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Strategic Affairs Distinguished Lecture: “Bangladesh: Democracy Challenges; Strategic Concerns”

November 25 @ 10:00 AM - 11:30 PM

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You are cordially invited to

Strategic Affairs Distinguished Lecture

Bangladesh: Democracy Challenges; Strategic Concerns

Date: Saturday, November 25th 2023

Time: 10.00 AM EST (Washington D.C.) | 8:30 PM IST (New Delhi)

Distinguished Speaker

Prof. Veena Sikri


Dr. A. Adityanjee, President

Council for Strategic Affairs


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About the Topic (Abstract)

About the Distinguished Speaker

Veena Sikri

Professor and Ambassador,

Founding Trustee and Convener, South Asia Women’s Network (SWAN),

Vice Chairperson, South Asia Foundation (SAF India), New Delhi.

Veena Sikri’s career and experience straddle the worlds of academia and diplomacy. She has served for 37 years (1971-2008) as a career diplomat with the Indian Foreign Service, including as High Commissioner to Bangladesh (2003-06) and to Malaysia (2000-03), as Consul General in Hong Kong (1996-2000), and Director General of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), New Delhi (1989-92). She has held challenging and prestigious assignments at the Indian Embassies in Moscow, Kathmandu, Paris, and at the Permanent Mission of India to the UN in New York (1977-81), where she represented India in the UN Security Council, ECOSOC, and at Summit meetings of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM).

After retiring from the Indian Foreign Service, Veena Sikri joined academia as Professor, holding the Ford Foundation endowed Chair, Academy of International Studies, Jamia Millia Islamia University, New Delhi, from February 2009 to October 2013.  She was concurrently Visiting Senior Research Fellow with the Institute of South East Asian Studies (ISEAS), Singapore (November 2008 to October 2011). Her work at ISEAS resulted in a book on Malaysia-India relations.

Veena Sikri is the Founding Trustee and Convener of the South Asia Women’s Network (SWAN). While at Jamia Millia Islamia, Veena Sikri conceptualized and created this organization, which was launched in March 2009. With its unique focus on gender empowerment as the key to sustainable economic growth, social development and environmental sustainability in South Asia, SWAN brings together women leaders from nine South Asian countries : Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Two flagship projects that SWAN is currently working on are on “Women for Change : Building a Gendered Media in South Asia”, and “The Rural Tourism based Social Enterprise Project for Sustainable Development and Gender Empowerment in South Asia”.

Professor Veena Sikri is Vice Chairperson of the South Asia Foundation (India Chapter), a secular, non-profit and non-political organization, with eight autonomous chapters across South Asia.

As Chairperson of ICCR’s Performance Audit Committee, Veena Sikri submitted, in December 2016, her Report on “India’s Soft Power Projection Through Cultural Diplomacy”. She has served as member of ICCR’s General Assembly (2016-19), and Chairperson of ICCR’s Finance Committee (2016-19).

Veena Sikri’s publications include “India & Malaysia : Intertwined Strands” (2013), published by ISEAS, Singapore, and Manohar, New Delhi; and the volume co-edited by her (together with Professor Muchkund Dubey and Professor Imtiaz Ahmed) on “Contemporarising Tagore and the World” (UPL, Dhaka, 2013). She is currently working on a book titled “The Geopolitics of Bangladesh”.

Further Information and Contact

Ripudaman Pachauri | E-Mail:

Strategic Affairs Distinguished Lecture is a presentation of

Council for Strategic Affairs


November 25
10:00 AM - 11:30 PM
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