Category Archives: Professionals

Fortune India’s 2019 List of Most Powerful Women in Business

Every year, the prestigious ‘Fortune India MPW (Most Powerful Women) Summit’ celebrates India’s foremost women executives and entrepreneurs, alongside discussions of ideas and issues related to gender, women in the workplace, the economy, and the society at large. This year, the Fortune India MPW (Most Powerful Women) Summit was held in Mumbai on 8th November, 2019, and recognized the excellence of three extraordinary Zoroastrian women – Zarin Daruwala – CEO, Standard Chartered Bank (India); Nisaba Godrej, Executive Chairperson, Godrej Consumer Products; and Meher Pudumjee – Chairperson, Thermax – amongst India’s foremost fifty women, who made it to Fortune India’s 2019 Annual ranking of the most powerful women in business who are making an impact by virtue of their business acumen and social and cultural influence.

“In a country where women are still up against several socio-economic challenges, the 50 women who make our 2019 MPW list are examples of how determination, drive, creativity, and compassion can make a potent recipe for success. These women have proven themselves to be role models in diverse fields, charting out their own paths and, in the process, shattering the glass ceiling. As they do so, they are bound to inspire millions of other women—who are battling their own surroundings across the length and breadth of the country—to follow their path and realise their dreams. This, in the truest sense, is why we call them “powerful” women—they have the power to make several others take the road less travelled,” read Fortune India’s statement, having collated a list as diverse as it was interesting, given that it has representation from various sectors, including banking, technology, law, media, entertainment, hospitality, manufacturing and more!

The leadership of CEO Zarine Daruwala helped the Standard Chartered Bank, which was struggling until a few years ago, turn the corner, ensuring a consistent and sharper trajectory of growth and profitability, an improved credit culture, and a focused approach on priority sector lending. The Bank’s net profit for FY19 rose 13.5% to ₹2,169 crore, at a time when the banking industry is besieged with bad debt, keeping the Non-Performing Assets under check.

The daughter of Adi Godrej – Godrej Group Chairman, Nisaba Godrej is steering the flagship company of the consumer goods-to-real estate conglomerate at a time when the macroeconomic situation has turned unfavourable for consumer growth. Under her leadership, the company plans to focus on innovations and enhancements to drive profitable growth in India and overseas. Despite the headwinds, the company managed to grow sales in the first quarter of FY20.

Trained in Chemical Engineer, Meher Pudumjee joined Thermax in 1990 and took over as Chairperson in 2004. Last year, she led the company in its expansion and increased its product footprint despite a global economic slowdown; with revenue from the international business rising 20% this year. Under her tutelage, Thermax inaugurated its manufacturing facility in Andhra Pradesh in 2019.

Courtesy: Parsi Times


Minoo Jokhi is a Mathemagician par excellence. A
student who till 9 th standard struggled to even do 3
times 4= 12 today can instantly tell you the square root
of 6,22,521 is 789. Encouraged by his mother Kety;
Minoo who made his weakest point his greatest asset.
To the amazement of all his school mates; teachers
and others he mastered the very subject where he was
a TOTAL FAILURE to learn Tables up to 1,00,00,000
and remember Cube Roots up to 1000000000 among
other skills.
Minoo has performed over 850 Mathemagic Shows.
He has performed abroad 11 times which includes 7 visits to Sri Lanka and once to USA, Canada, Spain and Indonesia besides performing in various parts of India like Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Kerala, Kolkata, Rajkot, Lonavala, Navsari and Dharampur.
Minoo believes that Memory is either good or bad and in reality is either trained or untrained. Over 90 Leading Indian Magazines and Newspapers have featured him. He has written over 40 articles on Memory  Development in various newspapers. Also he has come more than 10 times on Television. He has been invited to many schools, colleges, clubs and
Minoo remembers tables up to one crore, can also multiply huge figures mentally at amazing speeds, can remember over 2000 Telephone numbers, Mobile  Numbers and Date of Births of Individuals and can tell you the day of any date from 1 st January 1600 to date. E.g. 5 th August 1973 was a Sunday. Now he has also say Cube Roots from 1 to 1000000000(100 Crores) very quickly.
Minoo Jokhi is the second person after General Sam Maneckshaw to have been a Honorary Rotarian of the Rotary Club of Bombay Hills South. He has performed abroad too at the 7 th World Zoroastrian Congress, USA in the year 2000 and at the International Medical Congresses held in Sri Lanka in 2002, 2003,2004 2005, 2007 and 2012. He also spoke in
Sri Lanka in 2014. He was invited to attend and participate in the Parliament of World Religions held in Spain, Barcelona in July 2004 and represented India as the only youth Speaker at the Quest for Global Healing Conference in Indonesia in May 2006.
He also performed at the 14 th North American Zoroastrian Congress held in Toronto, Canada in July 2007. In December 2008, he traveled to Kolkata where he performed a series of shows enthralling the audiences there. He was the only Zoroastrian from India at the United Religions Initiative Global Assembly where he performed before 400 Delegates from over 60 Countries.
Minoo is also a very Successful and Dedicated Memory Development Trainer having taught over 6,000 students. His classes are FUN CUM LEARN. His mother Kety has single-handedly alone encouraged and motivated Minoo and brought up him and his younger brother very well. Minoo’s website is
Minoo has a great passion for Acting and has acted in the T.V.Show Nagin 3 in 2018. He has also acted in Short Films as well as Dramas. He has also won several Public-Speaking Competitions and is an avid Lawn Tennis Player.
Minoo Jokhi is a friendly and a helpful person by nature. He conducts classes in Memory-Development, which is his specialty where he has over 35 levels of Memory Enhancement Techniques Courses and also teaches Personality-Development, Public Speaking, Mathematics, English, History and is not just a teacher but also a friend cum guide to his students. He can be contacted by anyone who desires his services.
He also is a Numerologist and provides Numerology Consultations. He has a passion for giving speeches and has given speeches at public forums and he loves children more than anything else. He had a horrible childhood full of unhappiness and Minoo ensures that all the children he teaches get lots of happiness and he goes about his job with utmost dedication.
The best thing about this Mathemagician is that he is hungry to learn constantly and is amazingly versatile. He is a brilliant public speaker having won 15 first prizes, is an LIC Agent, has been a Green Belt in Karate and is an avid Yoga Performer. He has also made a name for himself in Lawn Tennis where he has won various trophies at the club level
and wishes to go further in it. He is a brilliant tutor who specializes in teaching Memory-Development to people of all ages and has taught children of 4 years age to elders of 75 years age. People of all ages have learned the Memory Development Program from him and all have immensely benefited. He sees to it that his students understand how the Memory has to be trained and how things learned once can never be forgotten. He can be contacted on Mobile No
9821407519 and his email is
Do see his website: where you  can know much more about this talented Mathemagician

Persis Amrolia – Patients with incurable leukaemia declared cancer-free after groundbreaking treatment

A new treatment for an incurable form of leukaemia has been hailed by experts after it left patients without a trace of the disease.

The patients were treated with a faster acting version of CAR-T therapy, in which the body’s immune system is used against the malignant cells.

The trial at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London was carried out with the aim of reducing the side-effects of treatment for the patients, most of whom are children.

The treatment for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) sees the patient’s own immune cells genetically modified and then used to target cancer.

During the trial, 14 patients with a previously incurable strain of ALL were given the therapy and 12 saw the disease cleared after three months. Five of those patients remain leukaemia free.

Professor Persis Amrolia, the study’s chief investigator, said: “CAR-T therapy is a fantastic example of using the power of the immune system to specifically target cancer cells.

“While it doesn’t work for everyone, it can offer hope for those children who have run out of all other options.

“We’re just at the beginning of this new treatment and over the next few years, I hope we can refine it further to make it safer and more effective.

“The side-effects of CAR-T therapies can be severe, so we hope that this new technology can reduce the risk for patients.”

Austin Sweeney, 10, was diagnosed with ALL when he was two and was subsequently invited to take part in the trial after he had exhausted all other treatment options.

His father, Scott Sweeney, said Austin was “so fortunate” to have been able to participate.

“He had the cells at Great Ormond Street Hospital in October 2016 and we found out on his birthday at the end of that month that the cells were doing exactly what we needed them to do,” Mr Sweeney said.

“Two-and-a-half years later, Austin is doing so well. He is more physical than he has ever been. It is lovely to see him full of energy.”

ALL affects around 400 children in the UK each year, according to the hospital, and while most patients can be cured with standard treatments including chemotherapy and transplant, some relapse.

Survival for children suffering from ALL increased from under 10 per cent in the 1960s to 90 per cent in 2015, though the survival rate is lower for babies.

The hospital said the research, which was published in the Nature Medicine journal on Monday, offers great hope to those with relapsed ALL, which is the most common cause of child cancer death in the UK.

Additional reporting by PA

First in 215 yrs, woman to helm Asiatic Society

Balaporia holds a General Certificate of Education from Oxford (Photo by Raju Shinde)

For the first time in its 215-year-old history, a woman has been appointed as the president of the Asiatic Society of Mumbai.
The announcement of 77-year-old Vispi Balaporia’s appointment was made on Saturday after she reportedly won 107 of 163 votes.

Elections for the head post of the historical institution are held every three years and a person can serve only two terms.
The daughter of Shavax Lal, who worked as secretary to Dr Rajendra Prasad, the first President of India, Balaporia retired as the Head of the Department of English, and vice-principal of Jai Hind College. Currently, she is a visiting faculty at the BMM Department of Jai Hind College.
Talking to Mirror, the acclaimed academician stressed on the importance of ensuring the completion of ongoing projects and generating funds.
“Several projects depend on the generosity of donors; such as the conservation of old and rare books, as well as a large collection of old maps that require restoration. Experts who undertake such specialised work need to be paid. Then, there are infrastructural improvements as well, for which plans are ready, but permissions have to be obtained and funding sought.”

Click Here for the full story in Mumbai Mirror

Alka Dhupkar – Mumbai Mirror

Boman Irani sings at ZTFE Khordad Saal function

On the auspicious day of Khordad Sal, Thursday 22nd August 2019, the ZTFE hosted the Parsee Gymkhana Cricket Team for dinner at the Grade II* listed Art Deco Zoroastrian Centre, London.


The Parsee Gymkhana Team were visiting London to play against Surrey County Cricket Club Charles Alcock XI at the Kia Oval on Friday 23rd August for the coveted ‘1886 Trophy’.


Accompanying the Parsee Gymkhana Team was their No.1 fan,  Boman Irani, A Listed Bollywood Actor & Theatre Personality, actor extraordinaire, photographer and singer.


Over 310 Zoroastrians and interfaith guests, including The Worshipful The Mayor of Harrow Cllr Nitin Parekh, Navin Shah AM, members of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces, Harrow Interfaith were entertained by Boman Irani on Khordad Sal, Thursday 22nd August 2019.


To conclude the evening, Boman sang ‘I did it my way’, the song previously sang by Frank Sinatra.

Mickey Mehta celebrates his 58th Birthday!

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Answer the question , “Why Wellness Should be the Religion No.1”?
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Enter into the #Contest!
Answer the question , “Why Wellness Should be the Religion No.1”?
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Enter into the #Contest!
Answer the question , “Why Wellness Should be the Religion No.1”?
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Answer the question , “Why Wellness Should be the Religion No.1”?
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‘You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream!’ 

The above quote may have been said by the British scholar and novelist – C.S. Lewis, but no one can prove it better than the maverick photographer turned actor – Boman Irani, who made his Bollywood debut at the age of 44 and made a mark for himself with his excellent comic timing and signature style of acting.

“If there is passion in your heart and fire in your belly there is no one who can stop you from moving forward,” says the Housefull 3 actor, who has done everything in his life with complete passion and honesty, be it acting in front of the camera, capturing photographs through his lenses or waiting tables at The Taj Mahal Palace Hotel as a waiter.

Yeah, today Boman Irani may be one of the most sought after actor who is known for his versatility and brilliant performances in films like Munnabhai M.B.B.SKhosla Ka Ghosla3 Idiots etc., but there was a time when this successful actor worked as a waiter and even sat in his ancestral shop selling chips.

“As a kid I had a speech defect, I had a lisp, I used to actually talk like my character Virus from 3 Idiots. To make matters worse I was dyslexic, who was not good at academics. People used to call me Boman the duffer. So I decided to do a course to be a waiter and joined The Taj Mahal Palace Hotel as a waiter. I worked there for 2 years and put my heart in it. My granny used to say – ‘gali ka mochi bano, toh bhi sabse acha mochi bano’, basically be the best in anything you do and that has stayed with me always,” says Boman.

However, Boman was not destined to be a waiter forever. His mother met with an accident and Boman had to take over his family shop. “I started sitting in our shop. I sat in the shop for over 14 years. It was a long time. So imagine sitting in a shop and saying to myself that I think I am a creative person, I think I need to do something with my ability to either writer, or to understand, or to put down words, or to breakdown a screenplay and understand it…I think I am passionate about all that. Actually, I was a student of cinema since I was 12-years-old. As a kid my mom used to encourage me to see films every day, over and over again. She told me to observe cinematography, acting, music, camera movements, lyrics, lightening… everything. I used to watch movies 30 to 40 times at Alexander theater, so I was passionate about cinema. So what do I do? At 32 nobody was making me an actor because that’s a funny age, you are neither too young nor too old to play characters. So what’s the next best thing to do? I bought a camera from the money that I had saved from the tips I got at Taj as a waiter and decided to become a photographer,” reveals Boman.

He juggled his photography career along with managing the shop and actually succeeded in turning his passion into a paycheck. Initially, Boman made about 25 rupees per picture but soon his go-getting attitude and talent coupled with his passion for succeeding helped him to make 300 dollars per picture. He recalls, “I needed to do something creatively and photography was my outlet. I started with sports photography, my pictures were getting composed pretty well and I used to make about 25 – 30 rupees per picture. I said this is a great outlet, if I can make a profession out of this, then I will be a happy creative soul. That happened too, I bagged my first big project as an official photographer for The World Cup of Boxing that was happening in Mumbai. Then I did some pictures for an international client, for which I got 900 dollars, 300 dollars for each picture. I was thrilled. I was finally a professional photographer.”

And though Boman was content to have found some creative outlet, he wasn’t afraid to experiment further as he says, “One day while I was doing a portfolio for Shiamak Davar, he told me that I need to be on stage. I was like why not, chalo karte hai. He took me to theater thespian Alyque Padamsee, who told me I had no talent. However, Shiamak coaxed him to take me and I did a small role of a pimp in a play called Roshni. The show was a disaster but the press talked about me. Then I did another play and another play and another play… and then suddenly I became a theater actor with successful plays. I started getting film offers but I said no to a lot of movies and a lot of television work. Then one fine day Vinod Chopra, who had seen an experimental film I had done – Let’s Talk, called me. He gave me a cheque for 2 lakh rupees saying he would like to block my dates for the next year. I humbly thanked him and returned the cheque. Six months later, he called me again for Munnabhai M.B.B.S, I turned down the offer. Few days later he again called me and insisted that I meet Raju Hirani. I was hesitant to meet him, but I still went. I was planning to finish that meeting in 20 minutes but I ended up spending 8 hours with Raju that day, and by the end of our meeting I said yes to play Dr. Asthana.”

The rest we all know is history. And while today Boman has a very successful career, the man hasn’t stopped dreaming. Recently he voiced his desire to direct a film someday. “I don’t want to keep anything unfulfilled in my life, so I will try it.”

Well, like he says — If there is passion in your heart and fire in your belly there is nothing that’s going to stop you, right Mr. Irani?

Image Credits: cochintalkies, magnamags, indiatvnews, talkingmoviez, parsikhabar

By Shweta Kulkarni

Zubin Karkaria named Global Game Changer in UK

Zubin Karkaria, founder and CEO of VFS Global, was presented with the honour by Commonwealth Secretary General Patricia Scotland at the Indian Awards event held in the UK Houses of Parliament complex this week.

A leading Indian entrepreneur who heads the world’s largest outsourcing and technology services specialist for governments and diplomatic missions has been named a Global Game Changer at an awards ceremony in London. Zubin Karkaria, founder and CEO of VFS Global, was presented with the honour by Commonwealth Secretary General Patricia Scotland at the Indian Awards event held in the UK Houses of Parliament complex this week.

“While VFS Global has been working with UK Visas and Immigration since 2003 in supporting their vision and agenda across the world, I would also like to acknowledge the role of the travel industry in the continuous development of UK-India relations,” said Karkaria.

“Driving business excellence through continuous innovation and the highest levels of customer service have been at the core of VFS Global’s philosophy ever since we launched our company in 2001, and prestigious awards such as this one keep us motivated in our quest to constantly raise the bar,” said the CEO, who divides his time between Dubai, India and Europe.

The Indian Awards are organised annually by the India Business Group (IBG) advisory and consultancy. Its Global Game Changer honour acknowledges an individual, based anywhere in the world, for their outstanding contribution to globalising India in any particular field.

Lord Karan F Bilimoria CBE likely to be next CBI chair

We in the ZTFE are delighted to read in The Guardian, FT and other papers on Sunday 27th May 2019, that our patron Lord Karan F Bilimoria CBE DL will be appointed the next Vice President of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) on 18th June, and next year he will be confirmed as its President. You will agree that it is a huge honour to lead the main apex organisation of UK business and industry.

In his career, Lord Bilimoria has won many firsts and we in the ZTFE and the world wide Zoroastrian community are extremely proud of his achievements. In the last 10 years he has emerged as one of the authentic voices of business in the UK. Lord Bilimoria’s speeches and writings have always attracted attention and comment and now he will be in a position to make a big contribution to the UK economy.Let us raise our bottles of Cobra Beer and covey our heartiest congratulations to Lord Bilimoria.
Yours sincerely

Dorab E Mistry

Global Working Group Representative

Zoroastrian Trust Funds of Europe (Incorporated)

Next CBI chair likely to be Cobra beer founder KaranBilimoria

Angela MonaghanSun 26 May 2019Lord Bilimoria is vocal remain supporter but says his view is ‘completely separate’ to role

The founder of Cobra beer, Karan Bilimoria, is being lined up to be the next president of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) at a crucial time for the business lobby group as Britain prepares to leave the EU.

Lord Bilimoria, a vocal remain supporter and a campaigner for a second referendum, became the frontrunner to succeed the Tesco chairman, John Allan, as president after the group said he would stand for election as its vice-president at its annual meeting on 18 June.

The CBI confirmed that tradition would suggest Bilimoria’s appointment as vice-president makes him the most likely candidate to take over when Allen’s two-year term ends next summer.

Bilimoria, an independent cross-bench peer, turned Cobra beer into a household name after founding it in 1989 and remains its chairman. He was also the founding chairman of the UK-India Business Council.

“I’m very much looking forward to the role,” he said. “These are very challenging times for the country, the economy, and for British business, and the CBI has a crucial role to play. I’m looking forward to contributing.”

Bilimoria has previously compared the Brexit process to “watching a train crash in slow motion” and campaigned for a second referendumwith the Business for a People’s Vote group.

He said on Sunday his personal view on Brexit was “completely separate” and that he would be aligned with the CBI as an organisation.

He added: “I want a resolution to this in a way that would be good for the UK and for British business.”

A CBI spokesman said: “Lord Bilimoria’s views on whether there should be a second referendum are well known, yet the CBI’s position is unchanged. Passing a withdrawal agreement is the only way to avoid a damaging no-deal scenario and secure a transition period, creating much-needed breathing space for firms of all sizes.

“Failure to break the deadlock – by all politicians compromising to find a deal that commands a majority in parliament, [that] is acceptable to the EU and protects our economy – means the clamour for a general election or a second referendum will grow.”

If elected next month as vice-president, Bilimoria will replace the CBI’s current vice-president, Paul Drechsler, when he steps down at the end of his one-year term. Drechsler was CBI president before Allan, and if tradition is followed, Allan will become vice-president once Bilimoria is confirmed as president next year.

Carolyn Fairbairn, the CBI director-general, thanked Drechsler for his contribution and said Bilimoria’s wealth of business experience would prove invaluable for the organisation’s 190,000 members at a critical time for the country.“Lord Bilamoria has had a remarkable career in British business, during which he has built a deep understanding what it takes to build a successful company,” Fairbairn said. 
The CBI president is a non-executive role that chairs the group’s board and helps to shape the organisation’s policy decisions.

Congratulations to Lord Karan for the prestigious post he will be holding. Makes our community proud.God bless him in all his endeavours.

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