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Sunday 22nd May 2016
Royal Festival Hall


Nihal Arthanayake
Radio & TV Presenter, BBC Asian Network

Nihal has been living for music since he started promoting rap shows in his native Essex and since then he has been a music journalist, PR and manager. In October 2002 Nihal joined BBC Radio1 where he was a regular for the past decade. In May 2004, he launched his own club night, Bombay Bronx, to showcase his love of rap music and Asian beats. Since its creation, Bombay Bronx has seen some of the biggest artists in the scene perform live as well as given a platform to a huge number of unsigned artists. As well as DJing at his own club night, Nihal has DJ'd the Isle Of Wight Festival, Glastonbury, NH7 in Pune, India, Womad in Singapore, and has been asked to be the creative director of a brand new festival called Electric Peacock in Sri Lanka.

Jennifer Jaffrey

After nearly fifty years in the film business, Jennifer Jaffrey has garnered a wealth of experience and a network of worldwide contacts, which have been invaluable in her support of numerous charities. Following 18 years in radio and television production at the BBC in London, Jennifer embarked on a career as a freelance casting director in India, working on international feature films such as Ismail Merchant's Perfect Murder and The Deceivers. While living in India, she also set up an advisory service for foreign film-makers. Returning to the UK in 1989, Jennifer continued to work as a casting director. Then in 1993, she established her own personal management company - Magnolia Management. Her select list of highly talented actors of various nationalities included her internationally acclaimed late husband - Saeed Jaffrey OBE. She also discovered the talent and established the careers of many actors both in the UK and in India, including Ayesha Dharker, Hannah Waterman, Indira Joshi and Nitin Ganatra.

In 2004, Jennifer moved to a suite of offices at Pinewood Film Studios and set up Jaffrey Management Ltd. She has now resigned as managing director and is developing feature film projects with her company Jaffrey Productions Ltd.

Louise Jury

Louise Jury is the Director of Communications and Strategy for the Creative Industries Federation, the membership body for all of the UK’s arts, creative industries and cultural education. She was formerly Chief Arts Correspondent of the London Evening Standard and both Arts and Media Correspondent for The Independent and Independent on Sunday, having previously covered a range of issues from Third World debt to Nazi gold on a string of national titles.She is on the board of the Baileys Prize for Women’s Fiction. Louise grew up in the West Country, attended a comprehensive, studied English at Trinity College, Oxford, and a postgraduate diploma in journalism at the University of Wales in Cardiff.

Shaheen Khan

Shaheen Khan is one of Britain's best known actresses.Theatre credits includes: Free Outgoing (Royal Court Theatre), Rafta Rafta (National Theatre), Strictly Dand​ia​ (Lyric Hammersmith), Midnight’s Children (RSC), A Tainted Dawn (Tamasha) The Little Clay Cart, Chilli In Your Eyes, Macbeth (Tara Arts). TV includes: Casualty, Sister Wife, Lovematch, Old Flames, Holby City, (BBC) Partition(C4) My Life as a Popat (CITV) Film includes Rafta Rafta, Bend it like Beckham, You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, Tomorrow Never Dies, Hollow Reed, Bhaji on the Beach, Sammy and Rosie get Laid. Daytimer, Inside. Co written with Sudha Bhuchar includes: Girlies(R4), Balti Kings (Tamasha) House Across the Street (BBC2)

Dr MN Nandakumara

Dr MN Nandakumara is the executive director of the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan in Britain. Under his leadership the bhavan has organised events relating to Indian art and culture, including music and dance performances by famous artists as well as seminars on religious topics and lectures by visiting scholars.

He has overseen the development of a new art gallery at the bhavan as well as the renovation of the centre's main 295-seat auditorium.

Dr Nandakumara has taught Sanskrit at Cambridge University and regularly lectures on Indian art, culture and philosophy at various schools, including Eton College. He has lectures on Indian epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata and the Bhagvad Gita in schools and colleges across the UK.

He instituted a music degree course at the bhavan, which is run in association with Trinity College Music and validated by City University, London.

He has worked at the India Office Library cataloguing Indian books and helped to decipher old manuscripts.

Guy Fletcher OBE, Hon DLitt, FRSA

Guy Fletcher has been a respected songwriter since the sixties. Recordings of his songs by Elvis Presley, Cliff Richard, Ray Charles, Frankie Valli, Joe Cocker and many other international stars have ensured Guy's place in British pop history. Behind the scenes, he has worked for many years for the UK copyright community including more than a decade as Chairman of The British Academy of Composers and Songwriters where he led many campaigns against the erosion of composers' rights. He continues to be a highly respected voice internationally and tirelessly champions the cause of the creator in his role as Chairman of the Performing Right Society. He received an OBE for services to British Music in the 2005 Queen's birthday honours list.

Sailesh Ram

Sailesh Ram, a former editor of Eastern Eye, is the founder and editor of , a website dedicated to coverage of the Asian arts scene in its many guises. A journalist by background, whose work has been published in the Independent and Observer, he is also a contributing editor to AMG's Power List and Asian Rich List.

He also writes creatively, having had a novel for teenagers published many years ago, he now has several TV and film projects bubbling away. He set up to showcase and platform the best of Asian creativity in the West.

Amit Roy

Amit Roy is one of the most experienced journalists to have covered the Asian community and writes an influential column in Eastern Eye. He has also worked as a foreign correspondent for the Daily Telegraph, the Daily Mail, The Sunday Times and the Sunday Telegraph.

Amit has covered wars all over the world, as well as the Iranian revolution. He has also written economic reports on India for the Daily Telegraph.

Kalpesh R Solanki

Kalpesh is group managing editor of the Asian Media & Marketing Group (AMG). Kalpesh graduated with a law degree (LLB Hons) from Queen Mary College, London, and qualified as a barrister from the Inner Temple. Kalpesh is responsible for the strategy and growth of AMG operations over three continents USA, UK and India.

AMG provides route to market services with specific focus on the Asian community.

Shailesh R Solanki

Shailesh is executive editor for AMG, he has over 25 years' experience in journalism and oversees a raft of titles, including Asian Trader, Pharmacy Business, Asian Hospitality and AAHOA Lodging Business, as well as GG2,, Eastern Eye and

As economics graduate, he has chronicled the Asian community in the UK and the UK where the group publish from their base in Atlanta, Georgia.

Ritula Shah

Ritula Shah is an award winning BBC journalist and broadcaster. She is currently the main presenter of the World Tonight, Radio 4’s main evening news programme, which has a focus on international affairs. She's presented the programme from countries including Brazil, Jordan, India, China, the US, Finland and Germany. She's also regularly presented Woman's Hour, PM and Any Questions on Radio 4 and has made a number or documentaries and series for the station. Ritula was the launch presenter of the World Today, a daily news programme on the BBC World Service and spent a decade reporting for and presenting for the network. Ritula has chaired events on international issues at a number of think tanks and universities, including Chatham House, Carnegie Tsinghua Centre, the Asia Society and Kings College London. She's a trustee of the International Institute for the Visual Arts and an ambassador for the British Asian Trust.