Born January 11, 1951 (age 58

)

Shekhar Gupta is the Group CEO of the Indian Express Group of Publications and the Editor-in-Chief of The Indian Express, often touted as India's most independent national newspaper. The paper that was traditionally identified with Journalism of Courage standing up to cynical commercialism and crude commoditization of news, a newspaper at the forefront of investigative and public-affairs journalism. He leads the nation’s largest network of award-winning journalists, whose work has effected change in several areas, including government

 His

weekly column called National Interest, now in its ninth year, has become a touchstone for new ideas in politics, governance, society, business and sports. He also hosts an interview-based programme Walk the Talk on NDTV 24x7, India’s most watched and respected English news channel.

 He

has, on account of his varied experience as a journalist and his analytical writings, influenced public opinion on important matters. He has the ability to write about the most complex issue in a manner that readers comprehend the crux of the matter and begin to think about them. Through his column 'National Interest', he has always tried to highlight issues that need a national perspective in a nonpartisan manner. He is a very balanced

 Gupta

began his career as a reporter at the Indian Express in 1977. Today he edits The Indian Express and its Sunday edition, The Sunday Express, which he launched in 2002.  Known as a reporter’s editor, he has some of the significant newsbreaks in contemporary Indian journalism to his credit

 Gupta's

career has been marked by an unusual and unique combination in daily journalism: excellence as an individual with the highest professional and ethical standards in step with excellence as a leader who has brought about institutional changes in the profession and the industry.  In his years spent so far at the helm, The Indian Express, and its Sunday edition, The Sunday Express (which Gupta launched four years ago) are today at the forefront of investigative

 At

26, as a reporter with The Indian Express, he exposed the horrific Nellie massacre in Assam that marked a watershed in the NorthEast’s ethnic conflict (his work in Assam won him several awards and formed the basis of his first book Assam: A Valley Divided, published in 1984). The Nellie massacre took place in Assam during a six-hour

 The

massacre was one of many violent incidents during the infamous 1983 elections conducted in the midst of the Assam Agitation. The elections were declared against the wishes of the Assam Agitation leaders who did not want an election till the electoral rolls were cleansed of illegal immigrants

 Seven

years before 9/11, travelled across Afghanistan, Pakistan, Germany, the US and the UK, to report extensively on the threat from Islamic fundamentalism, including its links with Osama bin Laden.  In 1984, Gupta exposed LTTE training camps in India (prompting many in the government to label him anti-national) and thereby showed how New Delhi's policy of appeasing

 After

six years at the Express, Gupta went to India Today, the country’s largest and premier newsmagazine. There, as Senior Editor, his investigative journalism covered the most important newsbreaks in the country in recent times, from the insurgency in Punjab that led to the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi to the war in Sri Lanka.

 The

insurgency in the Indian state of Punjab originated in the late 1970s. The roots of the insurgency were very complex. Punjab, after Indian independence, had large Hindi speaking areas in the south and the west. In the 1960s, many Akali leaders started agitating for a Punjabi-speaking state.

 When

a census was conducted to decide the division of Punjab, many Punjabi-speaking Hindus decided to put Hindi as their native language instead of Punjabi. Many Sikhs viewed Punjabi Hindus as traitors for abandoning the cause of Punjab and Punjabi language. After the division of Punjab on linguistic purpose, Punjab received a Sikh majority for

 Gupta

has also been instrumental in taking Express journalism to cities and states left untouched by the national media. In 1996, at the height of the militant violence in Jammu and Kashmir, Gupta launched an edition of the paper in Jammu and Srinagar. The Express team in the state is now considered the best of any news organisation there, winning the highest number of national and international awards than any other news bureau in the state.

 Under

Gupta's leadership, The Indian Express and its journalists have won virtually every national award in journalism at every level of seniority.  The Express News Service is the largest network of reporters, editors and photographers in the country today, bringing together the best of talent and experience. Under Gupta's mentoring, many of the journalists have grown into positions of leadership in the Express and outside it in several newsrooms, print and broadcast across the country.

 Besides

his book on Assam, Gupta has authored India Redefines Its Role, published by the Oxford University Press under the Adelphi Paper Series of the International Institute of Strategic Studies, London, where Gupta worked as a Research Associate. He was also a member of its council. Besides The Indian Express, Gupta’s writing has been featured in several newspapers and magazines in India and abroad, including The Wall Street Journal, International Herald Tribune, Newsweek

 Recently,

Gupta became the first Indian journalist to insinuate the involvement of "Hindu fanatics" in the twin bomb blasts, in Delhi's Jama Masjid in an article in Newsweek International, while giving a clean chit to Islamic fundamentalists' involvement in the terror attacks in India which is widely documented. Because of this and other partisan work performed by him, he has been dubbed as the Wheeler Dealer Editor by a popular blog Spindian Express.

 His

weekly column called National Interest, now in its ninth year, has become a touchstone for new ideas in politics, governance, society, business and sports.  He is a regular guest and speaker at the World Economic Forum in Davos and its India summits.

 Gupta

has been invited as a guest speaker by several universities and institutions in India and overseas. These include Stanford University, the John F Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, the Woodrow Wilson School of International Affairs at Princeton University, Infosys Technologies in Bangalore, the National Law Institute, Defence Services Staff

 Bharat

Asmita Jana Jagaran Shreshta Award: THE Indian Express Editor-in-Chief Shekhar Gupta has been felicitated with the Bharat Asmita Jana Jagaran Shreshta award 2007. This was announced by city-based MAEER’s MIT School of Government and MIT School of Management. Constituted in 2005, the awards are given to recognize and honour people for their innumerable contributions. Gupta has been awarded for the best practitioner of mass media.

 Padma

Bhushan Award: Express Group Editor-in-Chief Shekhar Gupta has been conferred the Padma Bhushan. The award recognizes his famous newsbreaks, beginning with the expose of the Nellie massacre in Assam that redefined the country’s engagement with the North-east, and now his weekly column ‘National Interest’, which have defined the issues for contemporary Indian politics, business, society and, of course, journalism.

 Fakhruddin

Ahmed Award: Belonging to Assam, Shri Fakruddin Ali Ahmed was the President of our country from 1974 to 1977. The Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed Memorial Award, instituted from the year 2005 onwards by the Government of Assam for those who promote national integration, is a deserving tribute to his memory. The 2006 award was given to Shekhar Gupta an eminent journalist by the President of India, Smt. Pratibha Patil, at the Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed memorial award ceremony.

 It

is perhaps fitting, therefore, that it was at The Indian Express, where Gupta began his career as and since then, Gupta’s byline has had an enduring association with the most important news events in India.

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