Technocrat Mahajan is new Secretary and CEO of Rajiv Gandhi Foundation

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Vijay Mahajan

By Muslim Mirror Special Correspondent,

New Delhi: Rajiv Gandhi Foundation has appointed Vijay Mahajan as Secretary and Chief Executive Officer of RGF and Director of Rajiv Gandhi Institute for Contemporary Studies who is well-known internationally as a rural development professional focusing on inclusion.

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RGF, a charitable trust founded in 1991, was set up to realize the vision of Rajiv Gandhi: a modern India, ‘secular, and progressive’; a country that enshrines the democratic principle of equality with an educated people free of prejudice; where women participate as equals; a nation with the space and will to empower all citizens, especially the underprivileged. RGICS is an independent national policy think tank promoted by the RGF. RGICS carries out research and policy development on contemporary challenges facing India.

Mahajan is a leading social entrepreneur. In 1982 he founded PRADAN, an NGO which motivates young professionals to work at the grassroots to promote livelihoods of the poor. PRADAN has since then worked with over half a million very poor households, mainly in tribal areas of India. In 1991 Mr. Mahajan founded the Basix Social Enterprise Group, which has supported three million poor households through microfinance and livelihood promotion services. He retired from Basix in 2016. Mr. Mahajan was named among “60 outstanding social entrepreneurs of the world” at the World Economic Forum, Davos in 2003. He served on the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (2005-10); the Rangarajan Committee on Financial Inclusion 2007-08; the Raghuram Rajan Committee on Financial Sector Reforms 2008- 09; several Working Groups of the XIth and XIIth Five Year Plans, and as Chair of the World Bank’s Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP), 2011-13.

Mahajan has published over 20 papers in Indian and international journals and authored over 70 articles/papers for professional audiences. He serves as an Advisor/Board Member of various developmental NGOs, social enterprises and financial institutions focused on inclusion.

He is an alumnus of the IIT, Delhi (B. Tech, 1975), and IIM, Ahmedabad (1981), from where he got his MBA with a Gold Medal. He was a mid-career Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University.

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