Major Puneet Bhardwaj
Director, School Programs
As Director of School Programs, Maj Puneet heads the project for creating a learning space that is empowering and inspirational. Supervising the student engagement program, Maj Puneet is working towards ensuring plentiful co-curricular opportunities for our children, including those in sports and performing arts. She also oversees parent relations at Ekya and is working to enhance student delight index at our schools.
Her forte is in developing an interesting mix of non-academic experience for students as an extension of their formal learning experience at school – one that allows students to fully explore and develop their strengths and talents.
Encouraging students to think beyond marks and ranks, Maj Puneet wishes to motivate and inspire the children of Ekya – to imbibe virtues of life, emphasizing on the importance of discipline, mental and physical fitness for all young learners.
In addition to her illustrious career with the Indian Army – being one of the few women to serve the Armed Forces, Maj Puneet also holds a degree from IIM-B. Her academic experience includes teaching at an MBA institute and working closely with an international school for a decade.
Director, New Initiatives
As the Director of New Initiatives, Mr. Saurabh Saxena leads the teacher development programme at Ekya. Spearheading the programme, Mr. Saurabh aims to bring in dedicated educators, aligned with Ekya vision of progressive learning and are skilled to create joyful, personalised and enriching learning experiences for learners.
Mr. Saurabh is passionate about building learning environments that personalize learning paths for children that are immersive, experiential and project-based. On discovering education as his true calling, he established his own educational institution, Lakshya that focussed on imparting highly personalized and engaging learning experiences for children. Mr. Saurabh has taught 5000 learners himself, trained more than 100 teachers and expanded the institute to 5 locations.
After Lakshya, Mr. Saurabh turned his attention to technology in education and founded Vedantu, an EdTech start-up that hosts live online learning courses across 34 countries, backed by industry leaders and funded by India’s top investors. A strong advocate of technology and its role in education, Mr. Saurabh believes in its powers to help our educators create an inclusive learning environment.
S. K. Balaraman
Head, Security and IT; Registrar, CMR University
Mr. Balaraman serves as the Director of Examinations, Systems and Security for CMR Group of Institutions, and as Registrar at CMR University. At Ekya, Mr. Balaraman ensures that high security measures are maintained. Having served in the uniformed services of the Central and State Governments for close to 35 years, Mr. Balaraman has acquired expertise in security and the implementation of technology. He was instrumental in the computerisation of the Karnataka State Police, making it a model State for the rest of the country to follow shortly after. He has also contributed to the Border Security Force, Special Protection Group, Karnataka State Police and to the Birla Institute of Technology at Mesra, Ranchi during his years of service.
Mr. Balaraman carries a B.E. in Mechanical Engineering from Madras University and an M.Sc. in Space Engineering and Rocketry from Ranchi University. He has also worked as the Vice President of Law Enforcement Solutions for 4G Identity Solutions in Hyderabad, looking after criminal identity solutions using fingerprint technology, and retired from the police force as the Inspector General of Police for the Karnataka State Police.
U. P. Shivaram Reddy
Chief Administrative Officer, CMR Group of Institutions
Mr. Reddy oversees all aspects concerning transportation and smooth functioning of ancillary services at CMR Groups of Institutions. He brings 39 years of dedicated service with the Karnataka State Police to enable efficient implementation of numerous Ekya processes. He has held many positions, including Superintendent of Police, Karnataka Lokayukta; and Superintendent of Police, Anti-Terrorist Cell, Bangalore. He has represented India in the United Nation Peacekeeping Mission in the Republic of Kosovo as a Civil Police Officer. Mr. Reddy has received the Chief Minister’s Police Medal in 1989, the President’s Medal for Meritorious Service in 2001, the United Nations Peacekeeping Force Medal in the Republic of Kosovo in 2003, and the President’s Police Medal for Distinguished Service in 2011.
Mr. Reddy carries a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Mysore, and a Bachelor of Law degree from Bangalore University. He is a passionate patron of organic and sustainable farming, and is an avid nature lover. Mr. Reddy enjoys classical Indian music.
Manager, Compliance and Processes
At Ekya, Ms. Prema Barman oversees Quality and Compliance, ensuring standardization and quality in various operational areas of our schools. Prior to Ekya, Ms. Barman served as a Senior Director of Operations at Capgemini and the Global Head of Operations at Thomas Reuters Pvt. Ltd. With an illustrious career spanning over 24 years, Ms. Barman’s forte lies in Operations Management, Process Management, and Client Servicing. This doting mother of two comes to the field of education with the objective of creating positive learning experiences for children as she believes that respecting students plays a crucial role in shaping them. A strong adherent of experiential teaching and visual lessons, Ms. Barman wants children to be able to apply what they learn in real-world situations.
Indukala Devi V.S.
Assistant Manager, Technology
Taking care of the Ekya website and coming to aid for any technical support, Ms. Indukala is meticulous with her work, ensuring everything is in place and done perfectly. Prior to her work at Ekya, she worked for over eight years as a software engineer.
Ms. Indukala holds a Bachelors in Technology, with a specialization in Information Technology from Kerala University. Ms. Indu is a trained Bharatanatyam dancer and a veena player. Her positive attitude and hard work make her an integral part of the Ekya family.
Head of Human Resources
With over eight years of experience in Human Resource, Juanita Stephens heads the HR department at Ekya Schools and CMR K-12.
A graduate from the University of Sunderland, Ms. Juanita has spent a chunk of her career in Australia, working closely within Melbourne’s aged-care sector – a stint she fondly remembers. Her wish to explore the other end of the spectrum saw her step into education with her role at Simplilearn, an edu-tech organization.
Ms. Juanita also holds an MBA from Manipal University, with a dual specialization in HR and Marketing.
Aparna Kiran Rao
Manager, Marketing and Communications
Ms. Aparna heads the Marketing and Communications team at Ekya Schools, leading brand strategy and its presence, both online and offline. Having been part of the advertising and marketing industry for over fifteen years, her career highlights include working at Ogilvy and Mather, and long stints at start-ups across the fields of healthcare, technology, education, and communication.
Passionate about building brands, it is her love for working with children that got her back into the education space, a field she believes is enterprising, dynamic and has extensive learning opportunities. A B.Sc graduate in Computers, Maths, and Statistics, Ms. Aparna holds a PGDM in Marketing from TA PAI Management Institute, also certified in Instructional Design and Digital Marketing.
Ms. Lalitha is part of the Ekya admissions team, administrating the schools’ admission process centrally. With over fifteen years of experience in the industry, Ms. Lalitha has served as a Relationship Officer and a PA to Principal at CBSE schools in Bangalore. She credits her role in education to her passion for creating learning environments for future leaders and changemakers. In her free time, Ms. Lalitha enjoys quilting and undertaking culinary experiments with new recipes.