the Brown`, an anthology of essays on Indian-American writings in English. He has participated at international readings in France, Germany, America, Taiwan, Turkey, Russia, Greece and Canada. He is the former Editor of ` Indian Literature`, Sahitya Academy’s journal. At present, he is the Editor of Bhashanagar, a literary magazine, 25 years on, to celebrate Indian literature.
He received the Sahitya Academy Award in 2013.
Sarkar currently teaches English in City College under Calcutta University.


Surabhi Sharma

Surabhi Sharma is a filmmaker. She studied anthropology in St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai, before specialising in direction at the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Pune. Her films include Jari Mari: Of Cloth and Other Stories; Aamakaar: The Turtlepeople; Jahaji Music: India in the Caribbeanand Bidesia in Bambai . She recently completed Tracing Bylanes, a rumination on the Indian city of Chandigarh; and Can we see the baby bump please?, a film on commercial surrogacy in India.
Using an ethnographic approach Surabhi’s key concern is to document cities in transition, and understand cultures in circulation. Her practice includes feature-length documentaries, video art and installation works. Surabhi is visiting faculty in film and design schools in India, and has curated programmes for festivals and organisations. She recently co-curated Sheharnama: a city/film festival held in Mumbai in January 2014. She has been part of a group of 4 independent filmmakers who have been curating weekly programmes of independent films at the FD zone, at Films Division India.
Her documentaries have been awarded at international film festivals including Film South Asia, the Kara Film Festival, the Festival of Three Continents and Eco Cinema; and screened in museums and universities in India, Europe and North America. Bidesia in Bambai was selected in the competition section at the Dubai International Film festival in 2003. Can we see the Baby Bump? was awarded a special Jury mention at the Jeevika Livelihood Film festival in 2013. She is the recipient of the Majlis Fellowship, and was awarded the Puma Catalyst Award for Bidesia in Bambai.


Surjit Patar

Surjit Patar is a renowned Punjabi language writer and poet of Punjab. His poems enjoy immense popularity with the general public and have won high acclaim from critics. Currently, he is the president of Punjab Sahit Academy, Chandigarh
Patar, who retired as Professor of Punjabi from Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana, started writing poetry in mid-sixties. Among his works of poetry are "Hawa Vich Likhe Harf" (Words written in the Air), "Birkh Arz Kare" (Thus Spake the Tree), "Hanere Vich Sulagdi Varnmala" (Words Smouldering in the Dark), "Lafzaan Di Dargah" (Shrine of Words), "Patjhar Di Pazeb" (Anklet of Autumn) and Surzameen (Music Land )
He has translated into Punjabi the three tragedies of Federico García Lorca, the play Nag Mandala of Girish Karnad, and poems of Bertolt Brecht and Pablo Neruda.
He has also adapted plays from Jean Giradoux, Euripides and Racine. He has written tele-scripts on Punjabi poets from Sheikh Farid to Shiv Kumar Batalvi. In 1993, he won the Sahitya Akademi Award for Hanere vich Sulghdi Varnmala.


Syed Shamsul Haque

Syed Shamsul Haq, poet, playwright, novelist was born on 27 December 1935 in Kurigram, a small town in north of Bangladesh. His is a major literary voice in Bangladesh. A Fellow of Bangla Academy and the Chief Advisor of Bangladesh National Council of Poetry, Syed Haq has books over two hundred including 39 volumes of Poetry, 19 Verse Plays, 8 major Novels, 9 volumes of Essays and 3 Autobiographies. His plays were performed in the USA, the UK, India, South Korea. He is married to eminent novelist Anwara Syed Haq and has two children. He is also a documentary film maker. His latest film is on the spirit and historical struggle of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibar Rahman, the Father of the Nation. He also paints as a creative hobby and has a large number of canvases.
He has won many awards and prizes for his writing, including the two highest national award of Bangladesh, namely Ekushe Padak in remembrance of the language martyrs and Swadhinota Padak, the Independence medal.


Tathagata Bhattacharya

Tathagata Bhattacharya is a senior editorial and publishing process manager who has worked in various capacities with leading Indian and international media publishing houses. He has graduated in History Hons from Presidency College (University), Calcutta and has a Masters in Sociology from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He was pursuing his M.Phil in Anthroplogy at the Centre for Historical Studies, JNU, when he decided to take a full-fledged plunge in the world of journalism. He is Group Editorial Director at World Research and Consulting Corporation, publishers of WCRC Leaders Asia, Asia’s Most Promising Brands, a few of the various titles that come out of the stable. Before this, he was the Editor of Global Editions at Network 18 Group and was the Editor-in-chief of the Los Angeles-based Blackrock Publishing LLC. He is as enthused by newsbreaks, political economy and policy analyses as he is by single malts, jazz, military aviation and socio-political unrest. He runs a small magazine and publishing house called Bhashabandhan from Kolkata which was started by his father Nabarun Bhattacharya. He is Delhi-based and is working on his first novel.


Theepachelvan

Theepachelvan is the pseudonym of Pratheepan, who has emerged as a significant voice from Sri Lanka. He is one of the important poets of Eelam, a photographer, and a journalist with newspapers and magazines on life and politics in Sri Lanka.
His poems, depicting the war-ridden life of the Tamils in Srilanka, are powerful and poignant because he grew up witnessing the horror and sorrow from close quarters. This has raised his poems from being empty rhetoric to powerful and poetic documentation of all that is going on in the Island.
Theepachelvan was born in Kilinochchi, Sri Lanka on 24 October 1983. He completed his B. A. in Tamil from Jaffna University and MA in journalism & communication from University of Madras. Theepachelvn in currently pursuing his M.Phil in journalism from the MS University in Tirunelveli, India.


Udaya Narayana Singh

Born in 1951, Udaya Narayana Singh is a poet-linguist, with four anthologies of poems plus eleven plays in Maithili (pen-name ‘Nachiketa’) and three collections of poems and six books of essays in Bangla. He was the first Pro-Vice-Chancellor in Tagore’s Visva-Bharati (2010-12) and Director of CIIL, Mysore (2000-09). He also translated six books and edited 16 other volumes with over 180 research papers. Singh taught Linguistics, Translation Studies, Comparative Literature and English at the Universities of Hyderabad, Delhi, Surat and Baroda. Singh has also lectured in Australia, Bangladesh, Caribbean Islands, China, France, Germany, Italy, Iceland, Mauritius, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, & USA, and was a Poet-invitee at the Frankfurt Book Fair (2006) and London Book Fair (2009).


Vikram Kumar Soni

Vikram Kumar Soni, who has a Master’s degree in History, is deeply interested in areas like Arts, Aesthetics, Ecology, Tourism, Language, Education, and Literature. He was awarded the Bhilai Vani Samman for the bilingual journal Bhilai Vani in 2010, at all India level. Being efficient at Radio, Television, and Dramatics, Vikram has written and performed in many regional and national level plays.
Vikram was also instrumental in preparing a dictionary of Hindi, Halbi and Engish terms for Rajiv Gandhi Shiksha Scheme. Vikram also found a new font for Halbi Languge. Vikram has translated into Hindi and Halbi many works of Children’s Literature for Chhatisgrah tourism Industry and other unofficial organizations.


Vinay Pathak

Arguably one of the finest contemporary actors in Hindi cinema,Vinay Pathak has starred in critically acclaimed films like Khosla Ka Ghosla, Bheja Fry and Johnny Gaddaar. He has also had major supporting roles in blockbusters like Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi. He attended State University of New York at Stony Brook and acted in many plays. With his outstanding performances in Khosla Ka Ghosla and Bheja Fry, he took comic timing to a new level.
Besides doing some incredibly famous comedy shows on V, Sony and ESPN-Star, he has also scripted a television show Hip Hip Hurrey, and has produced Dasvidaniya, known for his lead role of a young man confronting death with a smile.
His film Raat Gayi Baat Gayi won the Best Film Award at HBO's New York South Asian International Film Festival, 2009 and Antardwand directed by Sushil Rajpal won the 2009 National Film Award for Best Film on Social Issues. In 2009, he was nominated for the Filmfare Best Supporting Actor Award for the film Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi.