The jury for the Indian Telly Awards 2003

MUMBAI: The winners of the Indian Telly Awards 2003 will be decided through a process of judging and polling. The judging will be done by eminent juries - three to be exact: technical, popular and life time contribution - consisting of professionals who have excelled in entertainment (more specifically television) or its coverage in print.

The brief profiles of the jury for the Indian Telly Awards 2003 are given below:

Ace ad man A.G.Krishnamurthy founded Mudra Communications as its Chairman and MD in 1980. He set up Mudra Institute of Communications (MICA) in Ahmedabad and also Mudra International. The agency has over the past 22 years received 844 awards. In 2002, he was inducted into the 2002-2003 edition of International Who's Who of professionals. Retired from Mudra in March 2003, he is currently the chairman of AGK Brand Consulting.

Sabira Merchant completed her studies in Liberal Arts from Switzerland. Being a expert communicator and a lover of stage, Sabira was inclined towards the theatre and made her first breakthrough with Theatre group's The World and it was followed by The Wild Duck, Tughlaq, Winter Set etc. She bagged the All India critics award for her role of Blanche Dubois in the play A Street Car Named Desire. She also played the enchantress Madame Manaeksha in the BBC production Six steps to happiness. She debuted in The Rummy Game, a sweet and bitter comedy that won rave reviews from all over the world. Sabira is an expert guide on speech, diction, etiquette, grooming, stage presence and public speaking. She has trained a whole lot of beauty contestants including Lara Dutta, Diana Hayden, Priyanka Chopra etc.

Rathikant Basu is the promoter of Broadcast Worldwide Pvt Ltd, having a quality regional channel, TARA Bangla which is widely available in West Bengal and Bangladesh. He has been singularly responsible for revolutionising television viewing in India with innovative and quality programming as Doordarshan's director general and as Star TV India's CEO and Executive Chairman.

Doordarshan's sister channel, the hugely successful DD Metro was conceptualised and launched by him. At Star TV, Basu changed the face of satellite television in India from a foreign medium to a friendlier Indian avatar in the form of Star Plus. Star News was conceived and launched by Basu. As Newscorp's 'senior most official' in the sub-continent, Basu has been responsible for all of Star TV and News Corporation's business activities throughout the region.

Dharam Gulati graduated from the Film and Television Institute of India in 1983 with a specialisation in cinematography. Since then he has been working as a cinematographer in the Mumbai film industry. His first feature film called Goonj was the nominated for Filmfare awards in the category of the Best critics award. His second film Rudali won three National awards. Recently he photographed an English film The Perfect Husband which is directed by Priya Paul Singh and was shown in Cannes film festival this year (2003). Apart from all this he has also done a lot of TV serials, ads and corporate films. On television he has done serials like Kismat, Gaatha, Ab Aayega Mazaa, Gadbad Gudde, Capt. Vyom. One of his public service film Anti Dog Killing has won the IAFA Award. His documentary Benefit for whom at whose cost? has got the National Award for the Best Environmental Film.

Kiran Joneja started her acting career with an Indo-Italian co-production film Shahleen and also acted in films like Amba, Prerna, Akayla etc. A prominent face on television; she did serials like Buniyaad, Mahabharat, Ye Jo Jindagi Hai and Mouth full of Sky. Under the guidance of her director husband Ramesh Sippy, Kiran learnt various aspects of film making. She formed her company Kiran Chitra Enterprises in 1992. She recently wrote, produced and directed a telefilm Antarwand for DD-I. She also produced, directed and hosted a talk show called the Kiran Joneja Show for Star Plus and Faasle for DD News Channel.

Vivek Agnihotri is a communications graduate from India Institute of Mass Communication. After studying business at Harvard University, he was with ad agencies such as O&M and McCann. He followed this by creating his own communications consulting firm, OffBeat, in Delhi. Agnihotri started with television by developing the hit Yeh Kahan Aa Gaye Hum, Saturday Suspense, X-Zone, Rishtey. In addition, he has also made two films: Sikander & Chocolate. He is a writer, director and editor. He is a visiting professor at IIMC.

Lekh Tandon ace director of blockbuster films like Amrapali, Agar Tum Na Hote and Prince, he made his directorial debut in 1961 with Professor which was a runaway hit. A string of hits like Dulhan Wohi Jo Piya Man Bhaye, Khuda Kasam subsequently followed. He plunged into directing serials after a while his serial Phir Wahi Talaash got the President's Best Serial of the year award. His latest serial Yaarana is due to telecast soon.

Businessworld magazine's senior editor Vanita Kohli-Khandekar has been writing in the media on and off for the last 10 years and full time for the last three years. She joined A&M as a correspondent in 1992 and left as chief of the Mumbai bureau in 1997. She has written on information technology and strategy before moving to media writing. In 2000 she was selected for a fellowship to Cambridge University where she researched the issue of copyrights in digital music. Her recently completed book on the Indian media Business will be out in October 2003. She is currently working on a book on India's media barons.

McCann Erickson's national creative director and executive VP Prasoon Joshi is one India's top advertising professionals. In a span of 11 years he has won accolades for his ingenious campaigns. With more than 100 National and International Advertising Awards in his kitty, his recent victory was at the most acclaimed International Festival at Cannes where two of his ads for Coca Cola won him the Gold Lion. He has also composed and sung many songs and advertising jingles.

Actor Kanwaljit Singh is a graduate from the Film and Television Institute of Pune. He has worked in Hindi films like Maachis and Satte Pe Satta. He has in his career worked with prominent directors like Gulzar, Romu Sippy, Lekh Tandon, Vijay Anand etc. He has won several awards for his performance in serials like Buniyaad, Daraar, Andaz and Saans. Some of the awards he has won for the best actor category are Rajiv Gandhi Excellence Award '96, the Uptron Awards for TV for great TV performances, Film Goer's Awards '96 and Indian Television Academy award 2001 for the serial Saans.

Shailaja Bajpai has been a journalist since 1984. She joined Indian Express in 1988 and became its media critic in 1992. A short break saw her as deputy editor of a weekly TV magazine which was launched by the Living Media - TV Today group. She is now contributing editor to The Indian Express and also a media critic. Her weekly column, Telescope appears every Monday on the Express.

Bennett Coleman & Co. president Arun Arora has been in the media for more than 30 years. He started his career as a senior management trainee in The Hindustan Times in Delhi. He was designated as the business manager in one of their important publishing subsidiaries when he joined The Times of India Group. Arora is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Bennett Coleman & Co. He is additionally the CEO of The Economic Times and Times Entertainment. He was with Sony for a year and he launched Sony Entertainment Television as their CEO before he was wooed back by the Times Group.

Javed Sayyed has done a Diploma in Cinema Editing from the Film & Television Institute of India in 1971. He has won the Maharashtra State Best Editing Awards for a Marathi feature film Reshamgathi and the Uptron TV Awards for Best Editing of the serial Wagle Ki Duniya. He has worked as a film editor for Hindi movies like Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman, Yes Boss, Pehela Nasha and Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani. He has also directed serials like Heena, Kaise Kahoon etc. He is presently directing a serial Kagaz Ki Kashti which airs on Sahara. Sayyed has worked as a video editor for serials like Nukkad, Sunil Gawaskar Presents, Circus, Surabhi, etc.

Shanta Gokhale is an adept writer, translator, journalist and theater critic. Her novel Rita Welinkar in Marathi, won the Maharahstra State awards in 1992. Of her three Marathi plays, Avinash has been published in English and performed in Marathi, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, English and Assamese. She has authored a critical history of Marathi theater entitled Playwright at the Center: Marathi drama from 1843 to the present. She has also written several scripts for documentary and feature films for director Arun Khopkar. Many of them have won National Awards and featured in the Panorama section of the International Film Festival of India.

Ravi Rai came to Mumbai in 1982. In 1986 he started working as an assistant director to Mahesh Bhatt. For 3 years he worked as his assistant on various projects such as Kaash, Naam, Jurm, Gunaah etc. He learnt the basic skills of writing and direction from his mentor and in 1989 he branched out on his own to direct a film Do Pal. His foray into television started in the year 1992 with Imtihan on Doordarshan which was a mega hit. He produced, wrote and directed Sailaab, Thoda Hai Thode Ki Zaroorat Hai, Sparsh, Thoda Sa Gham Thodi Khushi etc. His involvement in all of them was as a producer and writer, barring a few which he also directed. His 3 companies are into production of television content and also aim at setting up complete post production studios and shooting floors.

Rakesh Sharma is a distinguished documentary maker and his documentary Aftershocks -The Rough Guide to Democracy has won many awards, including the prestigious 'Le Prix de la Presse politique award' for the best documentary film at the 16th Fribourg International film festival in Switzerland. It was also invited to film festivals all over the world. He has won awards like the Robert Flaherty prize, Pennsylvania film festival (2002), John Michael's memorial award for best documentary, Big Muddy film fest (USA 2002), Best Documentary (feature) and many more.

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