Constitution of the Academic Advisory Board

Dr. Supriya Rai

Director, K J Somaiya Institute of Dharma Studies

Supriya Rai made a transition to academia in 2003, after a ten-year career with the Tatas, as an officer of the Tata Administrative Service. She received her doctorate from Mumbai University in 2008, on Buddhist meditation. She is currently Director of the K. J. Somaiya Institute of Dharma Studies and the Dean of the Faculty of Dharma Studies. Her areas of interest are Buddhist meditation, Central Asian Buddhism (particularly the work of Kumarajiva), Buddhist ethics, gender issues in Buddhism and socially engaged Buddhism. In pursuit of the latter, she led the initiative to set up an outreach project where the mission is to facilitate spiritual practice and livelihood support in the local community. But these are all veils and illusions. In the ultimate analysis, Supriya Rai is a dreamer who loves the rains and Hindustani classical music.

Prof Richard Gombrich

Emeritus Professor of Sanskrit, Oxford University

Richard F. Gombrich (b.1937) took a first class degree in Oriental Studies at Oxford University in 1961 and a D.Phil. in 1970. Before his retirement in 2004, he held the Boden Chair of Sanskrit at Oxford University and a Professorial Fellowship at Balliol College for 28 years. He supervised 50 graduate theses at Oxford University, most of them doctorates and almost all of them on Buddhism. He was made an Honorary Life Member of the International Association of Buddhist Studies in 2008. He is the author of over 200 publications. His academic interests are Pali, early Buddhism, Buddhism in Sri Lanka, and the anthropology and sociology of religion.

Dr. Gauri Mahulikar

Dean of Faculty and Professor in the School of Vedic Knowledge Systems, Chinmay Vishwavidyapeeth

Dr. Gauri Mahulikar is Dean and Professor at Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth, deemed-to-be-university, Ernakulam. She was the Gurudev Tagore Chair of Comparative Literature Professor and former HOD of Sanskrit at Mumbai University where she was instrumental in launching courses in Manuscriptology, Bhakti Literature and Mysticism. She holds a Doctorate in Sanskrit on ‘Vedic Elements in Puranic Mantras and Rituals’. She has published eight books and over 90 research articles. A passionate teacher, Dr. Mahulikar has mentored several doctoral students, 17 being awarded Ph.D degree and is often invited as a speaker by universities and other organisations. She is a member of the Board of Advisors at Indic Today and of the Academic Advisory Board as Eminent Expert of K J Somaiya Institute of Dharma Studies. She is an eminent expert on the board of CIIL, Mysuru. She is Kulapati of Sanskrit Samvardhan Pratishthan, an NGO working on value education in school children and Vice President of Itihas Sankalan Samiti, Konkan region.

Dr. Prasun Chatterjee

Independent researcher and historian

Prasun Chatterjee is a senior publishing professional and an author, researcher and writing skills coach. He holds a PhD in history on travel and description in early modern India. He has written several articles in peer-reviewed journals and his research interests include gender, travel writing, court culture, circulation of substances and marginalization in early modern India. He is the author of a forthcoming book titled Reconfiguring the Orient: Travel and Description in Seventeenth Century India. He has been associated with the publishing industry for fifteen years and is currently Deputy Head, Academic at Primus Books. Dr. Chatterjee has formerly been Editorial Director, Pan Macmillan India and Senior Commissioning Editor, Oxford University Press India. As a guest faculty, he also teaches academic writing and historiography at Dharma Studies, Somaiya Vidyavihar.

Dr. Krishna Abhishek Ghosh

Director, Institute for Vaishnava Studies and Associate Faculty of Hinduism and South Asian Studies

Dr. Krishna Abhishek Ghosh is a scholar and teacher of Hinduism and the world’s religions, as well as the director of the Institute for Vaishnava Studies which is based out of Gainesville, Florida. After completing his undergraduate in English (Hons) from the University of Kolkata, he was awarded the M.St. in the Study of Religion from Mansfield College, Oxford University (2006), and a PhD in Hinduism and the history of religions from the University of Chicago (2014). He was a professor of Hinduism and world’s religions at Grand Valley State University, Michigan and his research interests include religious studies, post/de-colonial studies and Vaishnavism.

Dr. Pallavi Jambhale

Centre Head, Centre for Buddhist Studies

Dr. Pallavi Nalawde Jambhale has been associated with the K. J. Somaiya Centre for Buddhist Studies, Mumbai for nearly two decades and is currently engaged as Head, Centre for Buddhist Studies. She is involved in teaching undergraduate and postgraduate courses related to Buddhist studies and Ancient Indian History,Culture and Archaeology. She has presented various papers at national forums as well as international forums which included ‘Buddhism in Deccan during 2nd C.B.C. to 2nd C.A.D’ and ‘Syncretism in South and Southeast Asia; Adoption and Adaptation’ among others. She is a member of the Board of Studies, AIHC and Buddhist Studies. She is also an invitee member of Board of Studies, Department of History, Ferguson College, Pune. She also undertakes study tours for students for hands-on practical experience at various Buddhist sites such as Nashik, Kanheri, Kuda, Ajanata and Ellora among others. Her primary areas of teaching, interest and focus remain - specialization in rock-cut architecture, ancient Indian history and culture and Buddhist art and architecture.

Dr. Shuddhatam Prakash Jain

Centre Head, Centre for Studies in Jainism

Dr. Shuddhatam Prakash Jain is Head of Centre for Studies in Jainism, Under the K J Somaiya Institute of Dharma Studies at Somaiya Vidyavihar University, Mumbai. He has achieved his education from Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri National Sanskrit University, Delhi. Dr Shuddhatam Prakash Jain has worked in Rastriya Sanskrit Sansthan (Deemed University), Rastriya Ayurved Sansthan, Jaipur & Mangalayatan University, Aligarh. Dr Jain has Fifteen years of teaching experience of UG & PG level.
Dr S P Jain has written more than 25 Books with ISBN & presented more than 30 Research papers in National & International Seminars/Conferences. Dr S P Jain has completed one research project entitled “AARADHANASAMUCHCHYA” funded by Indian Council of Philosophical Research, Delhi. Dr. Jain has achieved an award- “Prof. Ram Gopal Soni Memorial Award of Best Author 2011” for his remarkable written works in Educational field from IPERA (Indian Psycho-metric & Educational Research Association, Patna) & HIBS (Harprasad Institute of Behavioral Studies, Agra).
He has got “Best Citizens of India Award 2014” from International Publisher, New Delhi. and got the award of “Srinath Bhargav Award of Best Spiritual Educationist 2015” form IPERA, Agra. He also got Arhat-Vachan Puruskar 2017 from Kund-Kund Gyanpeeth, Indore.
Dr Shuddhatm prakash Jain has great knowledge of Sanskrit, Prakrit and Philosophy. Dr. Jain guided to 21 PG level dissertations (Research degrees) & one Ph.D. submitted under guidance of Dr. Jain.

Ms Prachi Pathak

Centre Head, Bharatiya Sanskriti Peetham

Prachi Pathak has been teaching in UG and PG programmes of Somaiya since 2006. She has actively contributed to the various publications of Bharatiya Sanskriti Peetham. She has participated as a Hindu Representative in the Inter-religious Youth Meeting organized by Pontifical Urban University held at Assisi, Italy in November 2006.

Lt.Gen.Jagbir Singh

Secretary, Somaiya Vidhyavihar

Lt. Gen. Jagbir Singh is the Secretary for the group of various Trusts under the Somaiya Umbrella. A graduate of the National Defence Academy he was commissioned in the Indian Army in June 1978. A recipient of four Presidential Awards, he held numerous important appointments during the course of his illustrious career spanning almost four decades. In addition to combat and command assignments at various levels he has also been involved in the conduct of numerous studies associated with formulation of strategy, operational concepts, force structuring and transformation of the Army. An alumnus of the National Defence College, New Delhi, he has been a member of the faculty at the prestigious Defence Services Staff College at Wellington. In his last assignment in service Lt. Gen. Jagbir Singh had administrative command of the Indian Army in Peninsular India which also included a number of training, medical and educational establishments. He holds an MPhil Degree in Defence and Strategic Studies from the Madras University.

Mr. Faraz Kagalwalla

Chief Financial Officer of Somaiya Vidyavihar University and Somaiya Vidyavihar & Somaiya Ayurvihar

Faraz is a finance professional with 30 years of experience and has handled important positions with leading Corporates and Start-ups.

Dr. Nandkumar Gilke

Registrar, Somaiya Vidyavihar University

Dr. Nandkumar Gilke is Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering in K J Somaiya College of Engineering for the last 28 years. He served as ex-member of Management Council, Academic Council and Faculty of Technology of University of Mumbai.