Chairman, Observer Research Foundation, Mumbai


Day 1 – 13 Nov 2017

SESSION ONE: The New Geopolitics: The Role of China in an Uncertain World | 10.50 am - 12.30 pm

Mr. Sudheendra Kulkarni, a well-known Indian socio-political activist, is the Chairman of the Observer
Research Foundation (ORF) Mumbai, an independent public policy think tank. He is closely associated with efforts to promote mutual understanding, trust and cooperation between India and China. In collaboration with the University of Mumbai, ORF Mumbai has established the Ji Xianlin Centre for India-China Studies. Kulkarni is also involved in the non-governmental efforts to promote India-Pakistan peace and normalisation.

An alumnus of the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay, he started his political career with the Communist Party of India (Marxist), but later joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in 1996. Between 1998 and 2004, he served as a close aide to former Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in the Prime Minister’s Ofce. He also worked as the National Secretary of the BJP, and as secretary to Lal Krishna Advani, India’s former Deputy Prime Minister and former president of the BJP. He resigned from the BJP in 2013 on grounds of ideological differences.

Kulkarni is a leading columnist and political commentator in the Indian media. He is the author of the acclaimed book Music of the Spinning Wheel: Mahatma Gandhi’s Manifesto for the Internet Age (2012). He has written two books on Swami Vivekananda, a revolutionary spiritual leader who presented the true meaning of Hinduism to the world. Kulkarni’s latest book August Voices makes a case for a confederation between India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

Kulkarni lives in Mumbai with his wife Dr. Kamaxi Bhate and daughter Tapas.