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Category: patron

Dr Achyuta Samanta

Prof. Achyuta Samanta, the youngest Chancellor of any Indian University and founder of the Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT) and the Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) in Bhubaneswar, holds a Doctorate degree in Chemistry. He started these institutions in a two-room rented house with only Rs. 5000/-. He is the first Odia and the First Indian to become a member of USC and AICTE and other Government Bodies like NCTE, ISTE, ISCA, COIR Board, CAPART, etc. He has been a member of the Academic Council of Central University of Assam and Odisha.
His contribution towards Education, Health, Culture, Literature, Rural Development, Social Sciences, and Spiritualism conferred him with 39 Honoris Causa Doctorate Awards from prestigious universities across the globe and with Golden Gavel by the World Academy of Arts and Culture (WAAC, recognized by UNESCO), as well as other Civilian awards from countries like Gusi Peace Prize International, Bahrain, and Mongolia.

KISS has become the largest tribal institute in the world providing free education and home to 60,000 tribal children. 20 branches of KISS have been established in different countries.

Dr Samanta works to erase poverty, hunger and illiteracy amongst poor children.

Shona Yograj Nath

A lifelong philanthropist, Shona got involved with Zariya through her late father, Abhey Yograj, who was one of its original patrons. Shona joined her father’s consulting business, TECNOVA, in 2007 to assist foreign companies with their entry into India. She specialised in FMCG, Packaging and industrial and Retail industries and has helped launch some of India’s most well known foreign brands. Shona has a passion for cooking. She lives in Delhi with her husband, Nikhil, and her three children Armaan, Amaaya and Naira.

Philippe Welti

retired from the Swiss Diplomatic Service after accomplishing missions as ambassador to India (including Bhutan) and to Iran, where he was also in charge of the USA Protecting Power mandate. Prior to those two missions, Philippe Welti was, from 1998 until 2004, seconded to the Swiss Defence Ministry in Berne in the capacity of Political Director with the rank of ambassador. In that position, he was in charge of strategic affairs, security policy and the minister’s international relations and he represented the minister at NATO Ministerial Conferences as State Secretary. Today, Philippe Welti is an expert on geopolitical and strategic affairs, regularly publishing and lecturing on Iran, the Middle East and India.

Indu Shrikent

Settlor of the Zariya Trust is one of the founder members of the Indian chapter of Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC). She was the deputy editor of Cinemaya, The Asian Film Quarterly, a journal devoted to Asian cinema and co-director of the Cinefan Film Festival. She has also been the Festival Director of Osian’s-Cinefan Film Festival of Asian and Arab Cinema. She has travelled extensively to major International Film Festivals, including Cannes and has served on many Juries. In 2011, she was President of the Short Film Jury at the Locarno International Film Festival.

Prema Sagar

Vice Chair for Asia Pacific, Burson-Marsteller, and Principal and Founder of Genesis Burson-Marsteller. Inspired by Mother Teresa and her dedication to give back to community, Prema established Genesis Foundation in 1992, which facilitates medical treatment for critically ill, under-privileged children with heart disorders. Since then it has mirrored the journey of India’s public relations and public affairs landscape. Prema has been felicitated with the Individual Achievement SABRE Award at Asia-Pacific SABRE Awards 2017. Prema Sagar is also trustee of the Zariya Trust India.

Jyoti Sagar

founded J. Sagar Associates (JSA) – in New Delhi in 1991 as a solo practitioner. JSA is now one of the leading national firms with over 300 professionals. Jyoti also founded K&S Partners, an Intellectual Property boutique in 1994. K&S now has over 115 professionals and is a leading IP practice. He has pioneered a new paradigm in Indian law firm organization and management structures. Jyoti is Associate President of Society of Indian Law Firms; and one of the International Vice Presidents of Asian Patent Attorneys Association. He is also a member of the Executive Committee of the Bar Association of India, Chairman of the Society for Urban Regeneration of Guragon and Trustee of the Genesis Foundation/supports Deepalaya (engaged in education of slum children in the National Capital Region).

Hans Christian Meiser

Hans Christian Meiser was born in Munich, where he studied philosophy at the Highschool for Philosophy of the Jesuits. Afterwards he started his career as publisher and editor-at-large for several big publishing houses in Germany. He was and is also responsible for print media (such as “Diners Club Magazine” und “Die Gazette”) and internet platforms. As an author, translator and editor-at-large he has published more than 500 books mostly on the sujets philosophy, spirituality, wisdom und health. After he was discovered by Television he gained his own TV talk show. His most recent book “The Hearthealer” will be published in an English version in Summer 2019; its content is based on his message “Love is peace as freedom”.

Isa Von Hardenberg

Founder of the event agency Hardenberg Communications GmbH, Berlin (events for Christo und Jeanne-Claude, BMW, Burda, Bertelsmann, Jil Sander, Axel Springer Verlag AG and World Wide Fund for Nature). Isa von Hardenberg is known for her great support of Innocence in Danger, UNICEF and organisations for autistic children. In 2009 Isa von Hardenberg received the Cross of Merit on Ribbon from the Federal Republic of Germany.

Nik Gugger

Niklaus Samuel Gugger is the first Indian-origin member of the Swiss Parliament. He has always been involved in social service. He worked in an orphanage and with street children in Bogota, Colombia in the early nineties and also served as an emergency psychologist after the devastation caused by Tsunami in Thailand in 2004. As a four-year-old Indian boy, Nik Gugger returned with his Swiss adoptive parents from Kerala to Switzerland. Today, he feels completely Swiss. But he would like to see India prosper and develop in a sound and tolerant way. Therefore, in the Swiss parliament, he is a member of the foreign-commission, with the goal to keep good contact between all the cultures. Nik built up a ‘Youth Church’ for the city of Winterthur. There he runs a Swiss Ayurvedic Restaurant since 2014. His latest achievement as a social entrepreneur is the production of a unique low-calorie Ayurvedic Ginger Drink. Nik Gugger wants to maintain cultural values if they are for the good of the people and at the same time dare to experience new ways. Nik Gugger is married to Beatrice. They have three children.

Nadir Godrej

Nadir Godrej received his in Chemical Engineering in 1973 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a M.S. in Chemical Engineering in 1974 from Stanford University. He did his M B A at Harvard Business School in 1976.

He is the Chairman at Godrej Agrovet Ltd. and Managing Director at Godrej Industries Ltd. He is also the Director on other Group companies and of Mahindra and Mahindra since 1992 and The Indian Hotels Company Limited since 2008.

On the personal side, Nadir Godrej is also the author of “Life and Other Poems” & “Nadir Godrej The Poet”, collections of English and French poems.

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