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Public Policy Forum: Australia, India and the Global Covid-19 Pandemic

Public Policy Forum: Australia, India and the Global Covid-19 Pandemic

Event Venue:

Deakin Downtown 727 Collins StreetDocklands, VIC, 3008, Australia ( Map )

The date for this event is to be confirmed, please check back for details. The event will be accessible in person and online.

Australia, India and the Global Covid-19 Pandemic: Remembering forgotten citizens, helping neighbours and friends  

Young, well-educated and over 700,000 strong, the Indian-Australia community is one of Australia’s largest and most vibrant communities.  A further 100,000 plus Indians are living and studying in Australian universities and colleges, making a vital contribution to Australian society.  But now 9,000 Indian-Australians are currently in India and unable to return home. As India faces a humanitarian crisis of staggering dimensions, and transnational families struggle to help those left behind, many are asking whether they are being forgotten and whether in Australia all citizens are truly equal.

You can attend this event either in person at Deakin Downtown, or tune in via Zoom webinar.


After some brief presentations and discussion between the panellists, you will have the opportunity to ask questions of the panel, whether you are in the room or tuning in via Zoom.


Dr Ranjana Srivastava OAM

Dr. Ranjana Srivastava is an oncologist, Fulbright scholar and award-winning writer. She is a regular columnist for The Guardian, where she writes on the intersection of medicine and humanity. She has been a two-time finalist for the Walkley Award for Excellence in Journalism. After a global upbringing and education in India, the United Kingdom and the United States, Ranjana graduated from Monash University Medicine with honours. She has practiced in the public health system for two decades and is the recipient of many awards including the Monash University Distinguished Alumna of the Year, the Human Rights Literature Prize, and a Medal of The Order of Australia for her contribution to doctor-patient communication. This May, Ranjana graduated with a masters degree in public administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government where she was the recipient of a John F Kennedy Merit Award and an Australian-American Fulbright award.



Tarang Chawla

Tarang Chawla is a writer, anti-violence campaigner, mental health and gender equality advocate. He is a suicide survivor, storyteller and trainee lawyer using his voice to serve the community and champion human rights.  Tarang founded the Not One More Niki movement – Australia’s largest campaign to end violence against women in culturally diverse communities, named after his younger sister Nikita who was murdered in 2015. Tarang is an exceptional communicator and facilitator, having delivered large and niche public engagement initiatives. Tarang has represented Victoria at the Council of Australian Government (COAG) and has received multiple honours for his work, including: Young Australian of the Year Finalist; University of Melbourne Rising Star Award Winner; AFL Community Champion Award Winner; India-Australia Young Community Achiever of the Year; Top 25 Most Influential Australians working for Social Change (Pro Bono Australia).



Professor Catherine Bennett

Professor Catherine Bennett is the inaugural chair in Epidemiology and head of Deakin Epidemiology, a research unit within the Determinants of Health group in the Institute for Health Transformation.  Professor Bennett has a distinguished career in public health practice, research, academic governance and teaching. Catherine joined Deakin in 2009 after more than eight years with the University of Melbourne as Associate Professor in Epidemiology.  Prior to that, Catherine worked with the New South Wales and Victorian State Governments in a variety of senior positions.



Dr Achinto Roy

Dr Achinto Roy lectures in management at the Deakin Business School. In February 2021, he authored a research report on trade development between India and Australia titled How Indian companies can play a pivotal role in the supply chain to Australia’, which explores the potential for growing people- to-people connections between the nations in the wake of the pandemic (published and funded by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India). He is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Australia and New Zealand. He has published in Business Ethics Quarterly, Business History and Studies in Higher Education.



Professor Greg Barton (moderator)

Prof Greg Barton is Research Professor in Global Islamic Politics at the Alfred Deakin Institute, and Senior Fellow at Hedayah, Abu Dhabi. Greg is a regular media commentator on matters of national security and violent extremism in Australia and abroad.


The Alfred Deakin Institute Policy Forums aim to provide a high-profile platform for the Institute to bring together policy makers, researchers and community members for informed debate on important emerging policy issues. They foster informed debate, engage the public and provide research-led input to policy formation at national, State and regional levels.


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