Our Team

Mr. Sunil Bagwan, Program Manager (Literacy)

Mr. Sunil Bagwan is working as a programme Manager-Literacy for Language and Learning Foundation. He has been working in elementary education sector for the last 15 years. His last engagement was with Azim Premji Foundation as a Language Resource Person, he focused his work on developing curriculum, course material for pre-service and In-service teacher education programs and capacity building of internal team as well teacher educators, academic support to SCERT, DIETs and other TEIs. Prior to that he worked with organizations like Digantar, Lokmitra, and Muskaan.   A social work graduate, Sunil pursued his M. Phil on process of education attainment of slum children in Bhopal. Later he pursued Bachelor in Education (B. Ed.).   Sunil has been voluntary association with Chakmak Club Satwas (Eklavya), Kabir Jan Vikas Samooh and Pahachan during his school and university days. He writes regularly on various magazine on social processes of education and other pertinent issues.

Dr. Dhir Jhingran, Executive Director

Dr. Dhir Jhingran is the Founder Director of Language and Learning Foundation. He has worked in the primary education sector for over two decades, within and outside the government. As an officer of the Indian Administrative Service, he served as Principal Secretary, Education with the Government of Assam and as Director in the Ministry of Human Resource Development and Mission Director of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan as well as the District Primary Education Programme. In addition, he has handled several other profiles, such as Senior Advisor to UNICEF India, Asia Regional Director and Chief Program Officer with Room to Read and Country Director, TESS India. He has made significant contributions to the development and implementation of early grade reading programs in several countries in Asia and Africa and several states in India. Dr. Jhingran has authored two books based on empirical researches in primary education that he conducted and has contributed to many books and journals.

Mr. Mahendra Kumar, Trustee

Mr. Mahendra Kumar served as the state coordinator for Tribal Education in District Primary Education Programme ( DPEP) and Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan ( SSA) from 1993- 2010 under School Education Department , Govt. of Odisha where he developed India’s first state sector programme for multilingual education (MLE) in 10 tribal languages. His major work on Odisha folklore is Visioning Folklore ( 2002) Saora Tales and Songs (2005) Oral Epics of Kalahandi (2007) Oral poetry of Kalahandi (2008). He has also compiled Folktales of Odisha (NBT, New Delhi). He visited universities in China, South Korea, Thailand and Nepal on Folklore and Multilingual Education. Dr Mishra received the Sahitya Academy Award in 1999 in Odisha.He is a member of Expert Advisory Committee in the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Government of India. As a Founding Trustee of LLF, Dr. Mishra will be providing his leadership and guidance to the MLE work.

Mr. Sushant Verma, Trustee

Mr. Sushant Verma is a Trustee of LLF. He has got over nineteen years of intensive experience in managing social development programs, especially in rural development in education, teacher education, public health, livelihood promotion, community development, disaster management, relief and rehabilitation, skill development, corporate social responsibility and women’s empowerment. Currently, he is the Country Director of TESS India/Open University UK. He has also served at senior management levels in reputed Multilateral/bilateral, international and national humanitarian and funding agencies, such as USAID, World Bank, Christian Children’s Fund Inc (CCF), Heifer International, Action Aid/Commonwealth Education Fund UK, PHRN, etc., along with exposure to rigorous grassroots level interventions. He has been awarded various National and International awards for his outstanding contribution in the field of community initiatives, especially focused on youth and rural development. He is a nominee of MHRD Government of India for JRM Teacher Education. He has to his credit a MBA (Rural Development) with specialization in Women and Child development.

Mr. Uddalak Datta, Trustee and Advisor (Operations)

Mr. Uddalak Datta is a Trustee and over-sees the Operations of LLF. He has been working in the field of elementary education for more than two decades - both for government programs and for non-profit sector- across India. Since his departure from Room to Read, where he worked as the Country Director in 2009, he has been doing independent consulting work, based in Delhi. Mr. Datta’s focus has been predominantly on quality of education with emphasis on issues of disadvantaged communities - particularly the tribal, linguistically marginalized and urban deprived groups - through strategic planning, capacity building and research initiatives. Development of supplementary reading material and environment education are also his interest areas. Being a Post-graduate in Cultural Anthropology, Mr. Datta keenly follows and thinks on issues emerging from contemporary change processes like globalization; particularly the relationships between language, education and identity. He is currently pursuing research for a PhD in Gauhati University on the subject Role of Education in Manifestation of Identity in Multi-lingual Situation.

Ms. Nita Aggarwal, Course Coordinator and Program Lead (Literacy)

Ms. Nita Aggarwal is working as Programme Lead (Professional Development) for Language and Learning Foundation. She has worked with several national and International NGOs viz Room to Read, British Council, Absolute Return for Kids (ARK) and READ Alliance and has contributed to designing and managing early Grades reading/ literacy programs. Her educational background includes a B.El.Ed followed by Master’s Degree in Sociology.

Dr. Nidhi Vinayak, Program Manager (Literacy)

Dr. Nidhi Vinayak is an educational professional with about ten years of experience. She is presently working in the field of teacher training and content generation at the Language and Learning Foundation. Economist by education, she altered between teaching in colleges and schools in her early career. A Montessori diploma, B Ed and Ph.D in non-formal pre-school education weaned her into school education and her earlier work in Pratham provided her the grass-root experience. She holds firm belief in her convictions - for example utility of informational text - but also admires openness about ideas. She likes to keep herself apprised of latest research, as well as retain her touch with the field. She is goal oriented. She can be contacted at nidhi.vinayak@gmail.com

Mr. Ajay Gupta, Project Manager

Mr. Ajay Gupta has more than 15 years’ experience in Elementary Education. During last 15 years, in his professional career, he has worked with different organizations like Digantar, Vidya Bhawan Society, Room to Read India trust, and SRTT. He has coordinated various field projects in Elementary Education, and was also involved in developing training modules for teachers, Resource Persons, coordinators and also worked as Resource Persons in training. He was also involved in curriculum designing, teaching learning material and text books development for Language and Early Grade Reading. Presently He is working as Project Manager with LLF.

Mr. Sandeep Dubey, Assistant Program Manager (MLE)

Mr. Sandeep Dubey has been engaging with language teaching and research since last 4 years. He has worked with an international school, Eklavya, and Muskaan. His work with children, from diverse backgrounds, and with language teachers has led to an understanding of multilingualism and literacy. Currently, he is working towards designing and implementing Multilingual Education (MLE) course for teacher and teacher educators with LLF.

Ms. Pooja Tanwar, Programme Associate

Ms. Pooja Tanwar is working as Programme Associate with Language and Learning Foundation. She has 4 years of working experience in the field of Research, planning, and implementing the various programmatic and sponsorship activities at field level. She has worked with several national and International organizations viz V V Giri National Labour Institute, Action India, Children International and Childfund. Her educational background includes a BA Economics Honors followed by Master’s Degree in Labour and Development.

Mr. Prakash Chandra Arya, Office Assistant

Mr. Prakash Chandra Arya is working as Office Assistant for Language and Learning Foundation. He has 5 years of work experience and has worked with several organizations like Competition Commission of India, Titan India Ltd. Prakash has done his schooling from Uttarakhand.