Ramesh Ramanathan is a social entrepreneur, and works on urban issues in India. He is co-founder of Janaagraha Centre for Citizenship and Democracy, a non-profit focused on transforming quality of life in Urban India. He is also Chairman of Janalakshmi Social Services, a not-for-profit social business holding company that has promoted enterprises in urban financial inclusion and urban affordable housing.
Ramesh works closely with government on urban issues in a pro-bono capacity. His current positions include being the National Technical Advisor, Government of India for the Jawarharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission, the country's flagship urban mission.
Prior to his social initiatives, Ramesh held leadership positions with Citibank in New York and London, in the bank’s capital markets business.
Ramesh has an MS in Physics from BITS Pilani, an MBA from Yale University and a CFA from AIMR. In 2007, he was chosen as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.
Swati Ramanathan is co-founder of Janaagraha Centre for Citizenship and Democracy - a thinker-practitioner “do-tank” - committed to transforming India’s cities and citizenship. Janaagraha takes a systems approach to addressing urban challenges, working both with citizens at the grassroots, as well as with all three federal tiers of government. Ms Ramanathan leads Janaagraha’s innovations in technology for greater government accountability and citizen participation. She has received international recognition for ipaidabribe.com on retail corruption; and ichangemycity.com on hyper local citizen participation, most recently winning Google’s Global Impact Challenge, 2013.
Ms Ramanathan is also Chairperson of Jana Urban Space Foundation, commited to improving urban planning and urban design in India’s cities. Ms Ramanathan was honored by the Government of Rajasthan with the Rajyotsava Puraskar - Rajasthan’s highest civilian award - for her work on the Jaipur 2025 Master plan. She has prepared the National Urban Spatial Planning and Development (NUSPD) 2013 Guidelines, for planning India’s cities, at the behest of the Ministry of Urban Development, and the Planning Commission, Government of India. These Guidelines will be linked to the reforms required by Indian States under Government of India’s largest urban mission – Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Reforms Mission-II. Ms Ramanathan’s work on Urban Design standards for city roads have been accepted as the desired standards by the state of Karnataka (Tender SURE – Specifications for Urban Road Execution).
Ms Ramanathan holds a BS from India and an MS from Pratt Institute, N.Y., and she frequently publishes and writes.
With over three decades experience in projects and manufacturing management in FMCG, Food, Paper and Chemicals, Mr Nayar has wide spectrum experience in new and green field units’ up-gradation, expansion, building and commissioning.
He was formerly the Executive Director at Unilever Subsidiaries in India, UK and Egypt where he focused on Technology, Profit Improvement programmes, Acquisitions and Mergers.
Mr Nayar has been associated with Janaagraha since 2004. He has been heading the Janaagraha Working Council and has recently become one of the Trustees.
Sapna is the coordinator of our Human Resources and Volunteer Management program. She comes with five years of experience as a software developer. Sapna joined Janaagraha right from its inception ten years ago and is an invaluable member of the Janaagraha team. In her time at Janaagraha, she has assisted in both community grassroots campaigns as well as in government and technology related interventions. Her forte is volunteer management and under her leadership, Janaagraha has had more than 10,000 volunteers who have contributed their energy to the organisation.
Valli manages the Bala Janaagraha program at Janaagraha. She comes with several years of experience in counselling, marketing and market research. Besides this, she has also managed the Annual Concerts for youth at the National Academy of Learning, Bangalore.
Valli has a Double Majors in Psychology and Sociology from Mumbai University. She is an avid percussionist, plays seven musical instruments and has taught music to underprivileged children at Sunday School.
In his role as Coordinator-ARC, Srikanth covers the following initiatives of Janaagraha
• Public Record Of Operations and Finance, a program that focusses on reforms in municipal finance
• Annual Survey of India's City-Systems, Janaagraha's flagship initiative on urban governance benchmarking of cities
• Destination Organisation Charts, a program on reforms in municipal staffing
• Open Works, a program on quality of life measurement in cities, transparency in city budgets and civic works
Srikanth is an Associate member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India and prior to Janaagraha worked with Standard Chartered Bank and KPMG
Gen. Prasad retired from the Indian Army. He taught Military Law and Police duties to Corps of Military Police. In addition, he was the Director of the Defence Institute of Quality Assurance, Bangalore.
In his spare time, he teaches yoga, enjoys reading and music and is known for his funny bone.
Partha comes with a 22 years of experience in sales & marketing in NGO’s–like GreenPeace, Akshay Patra and Plan India, in Television with Discovery Networks India, in Beverages and Tyres with Pepsi & Dunlop. He is an expertise in managing business operations, formulating and implementing business strategies, developing new business, management of franchising processes, key accounts and debtors. He is also experienced in managing international markets of Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan. He has a Bachelors and Master’s Degree in English Literature from University of Calcutta.
Indu manages Administration at Janaagraha. Qualified as a primary school teacher, he joined Janaagraha at its inception, ten years ago. His commitment and dedication to the organisation stems from passion and energy in Janaagraha.
Indu is an avid sports-lover and likes to play cricket in his free time.
Babu comes to Janaagraha with 18 years of IT experience in ERP, Hospitality and Healthcare domains. He has managed Operations (IT/Admin) for almost 7 years and also started an IT company, GreeneStep Technologies, in 2008.
He is passionate about driving and networking.
Venkatesh Kannaiah is a senior editor and Knight International Journalism Fellow with wide-ranging experience working at news agencies, print outlets and online publications. He started his career at United News of India (UNI), India’s leading news agency, and moved to financial publications including The Financial Express and The Business and Political Observer. For nearly a decade, he worked with Sify.com, India’s leading news Web site, where he led content teams to connect with Indian Internet users. After a stint with AOL, he was a Knight Journalism Fellow in India mentoring and training journalists on the theme of Right To Information and e-governance. He also managed the news team at MSN India website before joining Janaagraha.
Vidya Sampath has joined us as Manager – Human Resources.
She comes with over 8 years of experience at various capacities in IT, FMCG & Beverage industry. She holds a Masters in Human resource from Visveswariah Technological University, Belgaum and continues to pursue research in the same university. She has presented and published papers in different forums on human resource sustainability and deriving competitive advantage through human resources.
With a keen interest in women and child development she intends to contribute in this realm sometime later. Apart from this she enjoys writing, is an avid reader and loves food.
PrafullaKumar Dhal has joined us as Senior Project Manager, leading our initiatives in Odisha. Mr Dhal is a senior development sector professional who has served in a number of government and Non-Government agencies spanning over 20 years in various capacities as a leader.
Mr Prafulla is awarded with the prestigious Environmentalist of the Year 2011 Award from the Odisha Environmental Society and Indian Science Congress Odisha Chapter, for his work towards protection of urban environment and ensuring sustainable drinking water and sanitation to urban poor in Bhubaneswar.
Mr Dhal , has studied in JNU New Delhi and has obtained his Master and MPhil degree from Centre for Political Studies. He has produced a number of research papers in many journals and newspapers, to his credit Mr Dhal was special invitee and has contributed to Vision 2020 on primary education in Odisha and co-author of Youths and Adolescent Profile -2004.
Sunil Nair has joined us as Community Outreach Manager in our JanaOnline Cluster.
He is a graduate in Physics from the University of Mumbai and is an alumnus of NMIMS Mumbai and IIM lucknow. An ex Army Major, he has served in combat operations in north Kashmir. After completion of his short service commission in the Army, he has worked in operations and retail marketing in the ITES and retail sectors prior to joining the Janaagraha team.
An avid outdoor enthusiast, he likes off road cycling and is a competitive trail walker.
Sunil Arland has joined us as Sr. Manager - Finance. He has done B.Com in Accounts and Business Management. He started his profession with SPML Infra Ltd. His core area of work was handling Tax matters for both direct and indirect taxes on PAN India basis.
In his free time he watches sports, particularly cricket, football and tennis. He is also fond of travelling to new places and reading books.
Sylvia has over 23 years of work experience in organisations like Mindtree and Wipro, playing roles such as a developer, project manager, head of the testing practice and process evangelist. Sylvia is also a member of the ISO/IEC JTC7 Working Group 26 software Testing. As part of this, she is a co-editor of the new ISO/IEC 29119 Software Testing standard.
Prior to joining Janaagraha, Sylvia was Vice President Testing Practice at Mindtree where she played the role of a Process Evangelist and headed the Delivery Enablement for the Testing Business Unit.
Sylvia is married to R K Veeraraghavan, and has a 13 year old daughter Ananya.
It has been a long time dream of Sylvia’s to contribute back to the society in some way, and she hopes to achieve this through Janaagraha. She is an avid reader, apart from which she dabbles with paint in her free time.
Juby has joined Janaagraha as Creative Manager. He was born in New Delhi and spent 20 years in Kuwait where he completed his basic education. He has been through the gulf war which brought him back to India. He attained degree in Applied art from the College of Fine Arts, Trivandrum. He worked with an advertising agency in Dubai for 4 years, then moved to an exhibition and events company called CITYNEON LTD as principal designer in Bahrain for another 6 years, worked with WIZCRAFT as Creative Director (South)for 5 years, followed by a 1.5 year stint in GPJ project: Worldwide as National Creative Director.
As for his hobbies and passion are concerned, music, he says, will always be his first wife. As a keyboardist he composes music in his free time. He was a founding member of the band "avial", and now, he continues to jam with Classic Rock band in Bangalore.
Vivek has joined us as Digital Marketing Manager. Having done his MBA from PES College, Vivek started his career with ICICI securities as a Management Trainee & later on moved to Intrepid Online Retail Pvt. Ltd as Marketing Executive where he grew to become the Marketing Manager.
He loves gaming and is a religious follower of English Premier League, Liverpool FC being his favorite team.
Manjula is a B.Sc( Microbiology) and has worked in the BPO industry for over 10 years. Manjula believes in the tenet that 'the best way to shape the world of tomorrow is to shape the children of today' and that is what got her interested in Janaagraha.
Anupama has worked as teacher in a number of schools and as a lecturer in Presidency junior college and Jain college of commerce Jaya Nagar. She holds a B.A in Hindi literature, political science and economics. She also holds an M.A and Ph. D in Hindi Literature from Maharaja Ganga Singh University , Bikaner.
Anupama enjoys reading poetry she also writes poetry.
Chaitanya Tupaki Sreepoorna comes with over 7 years of experience in Program Management and Business Operations in both IT & Non - IT sectors. She strongly believes in being a part of change-solutions for the larger good and in that regard find Janaagraha’s credo of work truly inspiring.
Chaitanya loves reading books, listening to music and travelling.
Katie Pyle comes with more than eleven years’ experience in a combination of project management, social research, and research implementation. Katie previously worked as a Research Manager at the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) based in the UK where she managed the running of NFER’s omnibus and panel surveys and developed and launched their Pupil and Parent Voice. She was also an operations manager with NFER’s Trials unit. Katie worked on English primary and secondary school National Curriculum assessment development projects.
Katie has a wide range of publications, most notably as lead author on the pre-test effect in science assessment in England as well as a range of reports and conference presentations on the view of teachers in England on contemporary issues in education such as government education reforms and equality and human rights in schools. Katie has worked closely with a range of organisations such as the Department for Education in England, the Equality and Human Rights Commission, the Office of the Children’s Commissioner for England and the British Council.
Katie has a first class BSc. (hons) in Psychology from the University of Warwick and an MSc. (with distinction) in Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology from the University of Wales, Bangor.
She loves sport, especially martial arts.
Capt. Smita Gaikwad joins us as Manager, PURE List Management Program and Community Policing in the Janaroots team. She is a veteran from the Indian Army where she worked as Corps of Engineers Officer for five years. She is a B.Sc (Physics) Graduate from Pune University and an alumnus of IIM Kolkata. Post her Army tenure, she worked in the core HR field with corporates like Cummins and Vodafone for five years.
Smita is an adventure enthusiast with participation in national level aquatic events and various sailing expeditions . In her spare time, she enjoys reading, travelling and photography.
Ambar joins Janaagraha as Manager-Open Works in the ARC Team. He has 12 years industry experience in Business Analytics. His last engagement was with Tata Consultancy Services prior to which he worked at Genpact and Symphony Services, all based in Bangalore. Ambar has a Master’s degree in Economics from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Having grown up in Delhi, Ambar has made Bangalore his home for more than a decade and loves this city - it is one of his reasons for choosing to work at Janaagraha.
In his free time Ambar likes to play the guitar and spend time with his wife, Aditi who currently teaches Film at Srishti School of Art and Design.
Shivkumar Menon joins us as Manager-Corporate Partnership. He has 15 year professional career graph, specializing in business development, strategy, New Product Development, working with a cross section of industries spinning customized solutions in the areas of risk management & Process Improvement. He is pursuing a Business Management Degree from XLRI and a Master’s in Business Law from the National Law University, Bangalore.
He has joined Janaagraha to support and build long lasting corporate partnerships for the organization, partnerships which are aligned to our core values. He believes strongly in the approach and areas adopted by the Jana Family and would like to add value in the same areas.
His hobbies are reading, writing, cooking, trekking and travelling.
Anil Nair joins us as Senior Manager- Advocacy in the ARC team. He worked in PRS Legislative Research, a legislative research organisation which provides research support to Members of Parliament and Legislative Assemblies. At PRS, he was responsible for the MLA outreach program - establishing relationships with state legislators and legislatures in order to provide legislative research services.
Anil also had sales stints in Consumer Goods and Financial Services. He also spent a couple of years managing AIDS awareness program for truck drivers as part of the Bill and contributed to the Melinda Gates Avahan initiative. He has an MBA from IIM Calcutta and holds an engineering degree from VJTI in Mumbai.
All his free time is taken up by his daughters, Keya and Uttara!
Sachin Harihar Singh joined us as Manager- Strategic Partnership in the P & D team. He has 12.6 years of work experience in development sector for Fundraising & Mobilization. He worked with Greenpeace India. He has completed a Masters in Marketing Management.
His hobbies are cycling & playing cricket.