Raghu Rai was born in the small village of Jhhang, now part of Pakistan. He took up photography in 1965, and the following year joined “The Statesman” newspaper as its chief photographer. Impressed by an exhibit of his work in Paris in 1971, Henri Cartier-Bresson nominated Rai to join Magnum Photos in 1977.
Rai left “The Statesman” in 1976 to work as picture editor for “Sunday,” a weekly news magazine published in Calcutta. He left in 1980 and worked as Picture Editor/Visualizer/Photographer of “India Today”, India’s leading news magazine, during its formative years. From 1982 to 1991, he worked on special issues and designs, contributing trailblazing picture essays on social, political and cultural themes, many of which became the talking point of the magazine.
In the last 18 years, Rai has specialized in extensive coverage of India. He has produced more than 18 books, including Raghu Rai’s Delhi, The Sikhs, Calcutta, Khajuraho, Taj Mahal, Tibet in Exile, India, and Mother Teresa.
For Greenpeace, he has completed an in-depth documentary project on the chemical disaster at Bhopal in 1984, and on its ongoing effects on the lives of gas victims. This work resulted in a book and three exhibitions that have been touring Europe, America, India and southeast Asia since 2004, the 20th anniversary of the disaster. Rai hopes that the exhibition can support the many survivors through creating greater awareness, both about the tragedy, and about the victims – many who are still uncompensated – who continue to live in the contaminated environment around Bhopal.
Rai was awarded the ‘Padmashree’ in 1971, one of India’s highest civilian awards ever given to a photographer. In 1992, his National Geographic cover story “Human Management of Wildlife in India” won him widespread critical acclaim for the piece. Besides winning many national and international awards, Rai has exhibited his works in London, Paris, New York, Hamburg, Prague, Tokyo, Zurich and Sydney. His photo essays have appeared in many of the world’s leading magazines and newspapers including “Time”, “Life”, “GEO”, “The New York Times”, “Sunday Times”, “Newsweek”, “The Independent,” and the “New Yorker”.
He has served three times on the jury of the World Press Photo and twice on the jury of UNESCO’s International Photo Contest.
Raghu Rai lives in Delhi with his family and continues to be an associate of Magnum Photos.
PRATAP BHANU MEHTA
Pratap Bhanu Mehta is an Indian political scientist, constitutional expert and commentator. He is currently the President and Chief Executive of the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi. He was previously Visiting Professor of Government at Harvard University and Associate Professor of Government and of Social Studies at Harvard. He was also Professor of Philosophy and Law and Governance, Jawaharlal Nehru University. He has published widely in reputed national and international journals in a variety of fields including, political philosophy, intellectual history, constitutional law, international politics, society and politics in India. His most recent book are The Burden of Democracy and Public Institutions in India: Performance and Design. He has been a prolific contributor to public debates and his columns have regularly appeared in The New Republic, Foreign Policy, The Hindu, Indian Express, Telegraph, Yale Global, and numerous other papers. He has served as Editorial Consultant to the Indian Express. He is co-editor of The Oxford Companion to Politics in India (forthcoming), and serves on the editorial board of numerous journals. He has lectured widely in universities in the United States, Britain, New Zealand, Europe and Japan.
Dr. Mehta obtained a B.A. from St. John’s College, Oxford where he read PPE and a Ph.D. in Politics from Princeton University.
He has been a columnist for, among others, The New Republic, Foreign Policy, The Hindu, and the Calcutta Telegraph and has served as an editorial consultant for the Indian Express.
Pratap Bhanu Mehta, resigned as the members of the Knowledge Commission .His resignation letter is a case study in clear, and coherent expression of thought, a highly-recommended piece for aspiring essayists… what am I saying? Read the letter yourself and tell me if you won’t come away feeling as defeated as I am.
THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN (Brand Ambassador Of India)
Thomas L. Friedman, a world-renowned author and journalist, joined The New York Times in 1981 as a financial reporter specializing in OPEC- and oil-related news and later served as the chief diplomatic, chief White House, and international economics correspondents. A three-time Pulitzer Prize winner, he has traveled hundreds of thousands of miles reporting the Middle East conflict, the end of the cold war, U.S. domestic politics and foreign policy, international economics, and the worldwide impact of the terrorist threat. His foreign affairs column, which appears twice a week in the Times, is syndicated to seven hundred other newspapers worldwide.
Friedman is the author of From Beirut to Jerusalem (FSG, 1989), which won both the National Book Award and the Overseas Press Club Award in 1989 and was on the New York Times bestseller list for nearly twelve months. From Beirut to Jerusalem has been published in more than twenty-seven languages, including Chinese and Japanese, and is now used as a basic textbook on the Middle East in many high schools and universities. Friedman also wrote The Lexus and the Olive Tree (FSG, 1999), one of the best selling business books in 1999, and the winner of the 2000 Overseas Press Club Award for best nonfiction book on foreign policy. It is now available in twenty languages. His last book, Longitudes and Attitudes: Exploring the World After September 11, issued by FSG in 2002, consists of columns Friedman published about September 11 as well as a diary of his private experiences and reflections during his reporting on the post-September world as he traveled from Afghanistan to Israel to Europe to Indonesia to Saudi Arabia. In 2005, The World Is Flat was given the first Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award, and Friedman was named one of America’s Best Leaders by U.S. News & World Report.
Friedman graduated summa cum laude from Brandeis University with a degree in Mediterranean studies and received a master’s degree in modern Middle East studies from Oxford. He has served as a visiting professor at Harvard University and has been awarded honorary degrees from several U.S. universities. He lives in Bethesda, Maryland, with his wife, Ann, and their two daughters.
I have mentioned just three for a start the list is never ending!
I have mentioned just three for a start the list is never ending! Feel free to comment and even recommend People you believe have the will to change things and whose perspective gives realm of thoughts to many. I will be happy to include them.