As the World Hindu Congress 2023 is set to begin from Nov 24, 2023, it is important to know all those people who will address the gathering on various topics, such as:
- Political Women
Speaker Profiles on Youth
Murali Krishna Magesan,
Coordinator, Hindu Youth Conference @World Hindu Congress 2023
Murali Krishna Magesan is a B.E. (Hons) in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. He has worked in the product development sector in New Zealand and is currently a Product Owner. He is the Coordinator of Hindu Students & Youth Network (HSYN) and President of Hindu Youth New Zealand (HYNZ). Murali is in the process of establishing a Hindu videogame studio. With a diverse skill set spanning engineering and business and his commitment to serving the Hindu community, Murali looks forward to contributing to the Hindu resurgence.
SESSION 1: Restoring a Confident Hindu Identity: Making Hindu Identity Visible, Acceptable and Respectable in Mainstream (Friday, 24 Nov: 2.30 – 3.45 pm)
President, National Hindu Students’ Forum (UK), UK
Bhavya Shah is the national President of the National Hindu Students’ Forum (UK), an organisation for Hindu university students in the UK. Founded in 1991, NHSF (UK) is a movement providing opportunities for university students to learn about Hindu Dharma and culture through activities, events, and projects. With over 47 chapters in the UK, NHSF has now started to work in Europe and wider, most recently being NHSF (Norway). Bhavya is also a Swayamsevak from London. He graduated from Queen Mary University of London studying Computer science and is working as a software engineer.
Director General, Refugee Aid Project, Bharat
Kiran Chukkapalli is a social activist, former entrepreneur, and international speaker. He founded Think Peace in 2010, a non-profit dedicated to safeguarding the human rights of marginalised Hindu communities. His work initially focused on comprehensive development in tribal Indian villages. Later, he turned his attention to Hindu refugees who had fled religious persecution in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka. Kiran’s three-month, 13,000 km motorcycle journey across 18 states raised awareness and led to the Refugee Aid Project. This initiative has provided vital support to 287,575 Hindus in areas like education, healthcare, and housing.
I Wayan Darmawan
Chairman, Kesatuan Mahasiswa Hindu Dharma Indonesia, Indonesia
I Wayan Darmawan is the Chairman of Kesatuan Mahasiswa Hindu Dharma Indonesia, one of the largest Hindu student organisations in south-east Asia. He completed his Bachelors in Physical Education from Bina Darma University and is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Human Resource Management at the National University of Jakarta. Over the last nine years, he has travelled extensively across Indonesia, actively engaging with, and contributing to the rich tapestry of traditions and cultures within the Hindu Indonesian community. His experiences and insights allow him to provide the necessary leadership to positively impact Hindus and the wider society in Indonesia.
National Hindu Students’ Forum (UK), UK
Samyak Pandey is a junior doctor in the UK. He is part of the Hinduphobia Task Force of the National Hindu Students’ Forum (UK), and a former National Public Relations Lead of the NHSF (UK). He was awarded Students’ Union President of the Year as lead for King’s College London Hindu Society, during which he was a key figure in the campaign to create the UK’s first Dharmic Prayer Room. He has also been a key part of the Varchasva Hindu Youth Leadership Programme, delivering talks on topics of Shastra, Advocacy and Hindu Unity amongst Hindu youth in the UK.
SESSION 2: Navigating Academic Kurukshetras: Strengthened Intellect, Empowered Activism (Friday, 24 Nov: 4.15 – 5.30 p.m.)
Coordinator (Bharat), Hindu Students and Youth Network, USA
Ramdas Tiwari is the Coordinator of Hindu Students and Youth Network in Bharat. He recently completed his undergraduate studies in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology at Kanpur. He has joined the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as a PhD scholar in the Department of Mechanical Sciences and Engineering. He is interested in Bharat Studies, human rights issues of Hindus, and aspires to work in the field of education and research after completing his education.
Vistarika, National Hindu Students’ Forum (UK), UK
Nikita Trivedi is currently a vistarika (full-time volunteer) for the National Hindu Students’ Forum (UK) focusing on Hindu students across the United Kingdom. Professionally, she is a qualified pharmacist graduating from the University of Portsmouth. During her time at University, she was the President of her local Hindu Society until she joined the NHSF (UK) national committee campus team. She is currently working with Hindu students across the UK to understand the current scene on university campuses for Hindu students, focusing on the presence of prayer spaces and Hindu chaplains on campus.
Deepali Kulkarni is a Hindu American writer currently based in Bharat. She serves in the contexts of Hindu human rights and Hindu practice. Most recently, she was the Director of Human Rights for the Hindu American Foundation. Deepali has an MA in Asian Religion from the University of Hawaii, an MSt in Women’s Studies from the University of Oxford, and an MPhil in Religion from Syracuse University. She has written on topics including the Hindu Bengali genocide, epistemic injustice against Hindus, and Hinduphobia.
SESSION 3: Media: Mastering the Art of Narrative Setting and Influencing Perception (Saturday, 25 Nov: 9.30 – 10.45 a.m.)
Hindu Youth Australia, Australia
Sachita Subramanian is a second year University student studying Information Systems at the University of Technology Sydney in Australia. She enjoys acting in her spare time, being involved in Sydney’s local student theatre scene. She has been involved in VHP Australia from her childhood, attending Veda Classes and Sunday afternoon Sanskrit lessons. From a young age, she always appreciated the ways in which Hindu Dharma taught her ways to navigate, approach and appreciate life. She is now a dedicated member of Hindu Youth Australia, organising and attending Hindu Youth-led events and teaching young future Hindu leaders about Hindu Dharma.
Director, Project Janani, USA
Praneeth Madhu, a Telangana-born, US-raised individual, graduated from The Ohio State University in 2021 with a degree in Mathematics and Neuroscience. Currently a second-year medical student at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Praneeth has dedicated himself to studying and promoting awareness of Hindu Dharma. Notably, he served as the president of Hindu YUVA at Ohio State and now assists the national team with operations. Taking a year off between University and medical school, Praneeth directed a documentary film titled Project Janani, aiming to highlight Hindu Dharma. The project was initiated in 2021, completed production in 2022, and is currently in post-production.
Chief Creative Officer, Prachyam Studios, Bharat
Kshitiz Rai, Chief Creative Officer at Prachyam Studios, has been instrumental in steering the company’s mission to globalise Bharatiya history, values, and wisdom. After forgoing traditional college education, with childhood friend Abhishek Singh, and under the guidance of mentor, Praveen Chaturvedi, he founded Prachyam Studios. Since its 2020 launch, Prachyam Studios has successfully blended Bharatiya ethos with global appeal, making a significant impact. Kshitiz, as CCO, shapes the company’s creative direction, infusing every endeavour with Bharatiya principles and values. Under his leadership, Prachyam has grown, becoming a distinctive platform that embodies the richness and diversity of Bharat’s cultural legacy.
Social Media Director, Hindu American Foundation, USA
Priyanka Deo Jain, Social Media Manager for Hindu American Foundation, previously served as Chief Manager at the Times Group of India, earning the Dev Rishi Narad Muni Patrakar Samman 2022 for digital journalism. As a social media influencer on X, Instagram, and You Tube, she objectively addresses news and debunks misinformation. Holding master’s degrees from Harvard, LSE, and USC, Deo is a former NCAA tennis player and captain for the University of Illinois. Invited to contribute to Prime Minister Modi’s 2019 Lok Sabha Election campaign, her digital videos, including those shared by PM Modi, resonate globally, highlighting her impactful journalism.
SESSION 4: Transforming Young Hindu Entrepreneurship and Developing Economic Leadership (Saturday, 25 Nov: 11.15 – 12.30 p.m.)
Healthtech Entrepreneur, Young Hindu Entrepreneurs Network, Bharat
Brinda Kotak, a passionate advocate for Hindu sciences, empowers Bharatiya youth through debates on scientific, historical, and cultural issues. A University of Pennsylvania graduate with dual majors, she holds degrees in Biological Basis of Behaviour and Science Tech and Society. With a master’s in health care policy and management from Carnegie Mellon University, Brinda has been a PwC Consultant, health tech entrepreneur, and licensed behavioural therapist. Proficient in Bharatiya knowledge systems, she researches Hindu frameworks for mental health. Pursuing an MTech in Heritage Science and Technology at IIT Hyderabad, Brinda actively contributes to Hindu Students and Youth Network and Young Hindu Entrepreneurs Network.
Founder, Girls Play Global, USA
Janani Shivakumar is a sophomore student at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill studying Economics, Business, and Data Science interested in the intersections of business and public policy, with a focus on sustainability, economic empowerment, and foreign affairs. She is a founder of Girls Play Global. She is extremely passionate about utilising sustainable investing strategies and technology-based solutions to address social issues to aid the growth of a more empowered society. She was a speaker at the United Nations in New York on International Day of Peace regarding sustainable future.
Vice President, Canadian Hindu Chamber of Commerce, Canada
Kushagr Sharma is an accomplished lawyer practising in Ontario, Canada, with a rich cultural heritage stemming from Himachal Pradesh, Bharat. Sharma holds the esteemed position of Vice President and founding member of the Canadian Hindu Chamber of Commerce, actively contributing to the promotion of Hindu business interests in the country. He serves on the Advisory Board of the Hindu Heritage Centre, a prominent Canadian temple. Kushagr has previously worked as an Advisor and Legislative Assistant in the Ontario Legislative Assembly, utilising his expertise in legislative affairs. Notably, he holds a specialised degree from UC Berkeley, solidifying his educational foundation.
Chief Operating Officer, EDDAVerse, Bharat
Kushaal Patel is the Chief Operating Officer for EDDAVerse which is a leading Web3 IP holder, with over 50,000 activations across 5 blockchains. He is a digital asset manager for HNIs across Bharat, Europe and the Middle East. A Swayamsevak from age 15, Kushaal is based out of Mumbai with his operations spreading across Serbia, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Dubai and Vietnam.
SESSION 5: Elevating Hindu Leadership and Advocacy: Rights, Democracy, and Empowerment (Saturday, 25 Nov: 2.30 – 3.45 p.m.)
Murali Krishna Magesan
International Coordinator, Hindu Students and Youth Network, New Zealand
Murali Krishna Magesan is a B.E. (Hons) in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. He has worked in the product development sector in New Zealand and is currently a Product Owner. He is the Coordinator of Hindu Students & Youth Network (HSYN) and President of Hindu Youth New Zealand (HYNZ). Murali is in the process of establishing a Hindu videogame studio. With a diverse skill set spanning engineering and business and his commitment to serving the Hindu community, Murali looks forward to contributing to the Hindu resurgence.
Founding Member, Hindu Democratic Coalition, USA
Sohini Sircar is Co-Founder of the Hindu Democratic Coalition, which was founded during the 2020 Elections in USA. Sohini also serves as Chairperson on the Board of Trustees of Hindu Students Council (HSC), a non-profit, promoting Hindu heritage and culture for students and young professionals. HSC has more than 50 chapters in North America and has inspired Hindu youth organisations globally. She’s also a board member of the Coalition of Hindus of North America. Sohini is pursuing an MBA at NYU Stern and has an MPH from Yale’s School of Public Health and a BSFS from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service.
Human Rights Researcher, Global Human Rights Defence (GHRD), Switzerland
Visaalakshi Sivasankar is a master’s graduate in International Relations from the Geneva School of Diplomacy with a bachelor’s degree from King’s College London, and a regional focus on South Asia. Accredited as a Mediator, she is an active member of civil society. At Global Human Rights Defence (GHRD), she works in highlighting issues of human rights in Pakistan. She also reports on current affairs as a part of the United Nations Geneva Team. Simultaneously, she works with the Global Institute for Water, Environment and Health (GIWEH) as a representative at the UN in Geneva.
Speaker Profiles on Women
Coordinator, Hindu Women Conference, World Hindu Congress 2023
Pritika Sharma is a fourth generation Hindu residing outside Bharat. Undergraduate in Applied Science and Post graduate in Public Policy. Currently working as Prevention Program Facilitator at Child & Family Focus Inc. Previous roles: Group facilitator at Inner City Women’s Group; Trainer at Shine; Health Promotion Advisor at Auckland Regional Public Health Service; Manager at North Shore Women’s Refuge; Trustee of the Asian Women & Family Trust (NZ); and Facilitator of the Ethnic Womens’ Leadership Network in New Zealand. Former joint general secretary of Hindu Council of New Zealand (VHP-New Zealand). Founding team member of Hindu Youth New Zealand and Australia.
SESSION 1: Empowering Hindu Women Scholars in Academia (Friday, 24 Nov: 2.30 – 3.45 pm)
Researcher, journalist, educator, women’s activist, USA and Trinidad & Tobago
Indrani Rampersad is a fourth generation born Person of Bharatiya Origin from Trinidad and Tobago and lives in the USA. She is an independent researcher, journalist, educator, women’s activist, and first female Hindu priest/pandita from Trinidad and Tobago. She is the founder and first president of the Hindu Women’s Organisation of Trinidad and Tobago (1987). In 2013, she received the Government of TT National Award Gold in the category of Women in Development. She completed her higher education in Bharat and has a PhD degree in Communication and Journalism (University of Pune, Bharat). She recently completed India’s first MA Hindu Studies (2021-2023) from the Banaras Hindu University.
Hospitality Entrepreneur, Bharat
Meenakshi is a hospitality entrepreneur. Founder of Ayodhya Foundation. She is an avid researcher of culture and history, publishes deep dive articles and blogs on correcting historical misconceptions. She has been encouraging the classical and regional arts of India. She is an avid history buff and perpetually researches episodes where history was faulted to manufacture faux narratives. She says “History is the mother of future and correct history is a debt we owe our future generations”.
Prof Raka Arya
Professor (Political Science), National Law Institute University, Bhopal, Bharat
Prof Raka Arya is the Professor of Political Science at National Law Institute University, Bhopal. She has her Ph.D degree from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. She has more than 23 years of teaching experience. She has published papers in books and journals. She is associated with several organisations, including the Department of Women and Child Development. She is a member of Ethical Committee on Medical research of National Institute of Research on Environmental Health. Prof Raka Arya has been appointed as a member of the 22nd Law Commission of India by the Central Government.
SESSION 2: Contributing Towards a Sustainable Economy (Friday, 24 Nov: 4.15 – 5.30 p.m.)
Dr Sujata Sheshadrinathan
Entrepreneur, Director – IT, Product & Process, Basiz Fund Services, Bharat
Dr Sujata Seshadrinathan is a founder and majority shareholder in Basiz Fund Services, a Global Leader in Fund Administration. She holds a Doctorate in Business Administration focussing on Blockchain adoption. With over 25 years of work experience and as a much respected and awarded entrepreneur, Dr Sujata has led companies that are invested into startup, Fund services, Fund Tech and Legal Tech. She is also a Professor for management courses teaching Entrepreneurship and Technology. Sujata along with her husband Aditya Sesh, runs the Sujata Sesh Foundation, which is active in the space of Education, Healthcare , Water conservation and Women Empowerment.
Entrepreneur & Leadership Trainer, Bharat
Akila Swaminathan is a leadership coach with a focus on ethical leadership working primarily with young citizens. She is a computer engineer who went on to do a MBA from a premier institute in Bharat. Post a decade in the corporate world, working across industries, she took the plunge into entreprenuership founding CoRE Inc, based out of Bengaluru. CoRE operates in the space of experiential leadership learning and also helps/mentors start-ups.
Co-Founder at Dhiraa Skilldev Foundation
Priya Subbaraman is the co-founder at Dhiraa Skilldev Foundation, which is committed to inclusive development. It aims to empower individuals with the essential skills they need to succeed in today’s ever-evolving business landscape. The program focuses on two crucial aspects: Financial Literacy and Skilling. Priya was Chief Regulatory Officer at National Stock Exchange of India Limited. She has more than 25 years of experience in Bharatiya and global financial institutions including stock exchange, investment and commercial banks and securities houses.
Workshop – Hindu Women’s Entrepreneurial Network
Chayaa Nanjappa Rajappa
Entrepreneur and Founder, Nectar Fresh & Naman, Bharat
Chayaa Nanjappa is an award winning first generation, rural social entrepreneur. She is the founder of the brand’s Nectar Fresh & Naman. Nectar Fresh is considered as a pride of the Khadi & Village Industries Commission. She has been recognised for her work for the tribal community and the rural folk with numerous national awards, including the CNBC ‘Women Entrepreneur Award’ and ‘Women Transforming India Award’ by Nithi Ayog. She has been an invited speaker at ‘Indian Science Congress’ and ’World Hindu Congress’ & has been a preferred speaker for ‘APO Japan’ in numerous countries. She has travelled to many countries to inspire Women on entrepreneurship.
Smt Nitika Sharma
Director, Innovation and Growth Advisory, KPMG New Zealand
Smt Nitika Sharma is a Director, Innovation and Growth Advisory, at KPMG New Zealand. She holds a BSc from University of South Pacific,and MBA from University of Auckland. She is the General Secretary of Hindu Council of New Zealand. Nitika has previously held various senior leadership roles with government and universities in New Zealand and United Kingdom. As a volunteer, she has led the organisation of multiple community events in New Zealand, UK and USA. Nitika is an avid traveller with a keen interest in ‘heritage tourism’.
SESSION 3: Hindu Women’s Participation in Political and Democratic Processes (Saturday, 25 Nov: 9.30 – 10.45 a.m.)
Board Chairperson, Kasikorn Bank, Thailand
Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul is a former Thai politician. She served as Minister of Tourism and Sports in the first cabinet of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha. She is the Chairperson of Toshiba Thailand Co Ltd, and Chairperson of the Board of Kasikorn Bank, one of the largest commercial banks in the country.
Advocate Monika Arora
Senior Lawyer, Supreme Court of Bharat
Advocate Monika Arora is a senior lawyer at the Supreme Court of Bharat, known for her advocacy on various fronts. She serves as the National Convenor of ‘GIA,’ a Delhi-based think tank, and is a best-selling author of books like “Delhi Riots 2020: The Untold Story”. She is an advocate for the Government of Bharat, representing armed forces, and Government ministries. Monika Arora has received scholarships, awards, and accolades. She’s been active in filing Public Interest Litigations, notably against derogatory content in a book about Hindu Dharma and in support of cow welfare. She’s a passionate speaker dedicated to addressing national issues and upholding the values of Bharat.
Dr Srilekha Reddy Palle
Political Director for the American Hindu Coalition, USA
Dr. Srilekha Reddy Palle, a Global healthcare executive, has notably led Virginia’s Durga Temple, championing unity and interfaith initiatives. Her political acumen is evident in her role as the Political Director for the American Hindu Coalition, where she is dedicated to strengthening the ties between American Hindus and the broader republican framework. Additionally, she advises on the National Committee for Religious Freedom with former Governor Sam Brownback and serves on Governor Glenn Youngkin’s advisory board. Dr. Palle’s work exemplifies her commitment to community development and strategic policy influence, underscoring her multifaceted leadership and advisory roles in religious and political spheres.
Smt Manga Anantatmula
American Hindu Politician, USA
Manga Anantatmula hails from a political family from Bharat. Manga started fight against Hinduphobia in the United States. She is the only Bharatiya Woman on the core team to overturn Affirmative Action in the United States Supreme Court. She has been very active: Confronting Pakistan Ambassador in Washington, for the minority women’s Human Rights; and “Boycott Amazon” for selling floor mats with Hindu god images. She is a Chair of the USA Federal Affairs Committee of the India USA Partnership™️. She has successfully managed large contracts for U.S. Department of Defense and the Acquisition of State of Art Technology for U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Smt Padma Kuppa
IT Professional and Hindu Politician, Michigan, USA
Padma Kuppa is an engineer from NIT Warangal, IT professional, and former State legislator from Troy, Michigan, where she built her career in the auto industry. Kuppa won a highly competitive seat in the legislature as a first time candidate with no political background in 2018. The first immigrant and only Hindu to serve in the Michigan legislature, her public service includes being on Troy Planning Commission, Hindu American Foundation, RCRC and many regional nonprofit boards, and currently is advisor to HCRC and SAAVI. Her interfaith bridge building efforts, as founder of the Troy Area Interfaith Group, are recognized by Harvard University’s Pluralism Project.
SESSION 4: Voices and Views of Hindu Women in the Media (Saturday, 25 Nov: 11.15 – 12.30 p.m.)
Dr Roopa Iyer
Actor, Producer, Director, Choreographer, Model, Screenwriter
Roopa Iyer is an award winning socially conscientious film actor, director, producer, screenwriter, dancer, choreographer, model, business executive, humanitarian, a philanthropist, and a philosopher. She was born in Karnataka and has been involved with over a dozen movies from acting to direction in the Sandalwood entertainment industry. Currently she is making a Hindi film “Neera Arya” based on Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose’s INA – 1st Women Army. Her film “Mukhaputa – The Cover Page”, about a child suffering from HIV/AIDS, has won worldwide accolades. She has won over 45 International Awards and a Gold Medal from “House of Lords” – London.
Sushri Arushi Tiwari
Regional Coordinator for Hindu YUVA, USA
Sushri Arushi Tiwari is currently pursuing a PhD in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in the USA. With her family’s involvement with Vishva Hindu Parishad and her upbringing spanning two diverse countries, Bharat, and the U.S, her world view has been profoundly influenced. Additionally, she is a Regional Coordinator for Hindu YUVA, a Hindu student organization in the U.S. that is linked with Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh. These experiences have provided her with a distinctive perspective on community engagement and underscored the crucial role of narratives in our endeavors.
IPS Officer, Bharat
Nirmal Kaur,1983 batch IPS officer, retired as DGP in Jharkhand. She was in the Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPRD) till 2016.
Nirmal Kaur is a Police Service Officer of 1983 batch from Bharat. She has spent over forty years working in Bihar and Jharkhand in various capacities and finally worked as Director General of Police. She has conducted and disseminated extensive research underlining Granth Sahib as an accessible expression of Vedantic Philosophy provided for the masses in their Bhakha or language. She is working on emphasising the basic unity of Sarna, worship of tribals of Chhota Nagpur and Sanatan way of life bringing out commonalities between the two. She writes on subjects of topical interest with an endeavour to correct the skewed perceptions created by the media. Eternal Sanatan ethos and Hindu Dharma as nothing but a philosophy of coexistence resonate through her writings.
CEO, The Alternate Media, Zambia
Gayatri Devi is a researcher, lawyer, educator & believer in difference, rather than equality of genders. She completed her Law Degree from Delhi University. She has taught In Universities in Africa. She believes Africa and Bharat are similar with respect to cultures and traditions. Through her channel The Alternate Media which has about 400,000 subscribers and a million viewership, Gayathri has been promoting pro Hindu, pro-Bharat narrative across world through her platform. She believes that the war of narratives needs more Hindu women than ever as women can present family, society, and country best.
Senior Digital Content and Communication Specialist, Bharat
Deepa Singh Rathore is a Senior Digital Content and Communication Specialist with a passion for creating engaging and impactful stories. She started her career in Times Group as a Content Curator and then moved to Sahara where she produced news and current affairs shows. She then worked at Reliance Entertainment in the Movie, Marketing and Digital Content Creation division and worked on projects like Kites and 3 idiots. She was the Lead Manager for Social Media Content Strategy for Yogi Adityanath’s Lok Sabha campaign and is currently a visiting faculty member in Mass Communication and Journalism in University of Mumbai. She is currently the Editor of Hindu Post Digital.
SESSION 5: Human Rights Law and Society (Saturday, 25 Nov: 2.30 – 3.45 p.m.)
Manager, Policy Research and Coordination, Bengaluru, Bharat
Bhumika Modh is the Manager, Policy Research and Coordination at the Association of People with Disability. She is an experienced Research Fellow with a demonstrated history of working in the Legal Services industry. She is skilled in International Law, Public Law, Public Speaking, Contract Law, and Legal Writing. She is a strong research professional with a Master of Laws focused in Economic, Social and Cultural Rights from the University of Essex and PhD from the Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Patiala. She was an Assistant Professor of Christ University and Alliance University before becoming Lok Sabha Research Fellow.
Dr Prerna Malhotra
Jt. Director of Centre of Hindu Studies, University of Delhi, Bharat
Dr. Prerna Malhotra teaches at the Department of English, University of Delhi. She is the Jt. Director of Centre of Hindu Studies, University of Delhi and, Director, Centre for Democracy, Pluralism and Human Rights. A recipient of the Dr S Radha Krishnan Memorial National Teacher Award. She has co/authored six books, including the much-acclaimed Delhi Riots 2020: The Untold Story. She is also a community outreach person, and a human rights defender working at the international level. She has been a part of many fact-finding teams formed about contemporary burning issues. She is regularly invited to panel discussions, plenary sessions, and special lectures.
Joint National Coordinator for Hindu Support Network, UK
Heena Solanki, Joint National Coordinator at Hindu Support Network (HSN), is a committed community volunteer, engaged with various organisations, including her former International Coordination role at Sewa Day. Based in London, UK, Heena plays an invaluable role at HSN, providing leadership and overseeing team expansion, training, and managing complex cases of grooming and domestic abuse. Heena has a professional background in Technology, successfully runs her own Event Management business and is an Events Director. She advocates for social causes and combines her professionalism with her role, striving for the well-being and empowerment of those in need, all while being a dedicated wife and mother of two.
Aarsha Vidya Samajam, Bharat
First woman Pracharika at Aarsha Vidya Samajam, dedicated her life to the mission of taking Hindu Dharma to the world. Returned to Hindu Dharma 10 years back through Aarsha Vidya Samajam after converting into and practicing Islam for 5 years. Authored a book in Malayalam ‘Oru Paravarthanathinte Katha’ detailing her experience of how she was brainwashed into converting into Islam and how she was able to come back to Hindu Dharma. This book is translated into English as Story of a Reversion. Previously a schoolteacher, she has been instrumental in bringing back thousands of youth back to Hindu Dharma.
SESSION 6: Hindu Vision of Womanhood (Saturday, 25 Nov: 4.15 – 5.30 p.m.)
Deepti Kataria is a dynamic and impassioned speaker based in Egypt. Her profound expertise in education positions her as a respected educator, while her role as President of the Indian Community in Egypt underscores her leadership. Deepti has presented papers and authored articles at prestigious forums. Deepti collaborates with eminent African artists to create podcasts, spotlighting the cultural wealth of Africa. Her appearances on Egyptian National TV cover a wide array of topics, from comparative education systems to broader societal issues. As the First Karywahika of the Online Gurukul Shakha of the UK, she’s dedicated to preserving traditional education.
Pramukh Sanchalika, Rashtra Sevika Samiti, Bharat
V Shanta Kumari popularly called “Shantakka” is currently the President (Akhil Bharatiya Pramukh Sanchalika) of the Hindu socio-cultural women’s organisation Rashtra Sevika Samiti. Shantakka is a full timer (Pracharika) and has been guiding as President since 2012. Rashtra Sevika Samiti is committed to the cause of empowering women, with a singular focus of uplifting society and in turn, the nation through such strong women. Shantakka says history has time and again shown us that great nations are built over foundations laid by physically, mentally and culturally strong women. Women can create and guide the power of good and make this world a better place.
Dr Asha Pillai
Chair of Hematology, Hematologic Malignancies, and Transplantation at Regeneron Therapeutics, New York, USA
Dr Asha Pillai completed BSc and advanced clinical fellowship training at Stanford University. Her NIH-funded laboratory has innovated cures in transplantation and children’s cancer immunotherapy. With a childhood commitment to serve Bharat, she was instrumental in early phases of the Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences (AIMS) Project in Kochi, Kerala and actively helped during 2004 SE Asian tsunami. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of Hindu University of America. She is an ardent student of Samskrtam, classical arts, jyotish-shastra, Vaastu-shastra, and Bhagavad Gita. She received the Presidential Leadership Award of the Association of Kerala Medical Graduates.
Vedanta teacher and Life Coach, Singapore
Avanti Kundalia is a Vedanta teacher and Life Coach based in Singapore. Through intensive research and rigorous experimentation, she has dedicated her life to validating the efficacy of Vedantic teachings in daily life. A mother of two, Avanti finds her greatest fulfillment in teaching the Bhagavad Gita to all age groups in relatable ways that guarantee dramatic inner transformations. Her insightful writings on Vedanta and beautiful translations of spiritual texts in English are well-loved by seekers of Truth. Avanti is currently co-authoring and independently writing unique commentaries on Shrimad Bhagavad Gita from the lens of a Hindu Grahasta woman.
Speaker Profiles on Economy
Dr Manoj Motwani
Coordinator, Hindu Economic Conference @World Hindu Congress 2023
Manoj is a dynamic management consultant, business coach, and corporate service provider with extensive expertise in management and compliance. Starting from humble beginnings, he progressed to senior roles including CFO and CEO of multinational corporations. He also served as an independent director in a public company and eventually founded his own businesses. Beyond his business commitments, Manoj actively engages with non-profit organizations in Hong Kong, Bharat, and Italy, fostering business, education, and culture. In 2018, Manoj was honored with the distinguished title of “Cavaliere dell’Ordine della Stella d’Italia” (“Knight of the Order of the Star of Italy”) by the President of the Italian Republic.
SESSION 1: The potential of Agriculture – Maximizing Productivity and Profitability (Friday, 24 Nov: 2.30 – 3.45 pm)
Co-founder, Shree Renuka Sugars, Bharat
Mr. Narendra Murkumbi is an Electronics Engineer from Karnatak University and MBA
from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad. He co-founded Shree Renuka Sugars Ltd., one of the largest manufacturers of sugar in the world. Also, founder and Vice-Chairman of Ravindra Energy Limited, a leading provider of Solar Energy solutions.
Mr. Murkumbi has been Independent Director – ICICI Bank Ltd, Board Member National Commodity and Derivatives Exchange Limited. President of Indian Sugar Mills Association. Moreover, has received several awards for his achievements in the field of agri-business and entrepreneurship. The Shree Renuka Development Foundation founded by him runs 3 schools with CBSE affiliation and 2 ITI Colleges in rural areas of Karnataka, India.
Dr Isriya Nitithanprapas Bunyasiri
Associate Professor, Kasetsart University, Thailand
Dr. Isriya N. Bunyasiri is currently an Associate Professor at the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Faculty of Economics, Kasetsart University, Thailand. Her field of specialization includes agricultural economics, economic development, macroeconomics, and international finance. Her recent research includes value chain, technology development, market and policy analysis with the focus on agriculture. Prior to joining KU, she had worked for National Economic and Social Development Board as a policy analyst. She graduated BA in Economics from Thammasat University, 1995; MA Applied Economics from University of Michigan, USA, 1998; and Ph.D. in Economics from Claremont Graduate University, USA, 2002.
Shri Ard Groot
Chairman of the Supervisory Board, East-West Seed Group, Thailand
Ard Groot comes from seven generations of seedsmen and East-West Seed company was founded in 1982. Today it is one of the leading tropical vegetable companies in the world. Ard joined as vice chairman of East-West Seed’s supervisory board in 2012 following a 20-year legal career. Ard leads a variety of projects in support of the executive team, building on experience gained through his legal and financial background. Ard is a Dutch national and holds an LLM degree in tax law from Leiden University. Together with a delegation of East-West Seed executives and board, Ard participated in the FAME program of the INSEAD business school.
Dr Vishal Warke
Director and Scientist at HiMedia Laboratories, Mumbai, Bharat
Dr Vishal Warke, a distinguished scientist, and Director at HiMedia Laboratories, holds an M.B.B.S. (Mumbai) and a Ph.D. in Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics (USA), with a fellowship from The Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. He works on Animal and Plant Cell Biology, Hydroponics, soil rejuvenation, and the GPS-based soil testing system “Krishitantra”. He has developed many indigenous cell biology media technologies for Biotherapeutics, Vaccines, Stem cells, and Cultivated Meat, mentors startup biotech firms, and is an expert in the field of immunology with over 20 peer-reviewed publications. He received the “BIRAC Innovator Award 2020” for his innovative research.
SESSION 2: ASEAN-Bharat Manufacturing Collaboration (Friday, 24 Nov: 4.15 – 5.30 p.m.)
Shri K Ragunathan
Director, Sathguru Management Consultants, Bharat
Shri (Ragu)nathan Kannan, is founding director of Sathguru Management Consultants, a global strategy organisation undertaking projects across all continents. Ragu is a fellow chartered accountant, a fellow management consultant and hold post graduate qualification in information technology design. He consults various SME and MNE enterprises on enterprise growth strategy, digitalisation and strategic growth. He is the Chairman of Aurobindo Pharma, one of the top 5 pharmaceutical majors from Bharat, a trustee in Trust Mutual Fund and sits in several other boards of companies, both in Bharat and abroad. Ragu has travelled extensively over last 25 years to several parts of the world and has done projects in over 50 countries.
Shri Uday Samant
Minister of Industries of Maharashtra, Bharat
Shri Uday Samant is the Minister of Industries of Maharashtra, and a leader of Shiv Sena from Maharashtra. He is Cabinet Minister of Ministry of Industries (Maharashtra). He is current Member of Legislative Assembly from Ratnagiri. He has been elected to Vidhan Sabha for four consecutive terms in 2004, 2009, 2014 and 2019.
Shri Isara Vongkusolkit
Honorary Chairman of Mitr Phol Group, Thailand
Shri Isara Vongkusolkit is Honorary Chairman of Mitr Phol Group, The Thai Chamber of Commerce, and Board of Trade of Thailand. A graduate of Management from North Carolina University, USA, was awarded Honorary Doctorate Degrees from Khon Kaen University, Rajamangala University of Technology Isan, Kasetsart University, Nakhon Phanom University, Prince of Songkla University, and the Thai Chamber of Commerce University. He has been accredited with the Person of the year award by Right Livelihood Foundation and a Masterclass Entrepreneur of The Year for Global Leadership. Mr. Isara is decorated with various Royal Decorations such as Knight Grand Cross by the Crown of Thailand and Commander & Officer of the Star of Italy.
Shri Sanan Angubolkul
Thai Chamber of Commerce
SESSION 3: Opportunities in Funding and Strategies for Fundraising (Saturday, 25 Nov: 9.30 – 10.45 a.m.)
Shri Ashish Chauhan
MD & CEO of the National Stock Exchange of Bharat
Ashish Chauhan, the MD & CEO of the National Stock Exchange of Bharat and Chancellor of the University of Allahabad, is a renowned technocrat hailing from IIT Bombay and IIM Calcutta. Since 1993, he has actively contributed to the automation of the stock market in Bharat, playing a key role in establishing screen-based trading, satellite telecom, Nifty index, and derivatives trading. Regarded as the pioneer of modern financial derivatives in Bharat, he successfully facilitated the transition of SGX NIFTY to GIFT NIFTY within a year of his tenure, aligned with the vision of the Hon’ble PM of Bharat. He has co-authored ‘BSE: The Temple of Wealth Creation’ and penned ‘Sthithpragya: The Process of Maintaining an Equilibrium,’ elucidating his remarkable journey.
Shri Subhash Thakrar
Former Chairman, London Chamber of Commerce, UK
Shri Subhash V Thakrar is a well-regarded and accomplished business and professional leader in the City of London. He is the former Chairman of London Chamber of Commerce and Founder and past Chairman of Asian Business Association. Subhash served as a Commissioner to the UK Government’s Department of International Development. He has led trade missions and has been part of UK prime ministerial international missions. Currently, he is a Board member of a portfolio of UK and International companies and charitable organisations. He founded Charity Clarity in UK and is a chartered accountant and Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. Subhash is with World Hindu Economic Forum since its inception and is the Vice President of the UK Chapter.
Shri Narayanan Sadanandan
Advisor, Capital Markets and Independent Director, Bharat
Shri Narayanan Sadanandan an experienced banker, including corporate, retail/personal banking, Investment Banking and Fund Management. Currently, he serves as independent Director of SBI and SBI Capital Markets Ltd., following his tenure as the MD & CEO of SBI Pension Funds, the largest pension fund manager in the country. His illustrious career includes leading the MSME vertical at SBI as Chief General Manager at Corporate Centre, Mumbai. With diverse assignments, he has overseen various roles, including leading the Financial Institutions Group under the International Banking Group and serving as the Chief Executive Officer of the Frankfurt branch of State Bank of Bharat.
Smt Sangeeta Shankaran Sumesh
Business Coach, Author, Independent Director, Bharat
Smt Sangeeta is a Chief Financial Officer turned Business & Leadership Coach contributing by maximizing potential, performance, and profits. An Independent Director on Corporate Boards, Sangeeta is on a mission to enable, empower and elevate businesses with a purpose to serve corporate leaders and teams. She brings along rich corporate experience of 25 years with multinationals. Sangeeta is a Chartered Accountant, Management Accountant & completed executive education from Harvard Business School, a credentialed Coach from ICF(PCC), TEDx & Global Professional Speaker and Bestselling Author of “What The Finance”, “Get High” & “Where’s The Moolah?”
SESSION 4: Healthcare Innovation: Med Tech and Medical Tourism (Saturday, 25 Nov: 11.15 – 12.30 p.m.)
Dr Ajay Murdia
Chairman/Founder, Indira IVF Group, Bharat
Dr. Ajay Murdia, Chairman of Indira IVF, is a pioneering entrepreneur in Bharat’s infertility and IVF sector. With almost four decades of experience, he challenged infertility beliefs with Lancet research in 1978. In 1988, he founded Bharat’s largest fertility clinic chain. His campaign “Nisantanta Bharat Chodo” organized 2,365 free consultation camps across 25 states, dispelling myths and reducing stigma. Today, Indira IVF has over 116 centers, contributing to 1,25,000 successful pregnancies. Dr Murdia addressed the manpower shortage by establishing the Indira Fertility Academy, training over 350 doctors and 200 embryologists. International centers are set to open in Nepal, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka in FY24.
Shri Vishwaprasad Alva
Founder and MD, Skanray Technologies, Bharat
Vishwaprasad Alva is the Founder and Managing Director of Skanray Technologies and Skan-X Radiology Devices which in just a decade has grown from a 5 member start up at Mysore to a 800+ professionals, 50+ CE/ FDA certified products with 100,000+ installations across 80 countries. It is the fastest growing and largest Bharatiya medical technologies research and development, and manufacturing company in Bharat. With a master’s in industrial Electronics and heading R & D and business units in MNCs across the Globe, Mr Alva has been a member and headed several Policy committees of the state and central Government, industry bodies, FICCI, CII, GOI, GOK and the academia. He has won several awards including recipient of highest export award for 4 consecutive years, (FICCI, MSME, GOK).
Dr Upendra Mahato
Chairman, Nepal Mediciti Hospital, Nepal
Born into a farming family, Dr Upendra Mahato embarked on a remarkable journey to become one of Nepal’s wealthiest individuals. Moving to Russia on a scholarship, he initially sustained himself by trading electronic goods and jeans. After earning a PhD, Dr Mahato founded the Syntez Pvt Ltd crude oil refinery in Belarus. He ventured into diverse sectors, including television manufacturing, real estate and construction, and heavy equipment plant, telecommunications, and hydropower. His contributions span various sectors, including health, banking, education, media, and communication. In 2017, Dr Mahato established Nepal Mediciti, a state-of-the-art hospital in Kathmandu. He founded the Non-Resident Nepali Association to represent and support Nepalis living worldwide and while contributing to the country’s development.
CEO, Jiva Ayurveda, Bharat
Shri Madhusudan Chauhan is a visionary leader and a passionate advocate of Ayurveda, the ancient Hindu system of medicine. He is the co-founder and director of Jiva, a global organization that offers personalized and holistic Ayurvedic treatments to people in more than 35 countries. He has pioneered the use of technology in Ayurveda, such as telemedicine, big data analytics, digital health management, and machine learning. He has also authored several research papers and books on Ayurveda and its applications. Madhusudan’s mission is to make Ayurveda accessible, affordable, and effective for everyone. He has won awards including Achievers Award 2022, and BW Wellbeing 40U40 2023.
SESSION 5: Emerging Frontiers: Futuristic Technology and Innovative Startups
(Saturday, 25 Nov: 2.30 – 3.45 p.m.)
Padma Shri T.V. Mohandas Pai
Chairman, 3one4 Capital; Co-Founder & Chairman, Aarin Capital, Bharat
Shri Mohandas Pai is a veteran in finance, accounting, IT, HR, education, technology, and other fields. He is the Chairman of Aarin Capital, a Board Member of Havells India and IPE, a Governing Council Member of NIIF, a CAFRAL Council Member, and a SEBI Committee Chairman. He received the Padma Shri and the Karnataka Rajyotsava awards. He was the CFO of Infosys, a SIDBI and India Fund of Funds Investor, a SEBI and NSE Board Member, an IFRS Trustee, a FICCI HE and Skills Committee Chairman, an AIMA President, and an Akshaya Patra Founder-Trustee. He has degrees in commerce, law, and accounting. He lives in Bangalore.
Shri Rajesh Sehgal
Angel Investor & Managing Partner, Equanimity Investments
Rajesh, a seasoned investor with 2 decades+ of experience managing early-stage, private equity, and public equity funds, has been deeply engaged in the Indian startup ecosystem since 2007. He’s invested in 25+ startups. A graduate of Wharton and XLRI, specializing in finance and marketing, Rajesh holds a CFA charter and a post-graduate diploma in Securities Law. His career began at SBI Capital Markets in 1996, followed by a 17-year tenure in Franklin Templeton’s Emerging Markets Group, working alongside Dr. Mark Mobius. Rajesh plays pivotal roles in professional organizations, serving as a Board Member of the CFA Society India, the Mumbai chapter of TiE (The Indus Entrepreneur), and a Founding Chair of the India chapter of CRUF.
Shri Suresh Jayaraju
Venture Builder, Entrepreneur, and Investor
Shri Suresh Jayaraju is a venture builder, entrepreneur, and investor with a track record of developing and scaling internet and mobile products for over 20 years. He led NASSCOM 10000 Startups, a program that supported over 100 tech startups in Bharat. He is the founder and CEO of Innovopod, an innovation platform that helps startups access global markets, funding, and growth. He was also part of the founding team of Android at Google, the world’s largest mobile computing platform. He has worked with several global brands such as Google, Airtel, Samsung, and the Tata Group.
Dr Gunjan Bhardwaj
Founder & CEO Partex NV
Dr Gunjan Bhardwaj is the Founder and CEO of Partex NV: World’s largest AI powered Drug Assets Manager – Solving the inefficiency problem in drug discovery and development using Big Data and Artificial Intelligence. He is the founder of Innoplexus AG: an AI champion in the life science Industry. He is an Adjunct professor at Pforzheim University, Germany. Graduate of IIT Bombay, MIT, Pforzheim University and European Business School. He has over 18 patents related to AI and Blockchain. Published 2 books in Branding and Drug Discovery and several publications in Harvard Business Review, and other journals. He won many awards. Excellent Leader with an Immigration Background Award by City of Frankfurt, Germany.
SESSION 6: Planned Network Session (Saturday, 25 Nov: 4.15 – 5.30 p.m.)
Shri Srinivas Chidumalla
IT Head, Global Agrochemical Company, Bharat
Shri Srinivas Chidumalla is heading the Country IT in one of the large Global Agrochemical companies. He was the Chief Operating Officer of World Hindu Economic Forum. He also started offshore delivery centre in Bharat for one of the largest healthcare staffing companies in USA. He was President and managed all operation of IT division in Bharat. His expertise is in Information Technology, Strategy and provides consulting and advice to large enterprises. He is an alumnus of MIT Sloan School of Management.
Shri Shailesh Trivedi
CEO & Managing Director, IT Mantra TechIntellect Pvt Ltd, Bharat
Shri Shailesh Trivedi, CEO & Managing Director of IT Mantra TechIntellect Pvt. Ltd, is a Postgraduate in Marketing Management from Mumbai University, with 33 years of experience in Office Automation and the IT industry. He is also a qualified Yogacharya with M.A in Yogashastra. He was actively involved in front line marketing of MNC majors – Compaq, Hewlett Packard and IBM. His vast experience includes working with Networking major Zenith Computers and Compaq distributor Business Link Automation. He is also Joint Secretary at Hindu Economic Forum, Mumbai chapter and was involved in organising WHEF2019 @ Mumbai that saw participation of more than 800 delegates from all over the world.
Speaker Profiles on Politics
Hon. Chief Minister, Uttar Pradesh, Bharat
Mahant Yogi Adityanath is the Peetadhipati of Gorakhnath Math. He is the longest serving Chief Minister of the state of Uttar Pradesh, Bharat’s most populous state. He has been a five-time elected Parliamentarian (from 1998 to 2017) Throughout his political career, he has been a vocal advocate for Hindutva and worked in defence of the Hindu community. He has actively worked on initiatives aimed at promoting development, infrastructure, and law and order in Uttar Pradesh.
Introductory Remarks (Friday, 24 Nov: 2.00 – 2.30 pm)
Coordinator, Hindu Political Conference, World Hindu Congress 2023
Rashmi Samant is a young leader who scripted history as the first female Bharatiya President of the University of Oxford Students’ Union. She’s a renowned national TV panellist, occasional columnist, author & vocal advocate for the human rights of marginalised Hindus. Her impactful work involves collaborations with media, think tanks, governments, and her nonprofit foundation, ATMAH. Samant’s notable contributions include presenting a comprehensive Human Rights Report on majority-driven violence in the British Parliament’s House of Commons. Her debut book, “A Hindu in Oxford,” remarkably achieved bestseller status within a mere 12 hours of its announcement.
SESSION 1: Hindu Political Identity: Challenging Stereotypes (Friday, 24 Nov: 2.30 – 3.45 pm)
Chairperson: Salvatore Babones
Salvatore Babones is an associate professor at the University of Sydney and the executive director of the Indian Century Roundtable, a think tank dedicated to providing objective, fact-based research on Bharat and its liberal democratic institutions. Prof. Babones is a quantitative comparative sociologist whose current research focuses on the political sociology of democracy. He earned his MS (statistics) and PhD (sociology) from the Johns Hopkins University. His 2018 book The New Authoritarianism was named among the year’s ‘Best on Politics’ by the Wall Street Journal. Prof. Babones is currently researching a book on Bharatiya democracy.
Member of Parliament for Akershus – Kingdom of Norway
Himanshu Gulati, a Norwegian Member of Parliament, who notably became Deputy Minister of Justice at the age of 25 and has served as a Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office. Additionally, he has also served as a Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Culture. Elected to Parliament in 2017 and re-elected in 2021. Gulati has visited 170+ countries, participated in the US State Department’s IVLP program, and completed the Executive Leaders Program at the Norwegian Defence University College. In 2019 Gulati was awarded the Indian diaspora award by the Bharatiya President and Prime Minister.
Member of city Parliament of Frankfurt, Germany
Rahul Kumar is a politician of Bharatiya origin who was raised in Germany. He is a member of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD). In 2016, Kumar was elected as a council member for the city of Kelsterbach.Since March 2021, he has been the first individual of Bharatiya descent to win a seat in the Frankfurt Parliament (Römer), representing the international city of Frankfurt am Main. Rahul Kumar is an entrepreneur with ownership of several healthcare companies across Hessen. He is renowned throughout Germany for his initiatives in organising Hindu cultural events, ranging from Diwali celebrations to large-scale musical events like “Sounds of Rainbow Germany.”
SESSION 2: Positioning Hindus in the global political sphere (Friday, 24 Nov: 4.15 – 5.30 pm)
Chairperson: Chandra Arya
Member of Parliament, Canada
Chandra Arya has been a Canadian Member of Parliament since 2015. His motion in the Canadian parliament to proclaim November as the national Hindu Heritage Month across Canada was unanimously supported. MP Arya made a statement in Canadian parliament on Swastika to distinguish it from the Nazi symbol of hatred called Hakenkreuz or Hooked Cross. He made history by making a statement in Kannada in the parliament – first in any parliament outside Bharat. MP Arya has a bachelor’s degree in engineering and a master’s degree in business administration – both from Bharat. He was an executive in a defence technology company before entering politics.
Multicultural Affairs Adviser to the Leader of the Liberal Party of Australia
Karthik Arasu is a prominent figure in both the political and business landscapes of Australia. Arasu made history in 2016 when he became the first Bharat-born candidate to run for the federal senate elections from Victoria, Australia. While his bid was not successful, his campaign marked a significant milestone for the Bharatiya community in Australia, demonstrating the growing influence and integration of the diaspora. Currently Karthik is the Multicultural Affairs Adviser to the Leader of the Opposition the Hon Peter Dutton MP and Shadow Minister for Community Safety, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs the Hon Jason Wood MP.
Dr Pararajasingam Nanthakumar
Founder & General Secretary – All Ceylon Saiva Maha Sabai
He has worked as medical officer in the public health sector since 2011. His medical office won the provincial and national award for maternal and child health, community strengthening, empowerment of mothers and tobacco prevention activities under his leadership. His organization engages in spiritual and humanitarian work among Sri Lankan Hindus which includes being a strong voice for Sri Lankan Hindus, helping war affected Tamil society in the North & East Province with education.
SESSION 3: Maximising Hindu Political Impact (Saturday, 9.30 – 10.45 am)
Soodesh Satkam Callichurn
Minister of Labour, Human Resource Development and Training, Mauritius
Hon. Soodesh Satkam CALLICHURN has been an elected member of the Parliament of the Republic of Mauritius since 11th December 2014. He was formerly a magistrate, after having practised as barrister and been an assessor at the Industry Property Tribunal and the Environment Appeal Tribunal. Since taking office at the Ministry of Labour, Human Resource Development & Training, he has been instrumental in bringing major reforms, like the introduction of the Minimum wage, which have benefited immensely the working population. From February 2021 to August 2023, he was given an additional portfolio when he was nominated as Minister of Commerce and Consumer Protection.
Dr. Swarup Ranjan Mishra
Member of Parliament, Kenya
Swarup Ranjan Mishra first went to Kenya in 1997 as a young, specialized gynaecologist and obstetrician having gained a wide range of experience in both Asia and Europe and set up the Mediheal Group of Hospitals which has dramatically transformed Kenya’s healthcare landscape making it a leading destination for medical tourism in the wider African continent. In 2016, Dr. Mishra made his foray into Kenyan politics and achieved a remarkable victory, winning 92.5% of the vote share in the Kesses Constituency, a region predominantly inhabited by native ethnic groups, despite his Bharatiya origin.
SESSION 4: Left, Right or Centre? – The Global Hindu Political Space (Saturday, 11.15 – 12.30 pm)
Chairperson: K. Annamalai
President – Tamil Nadu BJP, Bharat
K. Annamalai, is an IIM Lucknow graduate who began his career with the Indian Police Services (IPS) with the Karnataka Cadre serving in different capacities where his integrity & straightforward approach to his duties earned him the popular moniker of “Singham” of Karnataka. After nearly a decade with the IPS, Annamalai resigned from his post to serve the people of his home state, Tamil Nadu and entered politics. The following year he joined the Bharatiya Janata Party and in 2021, he assumed the role of the party’s president for Tamil Nadu. Annamalai has taken a strong stance against the anti-Hindu activities of the ruling party in Tamil Nadu.
Niraj J. Antani
Senator, Ohio State Senate, USA
State Senator Niraj J. Antani, the youngest currently serving member in Ohio’s Senate, is in his first term after previously being elected to the Ohio House at age 23. As the first Hindu and Bharatiya American State Senator in Ohio, he’s also the nation’s youngest Hindu and Bharatiya elected official. In addition to serving his state, Senator Antani actively provides a voice for the Hindu community in the USA, condemning Hinduphobia, anti-Hindu bigotry, and the Seattle City Council’s anti-Hindu ordinance. He played a pivotal role in officially recognizing the genocide of Kashmiri Hindus.
Swedish Ambassador to Qatar
H.E. Ambassador Gautam Bhattacharyya serves, since September 2022, as the Ambassador of Sweden to The State of Qatar. Ambassador Bhattacharyya joined the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs in 2000. His career includes a posting in Santiago de Chile and two separate postings at the Swedish Embassy in New Delhi, most recently as Deputy Head of Mission, 2016-2022. At the Ministry for Foreign Affairs in Stockholm, Ambassador Bhattacharyya has served in various roles, including at the departments for Asia and Oceania, International Trade as well as Human Resources.
Session 5: Synergising Hindu Political Ecosystem
Dr. Amit Desai
Chairman/Co-founder United States-India Relationship Council , USA
Dr Amit Desai DDS, one of the founding board of directors of the United States-India Relationship Council (USIRC) is extremely proud and honoured to serve as the chairman, to work towards establishing a formidable and enduring US-Bharat relationship. He has previously worked with various US law makers especially Rep. Ed Royce, who was Chairman of the House Foreign Relations Committee. He is a graduate of USC, School of Dentistry, class of 1994, and has been practising dentistry ever since. Dr. Desai appreciates the significance of a strong and resilient US-Bharat Relationship.
Governor – East Province of Sri Lanka
Senthil Thondaman, the youngest-ever Governor & Chief Minister in Sri Lanka, also serves as the President of the Ceylon Workers Congress, the nation’s largest trade union. Notably, he’s the first person of Bharatiya origin to hold the esteemed Governor position in Sri Lanka, championing social and economic development, particularly for tea and rubber plantation workers. His leadership promotes inclusivity, unity, and progress in Sri Lanka. Hon. Thondaman’s outstanding contributions have been recognized in the World Book of Records, further solidifying his legacy in social services and advocacy.
Speakers Profile on Hindu Organisations, Temples and Associations Forum (HOTA Forum)
Prof Guna Magesan
Coordinator, Hindu Organizations Conference, World Hindu Congress 2023
After retiring as the Vice Chancellor of a Private University in Gujarat, Prof Guna Magesan helped promoting Manushyaa Blossom (a startup Siddha Pharmaceutical company). He is currently the Director of Osatti Investments Limited which runs two early childcare centres in New Zealand. He has been a volunteer for World Hindu Congress since its inception. In 2014, he was the CEO of World Hindu Economic Forum. Previously, he was a Professor in Fiji National University. Prior to that, he was a Senior Scientist with New Zealand Govt. His work on Hindu-Maori relations is well recognized. He is the President, Vishva Hindu Parishad of New Zealand.
SESSION 1: Liberate Hindu Temples and Lands from Government and Church Control, and Encroachment (Friday, 24 Nov: 2.30 – 3.45 pm)
Shri A G Ponn Manickavel, IPS
Retired Inspector General of Police, Bharat
Shri A.G. Ponn Manickavel is a retired IPS officer who worked as Inspector General of Police of Idol Wing of Tamil Nadu Police. On the day of retirement, the Madras High Court appointed him as a special officer for a period of one year to probe and complete idol theft cases in Tamil Nadu. He has reported many irregularities involved in the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department and brought hundreds of valuable smuggled idols into Bharat. He has involved in various investigations including misappropriation in the making of a Panchaloha idol of the Palani Dhandayuthapani temple, idols burglary at Suthamalli Varadaraja Perumal temple and global idol-smuggling network.
Advocate Vishnu Shankar Jain
Supreme Court lawyer, Bharat
Adv Vishnu Shankar Jain is a Supreme Court lawyer. He is also a spokesman for the Hindu Justice Front. He has been fighting on many disputed cases including Gyanvapi, Mathura’s Krishna Janmabhoomi-Shahi Idgah case, and the Qutub Minar complex dispute. He began his practice in the case of Sri Rama Janmabhumi in Ayodhya, challenging the 2010 verdict of the High Court of Allahabad. His “mission” is to challenge the legitimacy of the disputed mosques because he believes that many Islamic houses of worship were built by “demolishing” Hindu temples.
Shri Rangarajan Narasimhan
Hindu Activist, Bharat
Shri Rangarajan Narasimhan has dedicated his life for the protection of the fundamental rights of Hindu Dharma, its temples and worshippers. He has filed over 200 cases before Madras High Court in an effort to protect and preserve Hindu Temples. He fights his case on his own as party in person and is highly regarded by the Judges of Madras High Court. He was instrumental in getting a landmark judgment from MHC, which resulted in driving the Government of Tamilnadu to appoint Trustees in temples which they didn’t since independence. Runs a YouTube channel @OurTemples where he shares his legal experiences to motivate others.
SESSION 2: Upholding Hindu Values and Samskara (Friday, 24 Nov: 4.15 – 5.30 p.m.)
Shri Madhu Pandit Dasa
President, ISKCON Bangalore and Chairman, Akshaya Patra Foundation
Shri Madhu Pandit Dasa is a highly esteemed spiritual leader and humanitarian with over four decades of dedicated service to society. He is a distinguished alumnus of the prestigious IIT-Bombay. His impactful initiatives have improved the lives of millions, ranging from remarkable temples and cultural complexes, showcasing Bharat’s rich heritage, to promoting Hindu Dharma and Bharatiya Samskriti globally. He’s renowned for founding the Akshaya Patra feeding program, which has served an astounding 4 billion meals, benefiting children and communities both in Bharat and abroad. His remarkable contributions have earned him prestigious awards, including the Padma Shri, Gandhi Peace Prize, Nikkei Asia Award, and BBC Global Food Champion Award, recognizing his transformative work.
Yogacharya K. R. Manoj
Founder and Director, Aarsha Vidya Samajam
Yogacharya K R Manoj is the Founder & Director of Aarsha Vidya Samajam (AVS), a spiritual educational centre in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, he established AVS in 1999 for the systematic and scientific study, practice, promotion, teaching, and protection of Hindu Dharma. In the last 24+ years, AVS under his leadership has been able to revert to Hindu Dharma more than 7000 people, from the clutches of religious conversions. This de-brainwashing system based on a systematic syllabus is the hallmark of AVS. He was honoured with the Karma Ratna Puraskar by the Atmiya Sabha of the Hindu Parliament in 2019, and the 2023 Sri Aurobindo Samman.
Dr. Ashu Goyal
International Working President, Geeta Pariwar
Dr. Ashu Goyal is the Program Director of the LearnGeeta Program, an entrepreneur, and philanthropist. He conducts workshops and seminars promoting Hindu Dharma values in Bharat and abroad. Under his leadership, the program has reached 173 countries, with 700,000 sadhaks and 8,000 volunteers. Inspired by Swami Govind Dev Giri Ji Maharaj, he strives to promote Bharatiya heritage for a harmonious world. Dr. Goyal’s dedication to Hindu Dharma makes him a global visionary and catalyst for positive change.
Shri Yogendra Giri
Volunteer of All World Gayatri Parivar, Shantikunj Haridwar, Bharat
SESSION 3: Hindu Organisation: Reaching the Unreached Areas (Saturday, 25 Nov: 9.30 – 10.45 a.m.)
Shri Saumitra Gokhale
Global Coordinator for the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh, USA
Shri Saumitra Gokhale is the Global Coordinator for the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh, a movement that promotes practicing of Hindu values for the well-being of humanity. After getting a master’s degree in engineering in 1995, he became a RSS pracharak in Bharat. Later he moved on to work with the HSS. Based in the United States, he travels worldwide for the work of Hindu society and humanity. Saumitra is on the advisory board of Sewa International, a Hindu faith-based humanitarian nonprofit and, International Center for Cultural Studies, an organization that facilitates the revitalization of diverse ancient traditions and cultures of the world.
Bhakti Vijnana Goswami
Guru and leader in the ISKCON movement, Russia
Bhakti Vijnana Goswami is a Hindu sannyasi, Guru and leader in the ISKCON movement. He has been practicing and preaching Bhakti Yoga since the 1980s. He has been leader of ISKCON communities in Russia and other former Soviet union countries for over two decades. He annually travels to Bharat and several other countries introducing people to the science of Bhakti Yoga. Before joining the monastic order, Bhakti Vijnana Goswami was a chemical sciences scholar, with a PhD in molecular biology. Bhakti Vijnana Goswami has written books in Russian on the Bhagavad Gita, spiritual transformation, the structure and philosophy of religious systems, and the healing nature of prayer.
Srivas Das Vanacari (Sylvester Bezegr)
Director of Bhakti Vedanta Academy for Culture and Education West Africa, Ghana
Srivas Das joined ISKCON in 1981. Initiated in 1983 by HH Bhakti Tirtha Swami Maharaja. Graduated from Mayapur Institute for Higher Education and GBC College for Leadership Development Mumbai. Obtained Bhakti Sastri Degree in Vedic Philosophy, Bhaktivaibhava Degree Bhagavata Purana 2007 – 13. Current portfolios in ISKCON: Teaches Sastric courses in Mayapur and Vrindavan Institutes for Higher Education, Bhakti Vedanta Academy for Culture and Education, Zonal Supervisor for West Africa, Member GBC Deputies, Member Team for the Assessment of Sannyasa Candidates TASC, Executive Member Sustainable Vaishnava Community Development, Global Duty Officer, Director of Bhakti Vedanta Academy for Culture and Education West Africa and initiating spiritual master.
Bhakti Raksaka Svami
Fundación Bhagavata Dharma, South America
BR Svami had his first encounter with Hindu Dharma at the age of 18 upon reading the Bhagavad Gita as it is by AC Bhaktivedanta Svami Prabhupada. He has since dedicated his life to hearing, studying, and sharing the teachings of his spiritual preceptors. He continues to do so through travels between Bharat and various countries in Europe and Latin America, bringing together people from all walks of life to realize shared ideals of service and universal love. He also offers services as editor, researcher, and speaker along with spiritual accompaniment to students in this same tradition.
SESSION 4: Human Rights Violation of Hindus Around the World (Saturday, 25 Nov: 11.15 – 12.30 p.m.)
Shri Sradhanand Sital
Chairperson, Global Human Rights Defence, The Netherlands
Shri Sradhanand Sital is the Chairperson of Global Human Rights Defence (GHRD) based in Netherlands, and he leads a team of over 81 full-time staff and trainees in The Hague and worldwide. GHRD is a globally recognized organization, holding United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) status, passionately committed to advancing human rights with a focus on minority rights. GHRD’s mission centres on addressing human rights violations, especially in vulnerable minority communities. GHRD actively lobbies at the European Union (EU) and the United Nations (UN) to create positive change.
Advocate Shashwat Parihar
Advocate and Registered Patent Agent, Bharat
Shashwat Parihar is a practicing advocate and a registered patent agent. He holds Law degree from the IIT Kharagpur. During his student years, he actively participated in sewa initiatives and other nationalist activities. In his professional capacity, he diligently represents clients before Bharat’s Hon’ble Supreme Court and High Courts, Company Law Tribunal, and Intellectual Property Offices. Additionally, as a dedicated trustee member of the Centre for Democracy, Pluralism, and Human Rights (CDPHR), Shashwat passionately works to protect Hindu voices and rights, especially in countries where Hindus are a minority, like Pakistan and Bangladesh.
Faqeer Shewa Ram Kachhi
Chairman and Founder, Pakistan Darawar ittehad, Pakistan
Shewa Kachhi is the Chairman and Founder of the minority rights organization Pakistan Darawar ittehad, a prominent organization which is working for minorities in Sindh Pakistan fighting for equail rights of religious minorities. The organisation is working against the injustice of kidnapping of minor girls from the minority Hindu community in Sindh, marriages after conversion of religion and for the rights of the minority community. Their peaceful struggle is that they should be considered as equal citizens of Pakistan and they wanted to get legitimate rights.
Shri Narad M. Adhikari
PRO – Global Bhutanese Hindu Organization, USA
Narad Adhikari is a respected human rights and political activist hailing from Bhutan. He has been a vocal advocate for the repatriation of Bhutanese refugees to their home state with equality, freedom, safety, and dignity. Despite multiple unsuccessful attempts with the governments of Nepal and India, Narad and around one lakh other Bhutanese refugee lost hope for repatriation. As a result, Narad made the decision to resettle in the United States, where he is now a citizen residing in Pennsylvania with his family.
Shri Aru Thirumurugan
President Sivapoomi Trust & Vice President, All Ceylon Hindu Congress, Sri Lanka
As a young man Shri Aru Thirumurugan had to go through unimaginable physical suffering during the war. However, he never blamed anyone for what happened to him. During his brief stay in Bharat while taking medical treatment, he met his Guru, the Late Sri Thirucy Swamigal. He has since given hundreds of lectures in temples in Sri Lanka and around the world. From the gifts that he received from his visits and discourses in the temples of London, Sri Aru Thirumurugan was able to build an eye operation theatre for the Jaffna hospital. In the last decade his service activities in Jaffna have flourished with the building and running of the Sivapoomi School for the Disabled and the Elderly Home among his many other charitable contributions.
SESSION 5: Encouraging Hindu Activism (Saturday, 25 Nov: 2.30 – 3.45 p.m.)
Prof. Prakasarao Velagapudi
President, Global Hindu Heritage Foundation, USA
Prof. Prakasarao Velagapudi has worked 36 years in academics in USA, served as co-founder and chairman of Hindu Temple Society of Mississippi 1984-1991; served as chairman of Datta Yoga Centre USA from 1993 – 2022; Co-founder and president of Global Hindu Heritage Foundation; organizing five grass roots level activities to ensure the survival of Hindu Dharma in Bharat – Ghar Wapasi with 26 employees, started 210 Bala Samskar Kendras in villages, renovated more than 25 Grama Devatas, hundreds of temples were Pooja kits, and employing Priest to open closed Temples. Obtained government order to demolish illegally constructed churches in Tirupati.
Adv. Ashwini Upadhyay
Lawyer, Supreme Court of Bharat
Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay is a politician and lawyer currently practicing lawyer at the Supreme Court of Bharat. He has filed more than 125 PILs in Supreme Court and 25 PILs in High Court to secure gender justice, gender equality, liberty, fraternity, unity, and national integration. He has challenged the constitutional validity of many Laws like Place of Worship Act 1991, Minority Commission Act 1992, Wakf Act 1995, and all the thirty-five Laws enacted to control our Mutts and Temples. The Supreme Court has ordered to establish Special MLA-MP Court in every district to decide the cases of MLAs and MPs within year.
Shri Pritesh Patel
Business Change Consultant, London, United Kingdom
Shri Pritesh Patel is a Business Change consultant from London. He is a second-generation British Hindu who’s family arrived to the UK from Navsari (Gujarat) and Durban (South Africa). He is a volunteer for International Professors Project (IPP). He is the co-Founder of British Hindus: Lead entirely by young volunteers, this platform aims to re-energise the narrative of Hindus and Hindu Dharma in Britain and wider diaspora. He is also the secretariat volunteer for the All Party Parliamentary Group for British Hindus: body that seeks to improve political representation of issues impacting Hindus in the United Kingdom.
Shri B. Ramakrishna Gowthaman
Founder, Vedic Science Research Centre and Promoter of Shree TV, Bharat
Ramakrishna Gowthaman is a multi-faceted personality working for Hindu empowerment with focus on strategic studies, social & community research, and media. He is the founder of Vedic Science Research centre and promoter of Shree TV. He produced several documentaries and research papers that includes Jihadhi terror, left wing extremism, etc., His success stories include restoration of traditional Tamil New year which was fraudulently changed by Tamil Nadu Government, and exposition of the fable of Devasahayam Pillai who was canonized as saint by the Catholic Church. He has authored 8 books and written hundreds of articles concerning Bharat and Hindu Dharma.
SESSION 6: Panel Discussion (Saturday, 25 Nov: 4.15 – 5.30 p.m.)
Shri Rajendra Pandey and Shri Subrahmanyam Ramarathinam
Shri Rajendra Pandey
President, VHP South Australia, Adelaide, Australia
Shri Rajendra Pandey is the President of the Vishva Hindu Parishad of Australia (SA) and national spokesperson for VHP Australia. He is currently serving as a Captain in the Australian Army, he is a Justice of the Peace for South Australia, a Board Member of the Australia Day Council of South Australia, a member of peak government body for Multiculturalism, the South Australian Multicultural Commission, and a board member of Multicultural Communities Council of SA. He started several initiatives in Australia, like Hindu Funeral Helpline, Hindu Women Helpline, first ever VHP Sports Association, Cricket Club, Hindu Business Directory, Hindu Vivah and JeevaDaan, a blood donation campaign.
Shri Subrahmanyam Ramarathinam
Software Professional and Coordinator, HOTA New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
Shri Subrahmanyam Ramarathinam is a software professional working in Sydney based companies since 1988. He coordinates New South Wales (NSW) HOTA team of VHP Australia, which has been organising Annual HOTA meetings and Raksha Bandhan festival since 2014. He conducts weekly Krishna Yajur Veda classes to students in Australia. In 2012, Shri Ramarathinam was responsible in establishing Vedic and Cultural Centre of Australia (VCCA). Through VCCA, he has been coordinating various classes like Vishnu Sahasranaama, Lalitha Sahasranaama, etc and organizing annual Lakshaarchanas, Ekadasha Rudram and Mahaa Rudram events in NSW.
Panellist 1 – Shri Jay Shankar Mukherjee
Bharati The Bengali Association of Thailand
Shri Jay Shankar Mukherjee professionally works for Bharatiya IT M&C company in Thailand. He is based in Bangkok with his family since last more than 18 years. Though he has left Bharat 23 years before he considers himself as a ‘Bharatiya’ first and serves the society with ‘Seva Parama Dharma’ in mind. Jay has also served Bharat Thai Chamber of Commerce (ITCC) as a General Secretary. Apart from Bharati, Bengali Association Jay is also an active member of Viswa Hindu Parishad (VHP), Ramkrishna Vedanta Society (RVAT), Bharatiya Association of Thailand (IAT) and Overseas Friend of BJP (OFBJP).
Panellist 2 – Shri Mahesh Ramchandani
Thai Sindhi Association
Shri Mahesh Ramchandani, born in Thailand, is the Director of the Thai Sindhi Association and Joint Secretary at the Bharat Thai Chamber of Commerce (ITCC). The ITCC is a not-for-profit organisation, and is a form of business network that plays an active role in the relationship between the business communities of both Bharat and Thailand. He also lead a Alumni Association at the Ekamai International School, co-owns two successful enterprises specializing in garments, and property investment.
Panellist 4 – Shri Gopinathan S
Thailand Tamil Sangam, Senior Finance Professional
Shri Gopinathan comes from the temple city of Madurai, Tamil Nadu. After completing his studies in FCMA, CGMA and MBA, he is now working as a senior finance professional in Banpu group. He is associated with Thailand Tamil Sangam for more than 18 years and hold the position of Treasurer and cultural coordinator. He has conducted many cultural programs and Bharatiya festivals such as Deepavali and Pongal, and sports events for kids and adults. He has special interest and passion on Tamil language and light music.
Panellist 4 – Shri Arvind Sachdev
Punjabi, Hindu Samaj Dev Mandir
An entrepreneur born and educated in Thailand as director in businesses such as manufacturing, trading of textiles, hospitality and real estate. Currently Arvind is a member of Thai Textile Merchant Association. Multiple times served as director of Bharat Thai Chamber of Commerce. He had served as president of Bharat Vidhyalaya School Board and is currently a board member. Presently serving as Vice President of Hindu Samaj Dev Mandir Bangkok. He is a recipient of Royal Order Benjamadirekkhunaporn bestowed for being an outstanding citizen service to the country.
Panellist 6 – Avinash Singh
Hindu Dharma Sabha / Vishnu Temple
Avinash Singh is an MBA graduate from Symbiosis with a specialization in Marketing. He was born in Kolkata and completed his bachelor’s degree from Calcutta University. With more than eight years of experience in the Gemstone and Jewelry Industry in Bangkok, Thailand, he has gained extensive knowledge in the field. Apart from this, Avinash is an active member of Hindu DHARMA SABHA – Vishnu Temple, a religious organization that promotes Hindu culture and values in Thailand.