The changing contours of Maharashtra linked with Samruddhi Mahamarg - Who are the speakers of the event?

Nagpur-Mumbai Samruddhi Mahamarg, connecting JNPT in Mumbai and MIHAN in Nagpur, might be a game-changer for Maharashtra. This project will shorten the commute time from 18 hours to 8 hours. Samruddhi Mahamarg could be for Maharashtra what the Golden Quadrilateral has been for India. This super expressway, undoubtedly, will create new opportunities.

The Free Press Journal in association with MSRDC (Maharashtra State Road Development Corportion) will discuss new opportunities and challenges that the Samruddhi project will throw up. These discussions will take place through a four part webinar series to be held from December 8 to December 11.

The first webinar will talk about the Samruddhi project itself. The others will deal with agro-processing zones, industrial clusters & smart cities, education and skill development – all of which are likely to be game changers for a resurgent Maharashtra.

Details of the series

8 December from 3 to 4:15 pm

Topic: Samruddhi

Panellists: Radheshyam Mopalwar, VC & Managing Director, MSRDC; Vijay Waghmare, Joint Managing Director, MSRDC; and Chandrakant Pulkundwar, Joint Managing Director, MSRDC

The changing contours of Maharashtra linked with Samruddhi Mahamarg - Who are the speakers of the event?

9 December from 3 to 4:15 pm

Topic: Agro-processing zones and value-adding agriculture

Panellists: Deepak Taware, CMD, Maharashtra State Warehousing Corporation; Arun Raste, Executive Director, National Dairy Development Board; and Sachin Sharma, GM & Head- Channel Operations, ITC

The changing contours of Maharashtra linked with Samruddhi Mahamarg - Who are the speakers of the event?

10 December from 12 to 1:15 pm

Topic: Industrial clusters, township and IT

Panellists: Venugopal Reddy, Principal Secretary (Industries), Maharashtra Government; Carlos Rojas- Arbulú, Consul and Senior Trade Commissioner, Consulate General of Canada in Mumbai; Tej Paul Bhatla, VP & Head Public Services Business India, TCS; and Mohit Bhasin, Partner and Lead, KPMG

The changing contours of Maharashtra linked with Samruddhi Mahamarg - Who are the speakers of the event?

11 December from 3 to 4:15 pm

Topic: Education, skill development and jobs

Panellists: Sujata Saunik, Additional Chief Secretary at Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Maharashtra Government; Ramesh Bhat, officiating VC and Dean Management studies, NMIMS University; and Lim Boon Tiong, COO, ITEES, Singapore

The changing contours of Maharashtra linked with Samruddhi Mahamarg - Who are the speakers of the event?

The first (Samruddhi) session will highlight the journey of the project and how it will change the lives of the people of Maharashtra. 24 of the 36 districts in Maharashtra will be connected through this fast-track network. So, understanding this project will be very vital.

The second session ‘Agro-processing zones and value-adding agriculture’ will be around 19 plus new towns (Krishi Samruddhi Nagar), equipped with modern amenities, and agro-based industries. MSRDC has been appointed as a New Town Development Authority (NDTA) for the development and growth of nodes, which is also coined as ‘Krushi Samruddhi Nagar.’

‘Industrial clusters, township and IT’ will be the third webinar. It will go beyond agro-based industries. It will include opportunities in other industries and townships. These towns will offer great opportunities in terms of better agro-based industrial production, trade, smart cities and commercial facilities.

When industries open there will be a need for talent, to fill up the newly created job opportunities. Most of the people will be from areas in the neighbourhood. There will be a need for better education – both schools and colleges, and skill development centres – to exploit the potential that is there is a very young and aspirational population. Some jobs will relate to agriculture, some to new businesses and city management. These will be the concepts that are likely to be discussed during the last session ‘Jobs and skill development’.

Who are the speakers of the webinar series? Let's take a look.

Radheshyam Mopalwar

Mopalwar is the Vice Chairman & Managing Director of Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation Ltd., (MSRDC). With a career spanning nearly 4 decades, Mopalwar has held various positions in the Government of India including Ministry of Rural Development, Ministry of Finance, Forest Department. He was the Joint Managing Director of Maharashtra

Film, Stage and Cultural Development Corporation, Deputy Secretary to the

Chief Secretary, Maharashtra, Jt CEO of MIDC and more.

Mopalwar pursued BA and Law and has had an exciting career in both, Maharashtra government and the Centre.

Vijay Waghmare

Waghmare is the Joint Managing Director of Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC). He was earlier the Managing Direct of Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation, Commissioner Skill Development and Entrepreneurship and CEO of Maharashtra State Skill Development Society. His varied career included stint as Deputy Secretary, Collector and District Magistrate of Chandrapur, Maharashtra, various field level posts in IAS and Ministry of Railways and Defense.

After a degree in Mechanical Engineering, Waghmare went on to pursue a PG Diploma in Management from IIM-Ahmedabad and LLB from Mumbai University. Waghmare also holds a degree in Executive Masters in Public Administration (EMPA) from Syracuse University.

Dr.Chandrakant Pulkundwar

Pulkundwar currently hold the post of Joint Managing Director at MSRDC. He joined as a deputy collector of Yavatmat District in 1993 and went on to hold several positions in the district office. He also held important positions in the government including the Dy CEO of MIDC HQ, Private Secretary to Chief Minister, Private Secretary to Health Minister and more.

He is associated with YASHADA (Yashwantrao Chavan Academy of Development Administration, Pune) as National Trainer & Resource person for Right to Information, since 2005.

He has conducted training programmes of officers and staff at Maharashtra Mantralay all officers & staff from all departments in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015.

Sachin Sharma

Sachin Sharma is an experienced Agri-Business professional with 17+ years of experience in Agribusiness Sector. An Alumnus of GB Pant University, PAU Ludhiana and MANAGE Hyderabad, he is currently working as General Manager & Head – Channel Operations at ITC limited.

Sachin is part of Agri-Business Leadership team, heading e-Choupal Channel, Commodity operations and Dairy Operations. He is also heading Rural Marketing & Agri Services verticals and anchoring new projects in areas of Horticulture (F&V), Medicinal plants, and digital agri-value chains.

He has been regional head for central & north India and also anchored new category development.

MBA from MANAGE, (Ministry of Agriculture) Hyderabad, Sachin has been the batch topper and Gold Medalist. He finished his MS from PAU Ludhiana, where he was awarded ICAR Research Fellowship and University Merit Award. A graduate in Agriculture from GB pant University, he was recipient of Chancellor’s and Vice-Chancellor Gold Medal for being Best All-round Student in University.

Sachin is a certified trainer and has been an internal trainer under Teach ABD program at ITC. Sachin has been an active member of various Industry bodies and regularly represents ITC at various external forums.

Arun Raste

Arun Raste is Executive Director at National Dairy Development Board (NDDB). Prior to joining NDDB, he has worked at prestigious organisations like IDFC Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank NABARD, ACC Cement and was heading IRFT, a non-profit organization in Mumbai. His areas of interest include- Corporate Planning, Business Strategy, CSR, Marketing Communication, BOP finance & NGO Management.

Raste is an eminent speaker and has presented his views at various International/National conferences including Toyo University in Japan, Murdoch University in Australia, Kinki University Japan etc. He also has to his credit over a dozen publication in National/International Journals.

Raste is also on board of some of the prestigious organizations such as IRMA, Anand, IIL, Hyderabad and Mother Dairy Delhi.

Venugopal Reddy

Mr. Venugopal Reddy an Indian Administrative Services (IAS) officer of the 1994 batch belonging to the Maharashtra cadre has graduated in Bachelor of Science (Agriculture) and Master in Genetics He has been recently appointed as the Principal Secretary (Industries), Industry, Energy and Labour Department. Prior to this he held the post of Principal Secretary (Forest), Revenue and Forest Department. In his career spanning more than 25 years he has served the State and the Country handling various positions. Some of the key profiles he held are Additional metropolitan commissioner, MMRDA, Secretary to the Governor of Maharashtra, Divisional commissioner of Nagpur. He had also officiated as Vice Chancellor of the Rashtra Sant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University, Nagpur for some time.

Carlos Rojas- Arbulú

Rojas-Arbulú has 20 years of international experience including 14 years as a manager; and has worked in 8 countries across 3 continents: Americas, Africa and Asia.

In Canada, he held the position of Senior Departmental Advisor to two Ministers of International Cooperation & La Francophonie (2015-2017); Director of the Environment Division (2014-2015); Deputy Director, Corporate Social Responsibility & National Contact Point for the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (2007- 2010); as well as positions in the Central America and Caribbean (2003-2005) and Mexico (2000-2003) divisions. As a diplomat, he was appointed Consul and Head of Trade & Investment at the Canadian Consulate General in Mumbai, India in August 2019; Head of Cooperation at the Canadian Embassy in Haiti (2017-2019); Regional Trade Program Leader at the Canadian Embassy in Senegal (2010-2014); Commercial Program Manager at the Canadian Embassy in Guatemala (2005-2007).

He has also had assignments in Mexico and Peru with the Canadian government and in Nicaragua with the Canadian private sector. Recognized as an effective communicator in French, English and Spanish (and beginners Portuguese), he is a committed, motivated individual with a strong work ethic. He has twice received the Deputy Ministers' Award of Excellence: Young Leaders (2010) and Policy and Program Development (2009), as well as other awards and recognition during his career.

By his willingness to federate actors, he was named President of the Concertation des Partenaires au développement within the international community of donors in Haiti (2018-2019). Mr. Rojas-Arbulú holds degrees from Concordia University and McGill University in Canada; he was born in Peru and immigrated to Canada at the age of 15. He is married to Mélanie Karina Monette (Sexologist and Psychotherapist) and they have three children.

Tej Paul Bhatla

Tej Bhatla is a Vice President at Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and heads Public Services (Government) Business Unit in India. Tej has been part of TCS and Tata Family for over 30 years. Most of his experience has been with either government clients or global marquee Banking and Financial Services institutions. TCS’ public services unit has delivered most of the mission critical projects for Government of India – both federal government as well as the governments in different provinces (states) in India.

Some of the notable federal projects where TCS is engaged in include Passport Seva Project, Aadhar Project, Customs and Excise management project, India Post Project and Aayushman Bharat project. For State Governments, TCS has delivered projects for Land and other land registration projects, value-added Tax and excise management projects, Financial Management and budgeting and Homeland Security (Crime & Criminal Tracking) projects.

Mohit Bhasin

Mohit is a Partner and Lead – Economic Development Advisory practice. He has over fifteen years of experience in leading and managing large government reform programmes. He provides advice to clients on matters related to job creation and economic reforms.

He has led several programmes of national priority (among the first-of-their-kind programmes) such as World Bank Global Ease of Doing Business (wherein India jumped 53 points); implementation of Trade Facilitation Agreement for Government of India; and Startup India. He has also anchored other national programmes which include the development and promotion of food processing sector for Ministry of Food Processing and Industry.

He has served as an advisor to Andhra Pradesh MedTech Zone (first-of- its-kind high end manufacturing zone in India); Vibrant Gujarat Global Investor Summit (first-of-its-kind of investor engagement platform in India); Advisor to Ministry of Textiles for the development of technical textiles sector (first-of-its-kind national level sector development programme in India); India strategy for UK Trade & Investment (now DIT); India-UK partnership programme on Ease of Doing Business.

Lim Boon Tiong

Lim Boon Tiong is currently the Chief Operating Officer overseeing business development and operations in ITE Education Services (ITEES), a subsidiary and consulting arm of the Institute of Technical Education (ITE), Singapore. Lim has more than 26 years of experience in the field of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET).

He spent the last 14 years championing TVET development in many countries such as India, Myanmar, Nigeria, Cambodia, Thailand, Philippines, China, Indonesia, Lao, Myanmar, Vietnam and Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Russia and Singapore. With a rich repertoire of knowledge in managing cross-border TVET projects, Mr Lim is wellversed with the development of TVET across Asia, Africa and Middle-East.

In 2003, Lim pioneered the setting up of ITEES and subsequently joined the company as a full-time General Manager in managing the entire operations of the company. He was instrumental in turning the company from one that was barely breaking even with few projects in Singapore into a thriving global consultancy company providing TVET solutions for manpower development.

Prior to joining ITEES, Lim was the Manager at ITE managing ITE’s collaborations with industry, government-to-government cooperation projects, industry-based training programmes and commercialisation of ITE’s intellectual properties.

In recognition of his achievements especially in extending the Singapore brand name in the global arena through TVET consultancy Lim was bestowed the Public Administration Medal (Bronze) in 2014 by the President of the Republic of Singapore.

Dr Ramesh Bhat

Dr. Ramesh Bhat joined the NMIMS University as Dean and Provost, School of Business Management in September 2017 and in March 2020 took over as the University's Officiating Vice-Chancellor. Before joining NMIMS, Dr. Bhat served as Professor of Finance at IIM, Ahmedabad, from 1986 to 2008 and 2014 to 2016, where he held various positions including Management Development Programs Chairperson.

From 2009 and 2014, he served as Executive Chairman of WOne Management Systems, a co-founded company. Dr. Bhat has served on adjunct and visiting faculty positions at ISB Hyderabad, the University of North Carolina at Chapel-Hill, IIM Udaipur, and worked at the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India and Shri Ram College of Commerce. Dr. Bhat served as an Advisor to the Ministry of Human Resource Development and has been a member of various committees of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Planning Commission.

Dr Bhat has worked on multiple long-term consulting assignments with the Abt Associates India, DFID New Delhi, Royal Netherlands Embassy India, and various short-term consulting projects with the USAID New Delhi, CDC India, ADB, European Commission, and the WHO. In addition to his current responsibilities, Dr. Bhat is currently a board member of Basic Healthcare, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the health of the last-mile population in rural areas. He has served as an independent director at National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC), BEML, ITI Ltd, Corporation Bank, Ahmedabad Stock Exchange, and various other companies in India.

Sujata Saunik

Sujata Saunik is an Indian Administrative Service officer, 1987 batch, and currently is the Additional Chief Secretary at Skill development and Entrepreneurship department. She is the former 2017-2018 Takemi Fellow in Global Health and Population at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, Harvard University.

She served as Advisor and Joint Secretary, National Disaster Management Authority, Ministry of Home Affairs, Govt. of India for four years handling a range of responsibilities including setting the agenda for high-level meetings with the Prime Minister and Chairman of the Authority and the Advisory Board.

She was on deputation to the UN mission in Kosovo from 2000-2005 and worked as Municipal Administrator of the second largest town in Kosovo-Prizren, heading an international team of officers from various countries to help in the reconstruction and rehabilitation efforts in this war-torn province of ex- Yugoslavia.

She was also on deputation to the UN mission in Cambodia for one year from June 1992 to July 1993 to help in voter registration and conduct of the first democratic elections in Cambodia [Kampuchea], South East Asia.

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