Lakshmi Chaudhry, co-founder of Firstpost.com, freelance writer and senior editor. Working at numerous newspapers such as Nation Magazine, The Nation Institute, Wired.com and In These Times she is also an extraordinary speaker with a tremendous experience. She has been Panelist at several events such as: Cracking the Code summit hosted by the Ford Foundation in 2014, Is This the End of America? in 2007, Toward a Progressive Foreign Policy, NetRoots Nation conference in 2006, Keynote Speaker, 20th anniversary symposium of the Chicago Foundation for Women in 2005 and Keynote Speaker, Plenary Session of Power Matters conference hosted by the National Conference for Research on Women in 2005.
Yashwant Sinha is an Indian politician and a former finance minister of India (1990–1991 under Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar and March 1998 – July 2002 under Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee) and foreign minister (July 2002 – May 2004) in Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s cabinet. He is a senior leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) which is now the single most dominant party of the Indian parliament after the 2014 general election. In 2015, in recognition for his contributions to Indo-French relations, Sinha was conferred the Legion of Honor, France’s highest civilian honor.
Pavan K. Varma
A widely admired public speaker, columnist, and television commentator Pavan K. Varma, was till 1st January, 2013 the Indian Ambassador to Bhutan, after which he took premature retirement from service. In the same month, Mr Varma joined as Adviser (Culture) to the Chief Minister of Bihar, with the rank of Cabinet Minister. With effect from 19 June, 2014 he is a Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha). He is a member of the Standing Committee on External Affairs, Committee on Government Assurances and Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. He has also been nominated to the Samsad (Court) of the Visva Bharati University, West Bengal, and the Court of Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.
Siddharth VARADARAJAN, an LSE alumnus, is a journalist and a founding editor of The Wire, a news publication that reimagines the media as a joint venture in the public sphere between journalists, readers, and a concerned citizenry. A former editor of The Hindu, he has also worked for the Times of India, and has reported on the NATO war against Yugoslavia, the war in Iraq and the crisis in Kashmir, the destruction of the Bamiyan Buddhas in Afghanistan, amongst much else. After completing his Phd at Columbia University, he taught economics at New York University, and has also taught journalism at the University of California, Berkeley. He is the author of Gujarat: The Making of a Tragedy (2002).
Sudhir Kakar is a psychoanalyst and writer. He has been a Lecturer at Harvard University, Visiting Professor at the universities of Chicago, McGill, Melbourne, Hawaii, Vienna, INSEAD, and Fellow at the Institutes of Advanced Study, Princeton and Berlin. Kakar’s many honors include the Bhabha and Nehru Fellowships, Boyer Prize of the American Anthropological Association, Kardiner Award of Columbia University, Rockefeller Residency, Germany’s Goethe Medal and Order of Merit. Kakar is the author of eighteen books of non-fiction and five of fiction. His books have been translated into twenty-two languages around the world.