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Iravati Damle joins Zoom to lead public policy in India

She will be heading policy strategy, government affairs and advocacy for India.

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MUMBAI: Zoom has hired Iravati Damle as head of public policy in India. In her new role, she will lead policy strategy, government affairs and advocacy for India.

Damle will be reporting to Jonathan Kallmer, head of global public policy and government relations at Zoom. She will be based out of India.

Before joining Zoom, Damle worked with Uber for more than three years as public policy manager (Central US) during which she oversaw regulatory and policy strategy and advocacy for the rideshare app in the Midwest.

“I am thrilled to be at Zoom at a time when the business and the policy environment it operates in are so dynamic, with so much at stake for the productivity of businesses and the happiness of people,” Damle said in a post on LinkedIn.

Prior to that, she was head of public policy (West India, East India & Bangladesh) at Uber between November 2018-January 2020. She used to look after secured licences or favourable regulations in five Indian states and in Bangladesh, legitimizing and stabilizing Uber’s business through sustained engagement and negotiation.

She has also worked as a consultant at the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy. As part of the core team, she contributed in developing research and legislative proposals for the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India on network neutrality.

While working with MP Baijayant ‘Jay’ Panda’s office, Damle designed campaign strategy for general elections in Kendrapara, Odisha in 2014. She also led a team producing legislative proposals on themes such as electoral reform and free speech, introduced in Parliament by the MP.

Zoom had a meteoric rise following the onset of the Covid2019 pandemic, with the service being adopted across sectors for online classes, meetings and remote hosting. However, the videoconferencing service has had a rough few months thanks to concerns surrounding the privacy of its service. In India, Zoom has been the subject of government advisories advising against its use, and a petition was filed in the Supreme Court accusing it of being a risk to national security.

Recently, Zoom rolled out a major new security upgrade for users: end-to-end encryption. But the extra protection against hackers won’t be offered by default, meaning users will have to take several steps to turn it on.

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