Executive Committee

Dr. Yogesh Kumar

Dr. Yogesh Kumar completed his Ph.D. from the Giri Institute of Development Studies, Lucknow as an ICSSR Doctoral Fellow in Development Economics in 1990. Dr. Kumar is the founder member and Executive Director of “Samarthan – Centre for Development Support” working in the states of Madhya Pradesh and Chattisgarh. He has an experience of more than 25 years in the development sector and is a professional of international repute on the issue of participatory governance and development.
Dr. Kumar has active engagement in local governance, accountability and transparency discourses with expertise in participatory planning, social audits, citizens report card, community score cards etc. He facilitated emergence of a network of elected representatives of Panchayati Raj Institutions in Madhya Pradesh.



Jagadananda presently leads the Centre for Youth and Social Development (CYSD). He demitted the office as the State Information Commissioner, Odisha to advance the Right to Information (RTI) agenda in the State in August 2013 and was a member of the State Planning Board of Odisha, following his active campaigning for people-centric decentralized planning. He is also the President of the National Social Watch (NSW). In 2008, he was a Member of the Committee on State Agrarian Relations and the Unfinished Task in Land Reforms.

josantony joseph


Josantony Joseph is an international trainer on capacity building, strategic planning, and team building programs for various NGOs and INGOs, mainly on social advocacy, human rights training programs, leadership programmes for both national and international groups including ActionAid South Asia, TROCAIRE Ireland, WelthungerHilfe Germany, National Centre for Advocacy Studies (NCAS India) etc.
He is one of the founding members of NCAS and assisted the organisation in streamlining their administrative, financial, and program functioning on many levels. Presently, he is the training consultant for NCAS and an esteemed member of the executive board of the organisation.
Formerly to become a full-time trainer and a resource person, Josantony held many important positions at senior management levels both in India and abroad in organisations like Asia Partnership for Human Development, Hong Kong as the Executive Secretary (CEO), Former Advisor (Maharashtra) to the Commissioner appointed by the Supreme Court in connection with the Right To Food PIL, Director, West Zone, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan. Ministry of HRD, Govt. of India to name a few.

Being not limited to a successful career as a resource person on rights-based advocacy, for organisations like Oxfam India, UNICEF, Water Aid etc for more than 38 years now, he has published many papers in periodicals and co-authored many books. His work in FOOD published in Ireland on ethical issues connected with food security, COMBATING POVERTY IN A MARKET-DRIVEN WORLD, research study named LOOKING BACK, LOOKING FORWARD commissioned by the United Nations Population Fund, New Delhi, on “missing girls’ in India, are worth noteworthy.

A graduate from University of Mumbai, Josantony holds a bachelor’s degree in English, bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from Pune & Rome, Masters of Divinity from Chicago, USA and diplomas in Mass Media, Counselling, Marathi Visharad etc from both India and USA

Dr sampat Kale

Dr. Sampat Kale is an assistant professor at the School of Rural Development with Tata Institute of Social Science, Tuljapur in Sustainable Livelihoods and Natural Resources Governance (SLNG) and chairs the social protection office of TISS, Tuljapur. He is a Life Member of the Indian Sociological Society and the Marathi Samajshastra Parishad.
Prior to this, he has worked with National Centre for Advocacy Studies (NCAS) as a …….. for ….years. He is also a member of International Sociological Association, Madrid, Spain and was a supervising faculty for Prime Minister’s Rural Development Fellows (PMRDF), Government of India in 2012-15 among other notable accomplishments.
Dr. Kale has written more than two dozen of articles, several books and some papers in national and international journals with special focus on sociology of marginal groups, rural development, social movements, people-centred advocacy, human rights and social justice, local self-governance among others. He has presented his work at various conferences and seminars at national level. Most noteworthy in this endless list are the University of Gavle, Sweden, World Congress of Sociology, Toronto, Canada & PVTG in Maharashtra with SRD-TISS & UNDP.

Dr. Sampat achieved his Master’s degree and PhD in Sociology from University of Pune. He has visited Karachi-Pakistan, Stockholm-Sweden and presented papers as well.

Bhanvar singh chandana

In 1995 Bhanwarji initiated a movement for rights on forestland in Udaipur region of South Rajasthan. 25000 tribals have been associated with this movement and have been continuously struggling since 1977 for entitlements of rights (food, land, health, education) . He has served the community by organizing them on issues of livelihood, justice, survival and the right to live with dignity. Special focus of his work has been lobbying, advocacy, networking, planning of issue based campaigns, promoting collective leadership.

Asha Ramesh

Asha Ramesh is a gender and development activist. She has held a number of prestigious positions, such as Director, Policy and Partnerships with WaterAid, Senior Programme Officer Christian Aid, New Delhi, Director- Rights Based Programmes, Centre for World Solidarity, Hyderabad and Research Associate, National Institute of Advanced Studies, a premier Research Institution in Bangalore. She was the National Co-ordinator for National Alliance of Women (NAWO), New Delhi.



Keerti is the Country Director at Caritas Suisse, based in Patna, Bihar. Formerly, she was the State Programme Coordinator of Mahila Samakhya, Bihar. She is a women and Dalit rights activist, development professional and trainer and has been involved in advocacy, research and training on a wide range of socio-legal issues.

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