Pratham India Management Team
Pratham Programme Directors
Pratham CEO, Co-Founder, Trustee
Director — Programmes, Pratham
Madhav taught Chemistry at the University of Houston and the University of Mumbai before getting involved with adult literacy in the National Literacy Mission in the slums of Mumbai, in 1989. He was instrumental in building the concept of a ‘societal mission’ for universal primary education through Pratham. As CEO of the Pratham Education Foundation, Madhav remains central to the functioning of the Pratham network. In 2004, he was invited to become a member of the now dissolved National Advisory Council of the Prime Minister, which was Chaired by Mrs. Sonia Gandhi, to help the implementation and monitoring of the National Common Minimum Programme of the UPA Government (2004–2008). He is also a member of the Governing Council of the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan Mission of the Government of India and has been a member of four half-yearly Joint Review Missions of SSA over the past two years.
Co-Founder, Trustee and Executive Secretary
Pratham Mumbai Education Initiative
Programme Head — Mumbai & Pratham Council for Vulnerable Children
M.S.W., M. Phil.
Farida has 25 years of experience in Mumbai as an educationalist and social worker. She co-founded Pratham and is responsible for the programmes in Mumbai and Gujarat as well as the ‘Child at Risk’ nationally. In addition to her work at Pratham, she is the Vice Principal of Nirmala Niketan College of Social Work in Mumbai. She serves on the Government of India Committee on Child Labour and on research in education. She has recently been nominated as a member of the National Advisory Committee, under the Child Labour Prohibition and Regulation Act 1986. She is on the national level grant in aid committee for Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) as well as the state committee for education for SSA. In addition, she is on the Board of Studies and Academic Bodies of Mumbai University. She is a member of the Sachar Committee to decide policy issues regarding the minority Muslim community and the inspection and monitoring panel of Mumbai Urban Transport Project (under MMRDA) to
assess rehabilitation processes for project affected persons. She has recently been awarded ‘Woman Achiever’ by Times India Foundation and Hindustan Times, and ‘Professional Social Worker’ by Society for Social Justice for her work on eradication of child labour in Mumbai. She has been invited to the University of Sierre, Switzerland to hold a workshop for international students regarding issues related to children in the Indian context.
Programme Head — U.P., Bihar, Jharkand, Assam, Meghalaya
Head — ASER Centre
Initially trained as an economist in India, Rukmini was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University and completed her Ph.D at the University of Chicago. She did her post doctoral work at the Population Research Centre at the University of Chicago and later worked as a programme officer at the Spencer Foundation before returning to India in 1996. Currently, Rukmini is responsible for Pratham’s work in several major states in North India. She is also a lead member of the team that conducts ASER (Annual Status of Education Report). ASER is the largest annual study ever conducted by Indian citizens to monitor the status of elementary education in the country. In 2007, through this citizens’ audit, over 700,000 children were reached in 567 out of 575 of India’s rural districts (The ASER reports are available at www.pratham.org). In the three years since it was initiated, the ASER effort has been widely recognised for its innovative use of citizens’ participation in understanding and improving the delivery of basic services.
Programme Head — Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh (M.P.), Chattisgarh, Orissa,
Andhra Pradesh (A.P.), Programme Content Development
Usha is an activist earlier involved with Yuva Shakti Pratishthan*(YSP) who has been with Pratham since 1996. Apart from the five state programmes she is overseeing, she also heads the programme content development group. She has been instrumental in the large scale and exemplary work done in M.P. Chattisgarh and Maharashtra, which is one of Pratham’s oldest programmes. Usha is known for her close contact with the grassroots work and ability to develop programmes based on day-to-day experiences.
* Yuva Shakti Pratishthan – Organisation working on increasing economic self sufficiency in women.