We are excited to announce our keynote speakers and panels. A tentative conference schedule is available here. Please note that speakers are subject to change.

Keynote Speakers

sp CroppedSuresh Prabhu, Railway Minister of India (via Video Conference)

Suresh Prabhu is currently the Railway Minister of India under Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Since 1996, Prabhu has been elected four times as a Member of the Lok Sabha from Rajapur Constituency of Maharastra – one of the biggest states of India. He has served as the Industry Minister, Minister of Environment and Forests, Minister of Fertilizers and Chemicals, and the Union Minister for Power. He is well known for his easy accessibility to the public, which not only acts as a deterrent to the bureaucratic delays and corruption in the functioning of the Ministry, but also encourages new ideas and view points.  Mr. Prabhu is a practicing Chartered Accountant and had his own accountancy firm before joining politics in 1996. His prior professional experiences include banking, social work and education.


Dinesh Paliwal, Chairman, President, and CEO of Harman International

Dinesh Paliwal’s tenure at Harman began in 2007, and he has since expanded the company’s business in high-growth emerging markets, built a diverse board and strong leadership team, and instituted best-in-class operating processes. He also serves on the Board of Directors for Bristol-Myers Squibb. In 2010, E&Y named Mr. Paliwal ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ for the New York region. In 2012, the Asian American Business Development Center presented him with the ‘Pinnacle Award.’ In 2014, he was named to Fortune’s Business Person of the Year list.



 Ramesh Tainwala, CEO of Samsonite International S.A.

Ramesh Tainwala has served as an Executive Director of Samsonite International since February 2011 and as the company’s CEO since October of 2014. Prior to his appointment as CEO, Mr. Tainwala served as the company’s COO as well as the company’s President for Asia-Pacific and the Middle East. Mr. Tainwala previously worked in the plastic processing and consumer goods industries, including with Tainwala Chemicals & Plastics Limited. Mr. Tainwala has been recognized as an entrepreneur in the plastic processing and consumer goods industries.



Jagdish Bhagwati, Professor of Economics, Law, and International Affairs at Columbia University

Jagdish Bhagwati is a professor at Columbia University and a Senior Fellow in International Economics at the Council on Foreign Relations. He has been a Special Adviser to the UN on globalization and External Adviser to the WTO. The recipient of six festschrifts in his honor, he has also received several prizes and honorary degrees, including Padma Vibhushan from the Indian government. Professor Bhagwati’s book In Defense of Globalization was published by Oxford University Press in 2004 to worldwide acclaim.




Manufacturing & Infrastructure Panel: Make in India 

With the government’s new emphasis on value added manufacturing and infrastructure, how can we redefine our approach and best capitalize on India’s resources?

Untitled CroppedAir Vice Marshal (Retd) Arvind Jeet Singh Walia AVSM VSM, Regional Executive, Sikorsky – India and South Asia

Air Vice Marshal Walia retired from the Indian Air Force after an illustrious career spanning 36 years. During his Air Force career, the Air Marshal served on various high pressure and important assignments. After his retirement, Air Marshal Walia served as the Chief Executive Officer of India’s first aircraft fractional ownership company. Before joining Sikorsky in May 2007, he was CEO of an aviation company. AVM Walia is recipient of Sikorsky’s first ever “Breakthrough Market Award.” He received this coveted excellence award for his persistent efforts and support toward development of Sikorsky’s market in India and the South Asian region. He leads a comprehensive approach to Sikorsky’s business in the country, including managing the sales force and in-country sales representatives to pursue and close business opportunities, developing the aftermarket, managing key accounts and leading Sikorsky’s industrialization efforts. He has been honored by the President of India twice for Distinguished Services of very high order. He also has the distinction of being honored by the Chief of Air Staff twice in his career. Air Marshal Walia is a keen golfer and enjoys doing SUDOKU.


Ken Silverman heads all North American initiatives for Sannam S4 Consulting, Pvt., Ltd., the preeminent India market-entry specialist. The company, with offices across India, has served more than 200 leading corporations, universities, and non-profit organizations. Ken is a veteran international executive, entrepreneur, and strategist with more than three decades’ experience. His clients and initiatives have also included the fields of technology, healthcare, education, and a diverse range of charitable institutions. Since 1997 he has particularly focused on India. On behalf of Tata and other Indian clients he secured, negotiated, and oversaw India-based assignments for the Walt Disney Company, DreamWorks, Hasbro, MGM, Sony, 20th Century Fox, Warner Brothers, and others. Ken is a Charter Member of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE), Vice President and a member of the Board of Directors of the South Asian Studies Association (SASA), and Chairman of the Board of the non-profit Caritas Telecommunication.

Khandelwal CroppedAmit Khandelwal, Professor – Columbia Business School (Moderator)

Amit Khandelwal is Gary Winnick and Martin Granoff Associate Professor of Business at Columbia Business School. His research focuses on the link between international trade and economic development. He has authored several studies on the impact of trade liberalization on manufacturing activity in China and India, and is currently running two field experiments on export promotion and industrial policy in Egypt and Pakistan. He teaches the Emerging Markets classs, and International Seminars on the Chinese and Indian economies. Prof. Khandelwal is affiliated with the National Bureau of Economic Research, the International Growth Centre and the Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development. He holds a PhD in economics from Yale University.



Fireside Chat: Future of Indo-US Relations

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Dnyaneshwar Mulay, Consul General of India, New York, USA

Ambassador Dnyaneshwar Mulay has been recognized nationally and internationally as a prominent thought leader, diplomat, and author.  Prior to his appointment as Consul General of India in New York, he served at the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi and has also been posted in India missions in Tokyo, Moscow, and Port Louis. He served as Minister in Damascus and was High Commissioner of India to the Maldives from 2009-2013. Mulay is also an award winning writer in Marathi and Hindi and has a keen interest in education, the environment (particularly water security) and socio-economic issues.



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Ronak Desai, India and South Asia Program Affiliate, Belfer Center, Harvard University

Ronak D. Desai is an academic at the Belfer Center’s India and South Asia Program at Harvard University and an emerging scholar in the fields of law and foreign policy.  He has published and lectured extensively in these arenas.  His work focuses on U.S.-India relations, international security, international law, and corruption. Until recently, Mr. Desai was an attorney at the law firm of O’Melveny & Meyers LLP in Washington D.C. where his practice encompassed a wide range of investigatory, litigation, regulatory, and public policy matters.

In 2006, Mr. Desai was involved in efforts to help secure Congressional passage for the landmark U.S.-India Civilian Nuclear Deal, which was signed into law by President George W. Bush that same year. Mr. Desai is a member of the Aspen India Strategy Group and a Fellow at the Truman National Security Project. He also teaches a popular course on U.S. foreign policy toward South Asia at the Johns Hopkins University. Mr. Desai is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University, the Harvard Kennedy School, and Harvard Law School.


Social Responsibility Panel: Inclusive Growth

Can India achieve inclusive growth?  What can the private, public, and social sectors do to help those being left behind in India’s economic boom?

Sanjay Bhatnagar

Sanjay Bhatnagar, Chief Executive Officer, WaterHealth International

Sanjay Bhatnagar has been with WaterHealth International (WHI) since 2009, bringing extensive global experience in infrastructure development and management into the fold of social enterprise. His organization WHI helps deploy large scale water purification strategies to underserved communities. Mr Bhatnagar is a leading expert on investment and development of large scale energy, power, gas, and telecom infrastructure, particularly in emerging markets such as India. He also holds leadership roles in the Global Agenda Council on Water, the World Economic Forum, and the UN Advisory Board on Water & Sanitation to name a few.



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Dinyar Devitre, Executive Chairman, Pratham USA

Dinyar (Dinny) Devitre serves as the Executive Chairman of Pratham USA; Pratham is the largest educational  movement in India helping to eradicate child illiteracy through innovative programs such as Read India. Mr Devitre is a senior international business executive who has held leadership positions over a 40-year period in the consumer products and banking industries in Asia, Australia, Europe, and the US. He is currently a Special Advisor to General Atlantic Partners and is a member of the Board of Directors of Altria Group, SABMiller, Markit, and The Western Union Company.



Mallika DuttMallika Dutt President & CEO, Breakthrough

Mallika Dutt is the founder and president of Breakthrough. More than a decade ago, Mallika resolved to bring the values of human rights out of the ivory towers and policy papers and into the lives and actions of real people. Prior to founding Breakthrough, Mallika served as Program Officer for Human Rights and Social Justice at the Ford Foundation’s office in New Delhi and as the Director of the Norman Foundation in NYC, which addressed human rights issues across the United States. Mallika currently serves on the boards of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Peace is Loud, and NEO Philanthropy. A graduate of NYU Law School, and Columbia University’s School of International Affairs, Mallika is also the recipient of an honorary doctorate from her undergraduate college, Mt. Holyoke.


RB CroppedRitu Banga, Co-Founder Zoomdojo (Moderator)

Ritu Banga is co-founder of Zoomdojo, a start-up job search and career resource for students and young professionals. Zoomdojo works with student organizations and universities around the world, including in the US, Canada, China and India. Its online resources can be found at www.zoomdojo.com. Ritu is also a trustee of Marymount School, New York. From 2007 to 2011, she was on the board of the Asian University for Women Support Foundation and played a key role in the launch of this university in Bangladesh. She is a graduate of Delhi University and the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.




Healthcare Panel: Quality, Access, and Outcomes

How can the life sciences sector, healthcare services and delivery, and policy meet to improve India’s healthcare quality, access, and outcomes?

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Ravi Limaye, President – Marketing, Biocon

Ravi Limaye has served as the President – Marketing at Biocon since 2014 and is responsible for Biocon’s global Biopharmaceutical Business  He has wide commercial experience in India, Emerging Regions and Asia Pacific.  Prior to joining Biocon he was with Novartis in India responsible for their Specialty Business Franchise as well as Business Development and Licensing.  He spent 14 years in GlaxoSimithkline with responsibilities in India, Emerging Markets and Asia Pacific.




TATamer Abdelgawad, Senior Director, International Policy, Pfizer 

Tamer Abdelgawad is Senior Director, International Policy at Pfizer Inc.  He joined Pfizer in 2006 and has worked on pharmaceutical innovation, intellectual property, US health reform, and pharmaceutical policy in emerging economies.  Most recently, he has focused on tiered pricing access initiatives and the progress and implementation of universal health coverage in low and middle income countries.  Prior to joining Pfizer, Tamer was an adjunct professor of Economics at SUNY Brockport and an independent consulting economist.  He obtained his bachelors in Applied Mathematics and Economics from Brown University and his masters in Economics from the University of Rochester



RARitendra Roy, CFO, TrackMyBeat

Ritendra Roy is the Chief Financial Officer at TrackMyBeat, an innovative healthcare technology and analytics company headquartered in Gurgaon, India.  TrackMyBeat has developed connected health and wellness management system with focus on non-communicable diseases for remote monitoring. TrackMyBeat’s solutions have been launched in India in the urban and rural markets.  Prior to TrackMyBeat Ritendra was an investment banker with J.P. Morgan in New York for ten years.  He has also worked in strategy with Marsh &McLennan and in corporate banking with HSBC, India.  Ritendra is a graduate from St. Stephen`s College, IIM Kolkata and NYU Stern School of Business.




Ranu Dhillon, Adjunct Assistant Professor (SIPA) and Senior Health Advisor (Earth Institute), Columbia University

Ranu Dhillon is a Senior Health Advisor with the Earth Institute at Columbia University and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs.  He has over ten years of experience in healthcare delivery and the design and implementation of health systems. He sits on the International Advisory Panel to the National Rural Health Mission in India, the Ministerial Working Group for Ministers of Health from Nigeria, India, China, Ethiopia and Kenya and the Board of Directors for Spark MicroGrants.



SD CroppedSandeep Duttagupta, PhD, Principal & Vice President, CBPartners

Sandeep Duttagpupta is a Principal & Vice President with CBPartners, focused on providing strategic guidance to healthcare clients dealing with all emerging markets commercialization issues.  Prior to joining CBPartners, Dr. Duttagupta spent two decades with Pfizer, where he most recently ran the pharmaceutical pricing and market access functions within the emerging markets.  In this role, he led the development of the company’s strategic emerging markets pricing framework, devised multiple innovative access initiatives involving local banks and NGOs, and implemented partnerships with Ministries of Health around the world.