By Our Business Correspondent
Meet Mrs. Sushma Berlia, the soft-spoken President of the Apeejay Stya Group. The Group has been by now accepted a top ranking business house with in India and its wings spread across the globe. Mrs. Berlia has been leading the group from the front since joined the top management in 1989 and could successfully steer ahead the Business house to envying heights with her exceptional business acumen.
Mrs. Berlia, thanks to her encouraging leadership and brilliant management skills, could bring laurels to the Apeejay Stya Group in more than one way. A part of the larger Svran Group, Apeejay Satya has successfully diversified in India & abroad, including Pharmaceuticals & Life Sciences, Chemicals & Plastics, Real Estate & Development, International Trading & Distribution, Information Technology, Financial Services, Merchant Banking and Publishing. She has also expanded the Group’s social commitment, the Apeejay Education Society, to over 12 schools and 17 institutions of higher learning, providing high quality affordable education to over 32,000 students across the country, right from Pre-Nursery to Doctoral levels.
Mrs. Berlia plays a leading role in the Indian pharmaceutical industry and has been actively involved in taking up various important issues like drug norms, price regulations etc. She was nominated to represent India at the ‘Commission of Biotech Society’ by the International Chamber of Commerce. She was also nominated to represent OPPI in the Internet Task Force of the IFPMA (International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association).
Mrs. Berlia became the President of the PHD Chamber of Commerce & Industry [PHDCCI] in its 101st year. On taking over the reins of the PHDCCI as President in Dec 2005, she became the first-ever lady in history to head a leading multi-state Apex Chamber of Commerce in India.
Mrs. Berlia was awarded the PHD Chamber Outstanding Businesswomen Award 2008 at the PHD Chamber Annual Awards for Excellence 2008 for her achievements as a leading woman entrepreneur and industrialist. The selection was made by a Jury of eight distinguished member of society chaired by Justice R.C. Lahoti, Former Chief Justice of India. The “International Congress of Women 2009” has also conferred on Mrs. Sushma Berlia the ‘International Lifetime Achievement Award 2009’. She has also been honoured by the Punjab Technical University in 2005, for her contributions in the field of Biotechnology, Life Sciences, Research and Education at all levels with sustained Industry-Academia collaboration.
Presented the business perspective of “The impact & challenges of the Global Economic crisis on Investment & Employment in India/South Asia” at the DFID Retreat, London in July ’09
Mrs. Berlia is deeply passionate about the cause of education. As Vice-President of the Apeejay Education Society which runs 12 Schools and 17 institutions of Higher Learning in India with more than 32,000 students on rolls, she has made outstanding contribution in ensuring that Apeejay vision of ‘Quality education leading to man-making and nation building’ is reflected in the conceptualization and standardization of academic programs and curricula across in all its institutions. She has ensured that the Apeejay institutions adopt inclusiveness through value-based education, scholarships and special provisions for the differently-abled, to help absorb them into the mainstream.
Mrs. Berlia has represented India at the UN World Social Summit held at Copenhagen , Denmark, in 1995, at the invitation of the International Chamber of Commerce and International Organization of Employers, and delivered a speech on the ‘Role of Women at the Work Place’.
Mrs. Berlia has been at the forefront of pursuing reforms in higher, technical and professional education in the country. She has published numerous papers on higher education reforms and has taken up the issues of access, equity, quality and innovation at various education forums, both in India and abroad.