JBIMS, Mumbai Hosts Ms. Meera Sanyal, Chairperson and Country Executive, RBS

 | May 22,2010 04:14 pm IST

Continuing with the tradition of hosting thought leaders on campus, the students at Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies had an interactive session with Ms. Meera Sanyal, Chairperson and Country Executive for ABN AMRO Bank (now RBS - The Royal Bank of Scotland) in India.



Earlier she had been the Chief Operations Officer for the Asia Pacific region. She is well known for her interest in developmental politics and had won the hearts of her constituents in South Mumbai when she had contested the Lok Sabha election.


Ms. Meera Sanyal started by sharing with the students the issues facing the financial community - both world-over as well as in India. The black swan events of the recent past and its foreseeable implications were discussed. She followed up by articulating the world of possibilities India could explore to achieve inclusive growth. She warned against adopting an attitude of looking towards the government to solve their problems by reminding the students that it would be their generation that would bear the consequences of the actions taken today.




An area very dear to her has been ABN AMRO's Corporate Social Responsibility activities. The Foundation, which Ms. Sanyal chairs, undertakes several projects that aim to alleviate poverty and conserve biodiversity (especially in endangered tiger habitats). Initiatives that work to promote watersheds and sequester carbon by working with tribals and marginal farmers in degraded land areas have also been undertaken.


Ms. Sanyal was of the opinion that micro-finance could propel the next wave of growth in rural India. She urged the government to encourage and create a clime favourable for entrepreneurship. "India has enterprising people, help and make it easier for them to set up their own enterprise at all levels. There is great demand in this country and there is great supply too, but they aren't meeting each other". She opined that there were numerous Indian entrepreneurs waiting by the sidelines, shackled only by the bureaucracy and the endless red tape.


                                              Ms. Meera Sanyal Interacting with students at JBIMS, Mumbai

Questions on her Lok Sabha campaign were inevitable. The students were all ears to find out about the experiences she had while contesting the elections. Ms. Meera Sanyal shared her thoughts as well the hardships faced by some of the constituents in her ward. She strongly felt that empowerment and accountability at the local level was the need of the hour. The students concurred with her reasoning and were won over by the passion and sense of conviction with which she spoke, inciting them to move from the realm of armchair politicians and play a decisive role in shaping the nation's future.