Farah Ahamed

Farah Ahamed is a human rights lawyer and writer. Her essays and short fiction have been published in anthologies and journals including The White Review, Ploughshares, The Massachusetts’ Review, and The Mechanics’ Institute Review. Her short story, Hot Mango Chutney Sauce, was shortlisted for the 2022 Commonwealth Prize. You can read more of her writing at: Farah and her sisters have been involved in raising awareness about menstruation and increasing access to menstrual products in Kenya for more than a decade. Find out about their work here:

Granaz Baloch

Granaz Baloch is a PhD student researching water resource management, gender and violence with a particular focus on the gendered aspects of household water management in the rural areas of Balochistan, Pakistan. Her aim is to elevate the voices of Baloch women who have been excluded from policy and planning around water scarcity. Her forthcoming book, A glass of water and women: Stories from Balochistan, will give visibility to the hidden and untold aspects of women’s and girl’s lives around disability, violence, and denial of access to school and proper health facilities.

Siba Barkataki

Siba Barkataki is Assistant Professor in the Department of French and Francophone Studies, English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU), Hyderabad. Her areas of specialisation are Swiss francophone writings of C.F Ramuz, memory of indenture in Indian Ocean literature and teaching French as a foreign language. She is also a professional translator.

Alnoor Bhimani

Alnoor Bhimani is Professor of Management Accounting and the Director of the South Asia Centre at London School of Economics. His research interests include the digitalization of business, governance and economic factors driving societal changes. He sits on the advisory boards of universities in Asia, America, Africa and Europe. He is also Honorary Dean of the Suleman Dawood School of Business at the Lahore University of Management Sciences which has become the first ‘period friendly’ university in Pakistan. The business school is the first to offer a 50 per cent scholarship to every woman admitted to a graduate programme.

Srilekha Chakraborty

Srilekha Chakraborty has been working on gender and sexual reproductive health rights with the tribal communities of Jharkhand. She has been working on Menstruation and Body Rights for several years with the marginalized communities. She uses art, creativity and storytelling to teach sustainable behavioural change. Her work has been recognized by the Ministry of Women and Child Development in India. She was awarded the IRC–WASH, International Ton Schouten Award for advocacy and storytelling for creating change in sanitation and hygiene in 2020. The same year, Srilekha represented the Global Shaper Community at the World Economic Forum.

Shashi Deshpande

Shashi Deshpande is an Indian writer based in Bangalore and has written ten novels, one crime novel, a number of short stories, a book of essays and her literary memoir Listen to Me. She has also translated works from Kannada and Marathi into English. Her latest book is a collection of essays Subversions. She has always attempted  to make women’s lives visible and their voices heard.

Tishani Doshi

Tishani Doshi writes poetry, essays and fiction. One of her most recent books, Girls Are Coming Out of the Woods wasshortlisted for the Ted Hughes Award, and her novel Small Days and Nights, was shortlisted for the RSL Ondaatje Award. Her fourth full-length collection of poetry is, A God at the Door. She lives in Tamil Nadu, India.

Lyla FreeChild

Lyla FreeChild is a self taught artist based in Jaipur, India. Her paintings and pottery work revolves around exploring sexuality, pleasure, trauma, social taboos and feminism. To celebrate the beauty of nudity and the sacred feminine power, she often uses her menstrual fluid in her art works.

Zinthiya Ganeshpanchan

Zinthiya Ganeshpanchan is the founder of the Zinthiya Trust, a charity supporting women and girls to be free form violence and poverty. She has over fifteen years of experience advocating against gender-based violence, promoting women’s empowerment and campaigning to end period poverty. She was a fellow of the Clore Social Foundation Experienced Leader Programme (2018–19) and a Winston Churchill fellow (2020–21).

Anshu and Meenakshi Gupta

Anshu Gupta is Founder Director, Goonj and its pioneering work on menstrual health and hygiene in India under the aegis of ‘Not Just A Piece of Cloth’ (NJPC) initiative.  Goonj was one of the first agencies to include cloth pads and women’s menstrual needs as part of their disaster relief work and packs.  Anshu Gupta is a Ramon Magsaysay awardee and an Ashoka and Schwab Fellow.

Aditi Gupta

Aditi Gupta runs Menstrupedia, the world’s most innovative company when it comes to teaching and learning about periods. She has educated more than 50,000 girls about periods, trained 10,000 educators and impacted the lives of 13 million girls worldwide. Aditi was named in the Forbes India 30 under 30 list in 2014 for her work towards breaking taboos around menstruation. She is a TED speaker, a UN Goalkeeper and listed as one of BBC’s 100 influential women in 2015. She was also named as one of the Most Powerful Women in Business, 2017 by Business World.


Prachi Jain

Prachi Jain is a development professional who worked with for Goonj’s menstrual health and hygiene initiative called ‘Not Just a Piece of Cloth”. Prachi has a Masters in Sociology from Ambedkar University, Delhi, and her key areas of interest are gender and sexuality.

Anish Kapoor

Anish Kapoor is internationally recognized as one of today’s leading contemporary artists. Since representing Britain at the 44th Venice Biennale in 1990, where he was awarded the Premio Duemila and winning the Turner Prize in 1991, he has held major solo exhibitions globally. His work is permanently exhibited in some of the most important international collections and museums. Increasingly renowned for artworks that blur the boundary between architecture and sculpture, many of his public works have become iconic landmarks. Kapoor lives and works in London.

Rupi Kaur

Rupi Kaur is a poet, artist, and performer. Her poetry collections, Milk and Honey and The Sun and Her Flowers, have sold millions of copies and have been translated into over forty languages. Her most recent book, Home Body, hit #1 on bestsellers lists around the world in its first week. Rupi’s work explores themes of love, loss, trauma, healing, feminism, and migration. She feels most at home when performing on stage and creating art.

K. Madavane

K. Madavane is retired professor from Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi where he did his PhD on the Death in Theatre of Absurd. Born in Pondicherry, he has directed over fifty plays in many languages which have been staged internationally. Amongst his most acclaimed are: Tughlaq (Girish Karnad), Tartuffe (Moliere), The Mahabharata of Women (Madavane), Hamlet and Macbeth (Shakespeare). His collection of short stories, Mourir à Bénarès was translated and published by Picador/Mac Millan (2018) under the title “To Die in Benares.” His play 1947-The Man from Lahore, was shortlisted for The Hindu Playwright Award, 2017.

Jaydeep Mandal

Jaydeep Mandal has been working in the menstrual hygiene sector for the last decade as the founder of Aakar Innovations and Aakar Social Ventures. He is also part of the PMO and Niti-Aayog’s ‘Champions of Change’ team as the onlymember from the menstrual hygiene sector to provide inputs to the government of India. Jaydeep won the Bio-based Materials of the Year award in 2019and the Global Bioplastics Award in 2018 for Anandi pads. Jaydeep is an engineer with an MBA in Innovations and Entrepreneurship and Global Innovation Program from GSB-Stanford University, US.

Amna Mawaz Khan

Amna Mawaz Khan is a performance artist trained in the Bharathanatyam, Kathak and Uday Shankar dance styles. She is a political organizer aligned with the Pakistani socialist- feminist movement. On instagram she is @amnadabbadoo and she tweets @Anarchistani

Sarah Naqvi

Sarah Naqvi is an Indian artist based in Mumbai/Amsterdam and largely engages with narratives around religious and societal polarisation. Their work centres art as a tool for activism and amplifies the fight against existing realities. Primarily working with textile, embroidery and found objects, they have a keen interest in puppetry. They were a recipient of The Phenomenal She Award in 2019 conferred by the Indian National Bar Association and the NID Ford Foundation Grant in 2018.

Ayra Indrias Patras

Ayra Indrias Patras is an assistant professor in the department of Political Science at Forman Christian College University in Lahore. She is interested in the intersections of gender, peace and minority rights in Pakistan. She writes about women and marginalized communities and lobbies and advocates for the constitutional rights of religious minorities. She has been working to improve menstrual awareness and health in Punjab for fifteen years.

Victoria Patrick

Victoria Patrick has translated more than seventy books from English to Urdu and published several award-winning poetry collections on women’s issues. She has won over sixty awards including the Best Poetess Award, Sitara-e-Pakistan, Adbi Wirsa Award, ID Shahaba Award, Lyricist Award, Fatima Jinnah Gold Medal, Silver Jubilee Celebration Award, LCC award and BM Yad Award. She is also a lyricist and her songs have been sung by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Noor Jehan. She is also known for her radio column ‘Hamari Duniya.’

Radha Paudel

Radha Paudel is an aesthetic nurse, turned author and activist. She is founder of the global network for Dignified Menstruation. A survivor of menstrual discrimination, she has dedicated her life to changing the narrative around menstruation by calling for a shift from hygiene to dignity and for a restructuring of gender dynamics in the home. As founder and CEO of Global South Coalition for Dignified Menstruation (, she initiated International Dignified Menstruation Day on 8thDecember 2019, hosted the first international workshop on dignified menstruation in 2020, and launched five books around the theme. She speaks internationally on the subject of dignified menstruation.

Radhika Radhakrishnan

Radhika Radhakrishnan is a feminist researcher, and an incoming PhD student in MIT’s Doctoral Program in History, Anthropology, and Science, Technology, and Society (HASTS). Her research focuses on understanding the challenges faced by gender-minoritized communities with emerging digital technologies in India, and finding entry points to intervene meaningfully. She also writes for media publications, gives public talks and hosts podcasts on digital rights from an intersectional gender lens. You can read more about Radhika’s work here:

Lisa Ray

Lisa Ray is a woman of no fixed address. She has enjoyed an accidental career in front of the camera despite an innate terror of being the centre of attention. After the release of her memoir Close to the Bone chronicling her diagnosis with blood cancer and beyond, Lisa is emboldened to go back into her shell and pursue writing and her passion in the visual arts. She is currently working on her next book and has co-founded an online curator led arts oriented platform called the Upside Space, set to launch before the metaverse takes over our daily lives.

Mariam Siar

Mariam Siar is from Afghanistan and now lives in Australia. She is a student at Deakin University in Australia, with a BA and MA in International Relations). Her passion lies in gender equality and poverty alleviation and she hopes she can contribute to this through her NGO, Afghan Women’s Support Group.

Shahzia Sikander

Pioneering Pakistani American artist Shahzia Sikander is widely celebrated for expanding and subverting pre-modern and classical Central and South-Asian miniature painting traditions and launching the form known today as neo-miniature. Her innovative work has led to survey exhibitions at the Morgan Library, the Hirshhorn Museum, the Whitney Museum of American Art and the MFA Houston Museum. A member of RISD’s Board of Trustees, she has won numerous awards, including a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship and the National Medal of Arts.

Shashi Tharoor

Shashi Tharoor, a third-term Member of Parliament for Thiruvananthapuram, is the bestselling author of twenty-three books, both fiction and non-fiction, besides being a former Under Secretary-General of the United Nations and a former Minister of State for Human Resource Development and for External Affairs in the Government of India. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman, a Commonwealth Writers’ Prize and the Crossword Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2019, he was also awarded the Sahitya Akademi Award in the category of ‘English Non-Fiction’ for his book An Era of Darkness.He chairs Parliament’s Standing Committee on Information Technology.

Meera Tiwari

Meera Tiwari is an associate professor of Global Development at the University of East London. Her research interests lie in UNICEF’s sustainable development goals (SDGs), poverty reduction and exploring social and economic poverties within the framework of the Capability Approach. She has experience of field research in India, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Brazil, Lebanon and East London and has published widely on several dimensions of deprivation that marginalized communities experience.

Tashi Zangmo

Tashi Zangmo is a founding director of the Bhutan Nuns Foundation (BNF), a non-profit organization founded in 2009 under the patronage of Her Majesty the Queen Mother, Tshering Yangdoen Wangchuck. The foundation is committed to ensuring that all Buddhist nuns in the country and other women and young girls at the grassroots enjoy improved living conditions, quality education and self-reliance, thus enabling women’s successful participation in the socio-economic development of Bhutan.She was listed among BBC’s Top 100 Influential Women in 2018. In 2012, she was awarded Mary Lyon Award by Mount Holyoke College.

Pan Macmillan Editorial Team

Teesta Guha Sarkar

Teesta Guha Sakar is Editorial Director at Pan Macmillan India, from where she publishes fiction and non-fiction across genres. She has previously worked at Penguin Random House India, Scholastic India and Oxford University Press. She lives in a green corner of New Delhi with three cats, a hundred plants and uncountable books.

Elizabeth James

Elizabeth James is a freelance editor based in Delhi-NCR. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English from St Stephen’s College, New Delhi. She did her Masters in English literature from the University of Delhi and was Assistant Editor at Pan Macmillan India.