Who are the five Indian-origin young guns that made it to 2021 TIME100 Next?
Among 100 promising world leaders, five Indian-origin personalities were also named - Apoorva Mehta, Shikha Gupta, Rohan Pavuluri, Shekhar Aazad, and Rishi Sunak.
On Wednesday, the 2021 TIME100 Next - an expansion of TIME's flagship TIME100 franchise – was released. The annual list essentially highlights 100 emerging leaders. In a blog on TIMEs’ titled ‘How We Chose the 2021 TIME100 Next,’ Dan Macsai, editorial director of the TIME100 said, “Everyone on this list is poised to make history… And in fact, many already have.”
In a proud moment, among 100 promising world leaders, five Indian-origin personalities were also named - Apoorva Mehta, Shikha Gupta, Rohan Pavuluri, Shekhar Aazad, and Rishi Sunak.
Founder and chief executive of San Francisco grocery delivery start-up Instacart, Apoorva Mehta is born in India and raised in Canada. After his stints with Blackberry, Qualcomm, and Amazon, in 2010, Mehta quit his job and launched Instacart.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, his grocery delivery start-up faced a tidal wave of orders. According to the TIME’s website, Mehta, the company’s 34-year-old founder, and CEO calls that period a “wartime moment.”
Introduced by Alejandro de la Garza on the website, Mehta is quoted as saying, “The smartphone is the supermarket of the future.” His start-up’s Twitter account proudly shared the news of Mehta being selected by TIME.The tweet said, “We're honored to see our founder and CEO @apoorva_mehta has been selected by @TIME for their “TIME 100 Next List” - an annual list of 100 individuals globally who are shaping the future of their fields.”
Based out of Washington, Dr Shikha Gupta was one of the first volunteers and is now the executive director of the Get Us PPE organization. According to the TIME’s website, she has helped distribute more than 6.5 million pieces of PPE kits to frontline workers.
An introduction to Shikha, Democratic Congressman from New Jersey, US, Kim wrote for the magazine’s website, “In a crisis, small acts can make a big impact. And in extraordinary times, ordinary people, driven by service, can do extraordinary things.”
A blog on Get Us PPE’s website mentions that Shikha has worked towards the intersection of medicine, public health policy, and technology. She, reportedly, is a passionate advocate for health equity, who believes that citizens hold the power to affect policy changes.
Shikha expressed her happiness in a tweet, which said, “Incredibly honored to be on @TIME’s 2021 #TIME100Next list alongside so many unbelievable specimens of humanity. Deeply grateful to my supportive, brilliant, hilarious team at @GetUsPPE for their thousands of hours of hard work- we’re just getting started, y’all White heart (sic)”.
Harvard graduate Rohan Pavuluri is CEO and co-founder of Upsolve - one of the US's leading resources that help low-income and working-class families overcome financial distress.
His introduction on TIME by Mariah Espada mentions that in 2018, a 25-year-old Rohan Pavuluri founded Upsolve, a free online tool that helps users fill out bankruptcy forms on their own. To date, Upsolve has helped US users relieve more than $300 million in debt.
Taking to LinkedIn, Pavuluri said, “I'm lucky to have the best team, funders, and community of users in the world at Upsolve. I'm proud of what we've all built together, the millions of lives we've touched, and where we're headed. Thank you to the village that has supported us since Day 1. Honored to be on the 2021 #TIME100NEXT list alongside so many names I look up to.”
Chandra Shekhar Aazad
On their Facebook wall, @BhimArmyOfficial proudly posted about their leader, Chandra Shekhar Aazad’s global recognition. The post said, “He continues to fight against oppression. He has never been afraid, never stopped, nor bowed down @BhimArmyChief Chandrashekhar Azad is a good leader and a good leader. The whole world has accepted that.”
As introduced by Billy Perrigo, Chandra Shekhar Aazad leads the Bhim Army in the country. The organisation’s mission is "Direct action based on confrontation to preserve or restore the dignity of Dalit."
The 34-year-old runs schools to help Dalits escape poverty through education. His introduction on TIME’s website further mentions that Aazad lent his support to several other progressive movements, including recently to farmers protesting against new farm laws.
The description further mentions that despite Bhim Army’s muscular stance, the young leader has also cultivated an aura of charismatic approachability through deft use of social media; even Aazad’s luxuriant mustache—a style seen by some dominant castes as a status symbol—is a form of resistance
A resident of Kirby Sigston, outside Northallerton in the UK, Rishi Sunak leads Britain’s Treasury. On the official website of the Member of the Parliament, Lord William Hague of Richmond was quoted praising the young leader, “He is an exceptional individual and I believe he will continue to be a strong and effective advocate for our community.”
Sunak’s website mentions that he has graduated from Winchester College, Oxford University, and Stanford University, and lived in California, US for a few years.
Billy Perrigo on TIME’s website introduced Sunak and mentioned Sunak remains the country’s most popular politician, according to the pollster YouGov. And he’s the oddsmakers’ favourite to be Britain’s next Prime Minister.
(With inputs from time.com)