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PlatForm Lecture Series (PLS) – Ansal University, Gurgaon

Platform Lecture Series (PLS) is a unique initiative by Ansal University where eminent thought leaders and Industry stalwarts address students and faculty to give insightful talks on a number of issues affecting our world.

So far, following distinguished personalities have visited AU campus under this Lecture Series:

S. No. Month Date Speaker Organization Title of talk
AU/2012/01 September 25.09.2012 Mr. Raj Jain President, Walmart India & MD & CEO, Bharti Walmart Pvt. Ltd., FDI in Retail- Issues & Perspective
AU/2012/02 October 29.10.2012 Sh. Anil Kumar Rao Jt. Commissioner of Police, Gurgaon Role of the Youth in Crime Prevention and Law Enforcement
AU/2012/03 November 09.11.2012 Sri. S. K. Munjal Chairman of Hero MotoCorp India’s Growth Story and Vision for the Future
AU/2013/04 January 11.01.2013 Advocate Lata Krishnamurti Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of India Women Safety & their Rights
AU/2013/05 January 31.01.2013 Dr. HK Chopra Sr. Consultant Cardiologist Moolchand Medcity and President, World Heart Academy Youth’s Lifestyle & Healthy Heart:  A Need of the Hour
AU/2013/06 March 22.02.2013 Gurmeet Singh MD,  Gurind Glass Glass Manufacture and Practice
AU/2013/07 April 16.04.2013 Mr. Sachit Jain Executive Director, Vardhman Group Leadership
AU/2013/08 August 02.08.2013 Mr. Hafeez Contractor Owner, Architect Hafeez Contractor firm Architecture Forever
AU/2013/9 October 17.10.2013 Ar. Dikshu Kukreja Architect, Urbanist and Owner of C P Kukreja Associates Architecture – Let’s Get Thinking
AU/2013/10 November 06.11.2013 Sri. Joginder Singh, IPS (Retd.) Former Director, CBI, India How to excel in Life and Career
AU/2013/11 November 22.11.2013 Ms. Priya Khanna Art Restorer Introduction To Art Restoration
AU/2014/12 January 21.01.2014 Mr. Rajan Anandan MD & VP, Google India Internet in India
AU/2014/13 February 20.02.2014 Mr. Jaime de Miguel Architect New Paradigms in Design and Fabrication
AU/2014/14 March 28.03.2014 Mr. Raj Biyani MD, Microsoft India Lessons from a passage to America & India
AU/2014/15 October 30.10.2014 Lt. Gen. Syed Ata Hasnain, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, SM, VSM & BAR Retired Indian Army General Officer Testing Leadership in Turbulent Environment
AU/2014/16 November 13.11.2014 Mr. Abhishek Somany Joint Managing Director, Somany Ceramics Ltd Ceramic Odyssey – Tiles & Beyond
AU/2015/17 September 21.09.2015 Mr.Navin Piplani Architecture-Engineering-Management Conservation of Taj Mahal: Linking Architecture-Engineering-Management
AU/2015/18 November 04.11.2015 Ms. Raseel Gujral Ansal Renowned designer, Casa Paradox Creative Paradoxes with Raseel Gujral
AU/2016/19 February 03.02.2016 IPS Mr. Navdeep Singh Virk Commissioner of Police Gurgaon  ‘UDAAN’, an employment linked skill training program for under-privileged youth
AU/2016/20 April 04.04.2016 Mr. Chetan Bhagat Popular Author How to be a Super Achiever
AU/2016/21 April 29.04.2016 Ms.Ritu Beri Fashion Designer Passion for Fashion
AU/2016/22 September 23.09.2016 Dr. Gerhard Van Rensburg Renowned Thought Leader and Leadership Coach Leadership Theories and Practices
AU/2016/23 October 10.10.2016 Professor Peter Briscoe Chair, Wine Business of the Vancouver Island University, Canada Emerging Trends in Hospitality
AU/2016/24 November 25.11.2016 Mr. Pavan Choudary Author and Managing Director, Vygon India Wisdom: Source of Wealth and Power



Title of the talk: Value of  Rule of Law in Democracy


Hon’ble Mohan Peiris, has been appointed as the 44th Chief Justice of Sri Lanka on 15th January 2013. His Lordship was the Attorney General of Sri Lanka from 2008 to 2011 and became the Senior Legal Advisor to the Cabinet of Ministers in 2011

Justice Mohan Pieris was admitted as an Attorney-at-Law to the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka in 1975 and as Solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales in 1978.

In 1981 he joined the Attorney General’s Department as a State Counsel and retired as Senior State Counsel in 1996.

He practiced for a period of 15 years in civil, public law and arbitration. During this time he trained at the National Institute of Trial Advocacy at Harvard Law School, the Centre for Police and Criminal Justice Studies at Jesus College, Cambridge and at George Washington University.

He has been on several Sri Lanka delegations to international forums: The United Nations Human Rights Council, United Nations Environmental Program, South Asian Agency for Regional Cooperation in Law and Tariff Negotiations with the European Commission.

Rule of Law means that Law is supreme and is above every individual. No individual whether if he is rich, poor, rulers or ruled etc are above law and they should obey it. In a narrower sense the rule of law implies that government authority may only be exercised in accordance with the written laws, which were adopted through an established procedure. The principle of Rule of Law is intended to be a safeguard against arbitrary actions of the government authorities. The concept of “Rule of Law” is the building block on which the modern democratic society is founded. Laws are made for the welfare of the people to maintain harmony between the conflicting forces in society. One of the prime objects of making laws is to maintain law and order in society and develop a peaceful environment for the progress of the people. The concept of Rule of Law plays an important role in this process.

Why should one attend this event?
For a lawyer and a layman alike, one of the hardest questions to answer is “What is law”. Is law simply a set of rules that everyone is bound by? Such a simplistic answer would not do justice to the nuanced framework that the law represents. As a concept and a phenomenon, the rule of law is a system that exists to set limits on human civilization and the entities that govern such civilizations. Regardless of your understanding of the law or even willingness to adhere to it, the rule of law is what makes the world function smoothly and keep us from reverting to a state of feral existence. This speech on the rule of law will be a simple but riveting exploration of one of the fundamental building blocks of a democracy; the rule of law. We will look at the past, the present and the future of our country through the perspective of Justice Mohan Peiris who was entrusted with being the guardian of the concept of rule of law in Sri Lanka during his tenure as the Chief Justice.




Title of the talk: Wisdom: Source of Wealth and Power


Mr. Pavan Choudary, renowned author and Managing Director of Vygon India shared his pearls of wisdom on the topic “Wisdom: Source of Wealth and Power” under the aegis of Platform Lecture series at Ansal University on 25November2016. He deliberated upon the quintessential meaning of wisdom in discretion and discrimination of good and evil. From his rich repository of knowledge he delineated the philosophies of Confucius, Buddha and also shared some of his own experiences and stories which made the session highly interactive and interesting.
The erudite speaker enlightened the audience by his rich insights on how wisdom can be attained by maintaining balanced growth in life. The balance lies in equanimity, walking on the middle path and balancing between human relationships. He also emphasized that virtuous people should empower themselves with their courage and conviction. He delved deep on the theories of wisdom which enunciate that good and bad person should be blessed or cursed equally.
The session concluded with pertinent discussion and questions.





Title of the talk: Emerging Trends in Hospitality


Professor Peter Briscoe, Chair, Hospitality Management, who also happens to be the Chair, Wine Business of the Vancouver Island University, Canada, visited the Ansal University to deliver a lecture on the Emerging Trends in Hospitality. This audio-visual presentation, though directed primarily towards the hotel management students, actually turned out to be an interesting discourse for the other students pursuing business management studies.

Peter, as he preferred being addressed to, has more than 3 decades of experience in hotels and in academics. He is a perfect mélange of a professional who is not only experienced in hotel operations but also has taught the dynamics of hospitality management to thousands of students. He is a certified Sommelier, a title which still remains but a dream with so many hotel professionals.
The main purpose of Peter’s presentation was to show to the students the best practices being used by renowned hotel chains like Starwood, Marriott, Hilton etc. What Peter emphasized on was that the trend in hospitality is drifting more towards ‘hiring the right people for the right jobs’. The customer needs are changing all the time – they are attaching more importance to being recognized and expect rather a personalized service than the usual as the choice and competition in hotels is increasing day by day. The discerning customers are emphasizing more on being dealt by quality personnel in hotels, restaurants, bars, room service and housekeeping. The audio-visual presentation revealed interesting facts about how the décor and ambience in modern hotels is biased towards simplicity and the ‘Green Concept’. He said the customers also prefer patronizing the hotels which work towards environment protection and believe in the doctrine of Renovate, Recycle and Reuse.

After the presentation, it was an ‘open house’ wherein Peter took questions from the students and answered them to their satisfaction.

Later on, for lunch, the first year students of School of Tourism and Hotel Management, Ansal University treated Peter to an authentic North Indian ‘Thali Lunch’, which he appreciated from the bottom of his heart.






Title of the talk:Leadership Theories and Practices


Under the aegis of Platform Lecture Series, Dr. Gerhard Van Rensburg, renowned Thought Leader and Leadership Coach, enlightened the audience with his scholarly insights on the leadership theories and practices, on Friday, September 23, 2016. He began his power packed discourse with an emphasis on holistic leadership, highlighted the need to amalgamate eastern and western leadership theories. He delineated his famous 32 leadership principles, leading from self and leading others. Dr. Rensburg reflected the thought that true leadership is built on personal growth else it is nothing but position, ego building and tactics of manipulation. A true leader exerts the strong impact and influence by empowering others and making them a part of the journey. An authentic leadership lies in unlocking the potential of others and stepping ahead in to an unknown territory with courage and confidence. The eminent speaker stressed on leadership from inside out and not outside in.

Leading people in a moral and ethical ways paves the path of enriching people and their thought processes, ultimately leading to their growth and holistic development. He enumerated that people need to be empowered to bring their best and unfold their best potential.

The session ended with a vote of thanks and felicitation of the esteemed guests by the Honorable Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Raj S. Dhankar, who in his Welcome Address shared insights into the significance of leadership in academia.







Title of the talk:Passion for Fashion


Date:29 April 2016

Sushant School of Design, Ansal University had the pleasure of hosting India’s first lady of fashion, Ms. Ritu Beri at its campus on April 29, 2016, under the aegis of Platform Lecture Series of the Institution. Ms. Beri is the mentor of the Fashion and Textile programme at the Sushant School of Design (SSD) and is an Advisory Board member of the School. On her maiden visit to the University, she announced the Best Student Award for the most promising student of the Design School. She also offered three top students the opportunity to work with her. She spoke on her passion for fashion and had a very interactive session with the students and faculty members. She advised the young students to be open to life and be passionate about whatever they do. She said that the state of mind of an individual should be his inspiration. Her presence at the campus was a big moment for the entire design fraternity, who look up to her as a style icon.





Title of the talk:How to be a Super Achiever


Date:04 April 2016

Under the aegis of Platform Lecture Series, the very popular author, Mr. Chetan Bhagat visited Ansal University Gurgaon and interacted with students. He spoke on “How to be a Super Achiever”. His session was not only inspiring but he also kept the audience in good spirits. He spoke of the importance of having long-effort goals and the need to under promise but over-deliver. He advised the young students to have patience to achieve their passion. He shared examples from his own life on how he quit his banking career to devote his entire time to writing, which was his passion since his early college days. He strongly propagated the concept of the setback dealing mechanism which motivated them not to give up and to have faith in themselves. He has carved out a niche for himself as a leading author in the literary circles, all due to his determination to achieve his dream. He ended the session with his popular quote: Be so busy in improving yourself, that you have no time to criticize others.





Title of the talk:”UDAAN’, an employment linked skill training program for under-privileged youth


Date:3 February 2016

In continuation of the Platform Lecture series a unique initiative of Ansal University Mr.Navdeep Virk discussed and shared some innovative and out of box ideas and their implementation that revolutionized and brought about some significant changes in the smooth functioning of police system. He reflected his concerns over some of the challenges and goofups such as shortage of man power, poor traffic management and involvement of underprivileged youth in the criminal activities. Consequently he discussed some unique initiatives being taken. One of that initiative was launching of community policing program called ‘Community policing 2.0’ which aims at involving participation of residents and corporate houses in non core police activities such as traffic management and neighborhood watch schemes.
Mr.Virk also enlightened the audience on the measures to reduce the traffic congestion on Gurgaon roads and to educate the civilians regarding the traffic regulations along with some initiatives like joy of giving, and car free day campaign.
Mr.Virk also shared a unique initiative UDAAN’, an employment linked skill training program for under-privileged youth.The speaker also highlighted the complainant feedback campaign which aimed at the dialogue with several stakeholders for the better implementation of law and order.





Title of the talk:”Conservation of Taj Mahal: Linking Architecture-Engineering-Management”


Date:21 September 2015
In the series of Platform lectures on 21-9-2015 Mr.Navin Piplani, delivered a lecture on “Conservation of Taj Mahal: Linking Architecture-Engineering-Management” on September 21, 2015 at Ansal University. Taj Mahal, is a world heritage site and a major tourist destination in the country. The talk centered on the multidisciplinary efforts for conservation of Taj, a world heritage site and a major tourist destination and structures around it. Navin detailed out the process explaining the involvement of managers, engineers and architects at various stages of the conservation and emphasized on revival of art of working with traditional materials like stone and lime. The lecture sensitisized the students to role of heritage structures in present day contexts.

Navin Piplani is a conservation architect, Vice President of ICOMOS, currently appointed as Principal Director of INTACH Heritage Academy, New Delhi. He took up this post after the completion of his role as the Hamlyn-Feilden Fellow and Director of Studies at the Centre for Conservation Studies, Department of Archaeology, The University of York, UK. Navin also runs his architecture conservation practice in Delhi and has acquired knowledge, expertise and skills by working on a range of projects in India and Europe. Since 2002, he has been working as a core member of the Taj Mahal Conservation Collaborative, a multi-disciplinary team of heritage professionals, engaged in the conservation of the World Heritage Site of Taj Mahal. In 2004, Navin assisted Professor A.G. Krishna Menon, an eminent conservationist, for the preparation of the INTACH Charter for the Conservation of Unprotected Architectural Heritage and Sites in India.





Title of the talk: “Ceramic Odyssey- Tiles & Beyond”


Date: 13th, November 2014

As a part of the Platform Lecture Series being organised by the Ansal University, Mr. Abhishek Somany, Joint Managing Director of Somany Ceramics Ltd., delivered a talk on “Ceramic Odyssey – Tiles & Beyond” sharing his rich experience in the Ceramic Industry and International Marketing. The enlightening talk introduced to the audience not only some of the new age technology Somany has brought to the Indian market including Slip shields (patented), Germ free and Industrial tiles, but has also given an insight to the future of tile making. The introduction to evolution of Ceramic tile Industry through centuries from Mesopotamian civilization to the present day technology driven production enriched the audience with a less known story. Some of the ground breaking products under research or implementation across the world like tiles producing electricity using kinetic energy (walkers), solar tiles and active tiles (that expunge nitrogen from air improving oxygen content) amazed the audience.

The presentation summed up with the acknowledgement that ceramics are a part of our lives from being used in mobile phones to space shuttles, clearly indicating it being the preferred material in the future. Being in the tile industry for decades, tapping the potential of a material and introducing state of art technology in India, Somany Ceramics also gives back to the society through an active training effort under their CSR Programme. As a part of their ‘Tile Master Programme’, masons are professionally trained in state of the art workmanship for tile laying, equipping them to improve their productivity rate by 25% and reducing the wastage by 50%. The session concluded with an interactive dialogue between participants and Mr. Somany regarding various aspects of ceramic tiles from manufacturing, customisation, recycling, and innovation through exterior cladding use.




Title of the talk: ‘Testing Leadership in Turbulent Environment ‘


Date: October 30, 2014

Lt Gen Syed Ata Hasnain, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, SM, VSM & BAR , a retired Indian Army General Officer delivered a high impact lecture on ‘Testing Leadership in Turbulent Environment ‘. The lecture began with credos of martyred soldiers of Indian army who immortalized their name in the pages of history with their indomitable and daunting spirit. The speaker emphatically asserted that in the transition period India needs leaders of substance and with hawk like vision to lead the nation.

Lt Gen Hasnain stressed on the importance of perseverance and shares the view of considering every failure as a stepping stone on the path of success. He shared the five C’s or the five mantras of great leadership- Character, Courage, Competence, Commitment and Compassion. Retention of Faith at the cost of ones life and maintenance of ones reputation should be their driving force. Excellence is attainable, he said, and hence the thirst for excellence should be insatiable for the pursuit for perfection is impossible. Progressive development in leadership from being anonymous to winning laurels in life is possible only through toiling, incessant efforts and a penchant to achieve nothing but the best. Leaders are not born they evolve from testing situations. In his point of view people with emotional intelligence, courage to experiment and possessing essential humanity prove to be great leaders. Leaders are put through a lot of stress and hence can cope with it and failure only with the help of a positive attitude. He invoked the youth of today to emerge as new ‘You’, refrain from cursing and ranting and ascertain their comfort zone. In the current scenario when the media pressure and intrusion is humongous it becomes all the more important to reckon it in positive stride.




Title of the talk: ‘Architecture Forever’


Date: 2 August, 2013




Title of the talk: ‘Lessons from a passage to America & India’


Date: 28 March, 2013




Title of the talk: ‘Glass Manufacture and Practice’


Date: 22 February, 2013