News9 Global Summit unites global leaders for insight and inspiration

News9 Global Summit unites global leaders for insight and inspiration

The summit began with discussions on critical issues, setting the stage for robust dialogues.

News9 Global Summit

Mumbai: The much-anticipated News9 Global Summit commenced on 26 February 2024, hosting a gathering of eminent personalities, thought leaders, and industry experts from over 20 countries across the globe. The summit, part of the prestigious TV9 What India Thinks Today (WITT) summit, kicked off with a series of insightful discussions and keynote addresses, setting the stage for robust dialogues on critical issues facing India and the world.

The day began with a warm welcome address by TV9 Network MD and CEO Barun Das who extended his greetings to all attendees, emphasising the significance of the decadal momentum and geopolitical moment that seem to be in India’s favour.

The day’s first keynote address, titled ‘From Asia-Pacific to Indo-Pacific: Reframing Regional Relations’, delivered by former prime minister of Australia, Tony Abbott, captivated the audience's attention, shedding light on the evolving dynamics of regional geopolitics and the need for strategic partnerships in the Indo-Pacific region.

Praising India as a leader of the global south, Tony Abbott said, “After several decades of ‘License Raj’, India is now roaring down the runway to economic take-off”.

The first-panel discussion, ‘Not an Era of War: India as a Global Peace Catalyst’, featured distinguished speakers including Velina Tchakarova, Mariya Ahmed Didi, and Syed Akbaruddin, exploring India's role as a harbinger of peace and stability in the global arena.

Also conducted was a panel on ‘AI: The Promise and Pitfalls’, featuring experts like Samsung research director Alok Shukla, Stanford Prof. Anurag Mairal, Reliance Jio AI/ML chief data scientist Shailesh Kumar, Microsoft executive director Samik Roy and entrepreneur and film producer Jonathan Bronfman, discussing the promise and pitfalls of AI technology. The panel examined the transformative potential of AI in various sectors while addressing concerns related to ethics, privacy, and job displacement.

This was followed by a panel discussion on ‘Startup, India: Scale up and Sustain’, which saw 108 capital founding partner Sushma Kaushik, Mamaearth co-founder Ghazal Alagh, NoBroker co-founder Akhil Gupta and Amul MD Jayen Mehta discuss the startup boom in India, and the many challenges that lie ahead for these young firms in their bid to stand on their own two feet.

Subsequent sessions included keynote interviews with Union Ministers like Smt. Smriti Irani on ‘Naari Shakti’, Ashwini Vaishnaw on ‘Infra, Investment and IT’ in India, and Dr S. Jaishankar on ‘Rise of the Global South’.

Praising the ground India has managed to cover in terms of women’s emancipation across the last decade, union minister Smriti Irani said, “What India does today, the world does tomorrow. What India has done significantly for gender is make a case for women who are emancipated across all walks of life”.

Union minister Ashwini Vaishnaw was also confident about the trajectory the nation is taking, and talked about the need to make technology available to the masses, saying, “Technology has to be democratised. It should be available to every Indian citizen”.

Speaking about the leadership of the global south that India has displayed, external affairs minister Dr S Jaishankar said, “When we spoke to the G20, we were not only speaking on behalf of India … we also had 125 countries who said ‘speak for us’. ”

Interspersed among these interviews were fireside chats with eminent personalities, including youth icon Ayushmann Khurrana, BharatPe chairman Rajnish Kumar, Zydus Wellness CEO Tarun G. Arora, Maruti Suzuki chairman R. C. Bhargava, Mahindra and Mahindra MD Dr Anish Shah, actress Kangana Ranaut and with Dr Vivek Lall, chief executive of General Atomics Global Corporation.

Discussing the untapped potential of corporate India in a panel on ‘Creating an Equitable Boardroom’ were supreme court advocate Menaka Guruswamy, Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas managing partner Pallavi Shroff, TeamLease co-founder Rituparna Chakraborty and policy researcher and corporate advisor Dr Srinath Sridharan.

Shortly after, American sociologist Salvatore Babones, author Vikram Sampath, former minister of external affairs Salman Khurshid and Penguin Random House Sr VP Milee Ashwarya engaged in a round table discussion on the narratives about the new India and India of the past, in ‘Setting the Record Straight’.

Delivering the summit keynote address on the theme of ‘India: Poised for the Next Big Leap’ was prime minister Narendra Modi, who graced the occasion and spoke about the strides India has taken in the decade gone by, and those he hopes India will take in the run-up to its centennial anniversary of independence.