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Board of Advisors

Mr. Romesh Bhattacharji

Former Narcotics Commissioner Government of India

Mr. Bhattacharji was the Narcotics Commissioner of India. He played an active role in the formulation and implementation of the national narcotic policy, supervision of legal poppy cultivation in India and detection/destruction of illicit opium poppy cultivation. A freelance writer, he has authored numerous articles on narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, security, insurgency, narcotics, and tourism. He has also authored a book on the insurgency-affected north-eastern region of India. He has worked in Afghanistan as a consultant for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime on Afghanistan’s opium crisis and has conducted extensive field research in the farming communities of Afghanistan.

Prof. Aditya Purohit

Former Vice-Chancellor HNB Garhwal University

Prof. Purohit is an Indian scientist and professor whose principle work involves ecophysiology of tree species and physiology of high altitude medicinal plants. He is also the member of the editorial board for the Journal of Sustainable Forestry.

Besides being a member of several National Committees, Prof. Purohit was the member of the Expert Group constituted by Planning Commission, Govt. of India to formulate the National Policy for Development of the Himalayan Region. He was instrumental in preparing the Action Plan for the Himalayan Region. As recognition to his significant contribution to science and academic achievements, the President of India conferred on him the prestigious Padma Shri in 1997.

Dr. Suman Sahai

Founder & Chairperson Gene Campaign

Dr. Sahai, with a distinguished scientific career in the field of genetics, is a recipient of the Padma Shri, the Borlaug Award, Outstanding Woman Achiever awards, the Birbal Sahni Gold Medal and the Order of the Golden Ark.

Dr. Sahai is founder Chairperson of the Gene Campaign which is a leading research and advocacy organization working on issues relating to food, nutrition and livelihoods. Dr. Sahai chaired India’s Planning Commission Task Force on ‘Agrobiodiversity and Genetically Engineered Organisms’, for the XIth Plan. She was a member of the Steering Committee of the National Biodiversity Board, the Expert Committee on Biotechnology Policy and the Bioethics Committee of the Indian Council of Medical Research..

Dr. Arno Hazekamp

Medical Cannabis Chemistry Expert

Dr. Hazekamp is a Dutch scientist, who’s been a staunch supporter of a science-based approach to the medicinal use of cannabis in the Netherlands and abroad. He has been involved in numerous projects regarding quality control, product development and basic research on medicinal cannabis. He participated in the medicinal cannabis program of the Dutch Health Ministry. He has previously been the Head of Research and Development of Bedrocan BV and now works closely in the preparation of clinical trials for medicinal cannabis for a variety of organizations globally.

Mr. Ganesh Prasad

Senior Partner, Khaitan & Co.

Mr. Prasad is a corporate lawyer and member of the corporate and commercial law team. He specialises in domestic and foreign venture capital and private equity investments in a variety of sectors. He has also assisted several start-ups, growth stage companies, as well as public listed companies in receiving financial and strategic investments.

Captain Raghu Raman

Group President- Risk, Security & New Ventures at Reliance Industries, Founding CEO-NATGRID

Capt. Raman has served in the Indian Armed Forces for eleven years, followed by another eleven years in the corporate sector before joining the Government as CEO of the National Intelligence Grid. After his exit from the Indian Army, he acceded to the Mahindra Group in 1998 and helped set up Mahindra United World College.

He has led various companies like Mahindra First Choice, Mahindra SSG and finally DLSI, a Mahindra joint venture with British Aerospace before being handpicked to found and lead the National Intelligence Grid, Ministry of Home Affairs in the Government of India.

At present, he serves as the Group President (Risk, Security and New Ventures) of Reliance Industries Limited, bringing technology and industry leadership, security expertise and executive management experience to his role with the company.

Mr. John Hardy

Founder The Green School

In 2007, Mr. Hardy retreated from the corporate world to dedicate his time to building a more sustainable world through education and design. As his first major project, he and his wife Cynthia conceived and created the Green School in Bali. He spoke at TED Global about the Green School, and the USGBC awarded the school with the 2012 Greenest School on Earth award. In 2009, he teamed up with his daughter Elora to create award-winning Green Village and Ibuku.

Dr. Ravi Bhushan Singh

Agriculture Specialist Former CEO-Bharat Renewable Energy Ltd.

Dr. Bhushan is an agriculture specialist and agri-business professional with 34 years of experience in the sector. He managed the Bharat Renewable Energy Limited, as CEO of JV, promoted by Bharat Petroleum, to build and operate a bioenergy value chain. After that, he took voluntary retirement and started working as an independent professional for agriculture, agri-business, rural and farmer development facilitator.

He has worked as the Commercial Director for CABI (Erstwhile Commonwealth Agriculture Bureau International) and leads the knowledge management part of the largest ICT-based agro-advisory project in India. As founding COO for Digital Green, an ICT-based program with the goal of increasing agro-extension efficiency, he led the strategic model development and implementation of it to impart education, training, and skill development for farm and non-farm activities in public and private environment.

Dr. Shreekumar Menon

Head - Centre for Narcotics & Psychotropic Substances Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Former Director General at the National Academy of Customs, Excise & Narcotics (NACEN)

Dr. G. Shreekumar Menon has served 37 years as a distinguished officer of the Indian Revenue Service (IRS), which is an elite administrative cadre of the federal government of India. In the course of his career spanning nearly four decades, he steadily rose through the ranks and retired as Director General at the National Academy of Customs, Excise & Narcotics (NACEN), Faridabad and Director General, Multi-Disciplinary School of Economic Intelligence, Mumbai. He has also served in different capacities like Assistant Commissioner/ Deputy Commissioner / Joint Commissioner / Additional Commissioner / Commissioner at various cities of India, like Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Mangalore, Patna, Guwahati, Shillong and Goa.

Dr. Menon’s academic track record includes M. A. and culminated with a Ph. D. degree in Narcotics and Psychotropic Substances from Mangalore University.

Post retirement from public service, he has served as the Registrar of Yenepoya(Deemed to be University), a leading private university based at Mangalore, India, which runs medical college, a dental college, an engineering institute and several institutions in other professional streams. Presently, He is the Head of the Centre for Narcotics & Psychotropic Substances, at Manipal Academy of Higher Education.

Dr. David Taylor

Professor of International Relations and Public Policy – Swansea University, Founding Director of the Global Drug Policy Observatory (2013).

David Taylor is a Professor of International Relations and Public Policy and founding Director of the Global Drug Policy Observatory (2013). He was appointed as a lecturer at Swansea University in 2000 and since then has been visiting faculty at universities in the US, Australia, Hungary, India and Hong Kong.

David has been researching aspects of drug policy for over 25 years with his main areas of interest being the UN and international drug policy and more recently the shifts in legislative attitudes towards cannabis, including the transitioning of illicit cultivation in the so-called Global South towards engagement with the burgeoning licit markets for medicinal use.

He has written two major research monographs - The United States and International Drug Control, 1909-1997 (Pinter, 1999 & Continuum, 2001) and International Drug Control: Consensus Fractured (Cambridge University Press, 2012)

David was the founding Secretary of the International Society for the Study of Drug Policy (2006-7) and is currently on the Editorial Boards of The International Journal of Drug Policy and the International Journal on Human Rights and Drug Policy. He is also a member of the International Advisory Board of the David F. Musto Center for Drug Policy Studies (Shanghai University) and a technical advisor to the Centre on Drug Policy Evaluation (St Michael’s Hospital, Toronto).