The in depth reportage and information in Citizen Matters is brought to you by an eclectic team of veterans as well as young journalists, contributing in various capacities.

Apekshita Varshney

Apekshita Varshney is a journalist with a keen interest in urbanism. She has a BA in Mass Media from Mumbai University. She was a fellow at the Indian Institute for Human Settlements’ Urban Fellowship Programme. 

She frequently writes about the challenges and opportunities in Indian cities, especially Mumbai. Apekshita has worked on campaigns to improve urban governance and liveability with nonprofits and governmental organisations. In her free time, she likes to play tennis and write fiction.

Arathi Manay Yajaman

Arathi Manay Yajaman supports the Mumbai chapter of Citizen Matters as a Community Anchor. She is also a market research professional and financial consultant, and has rich experience in local civic matters and community volunteering – citizens’ problems, apartment management, waste management, lake management and the like. 

She was a national-level basketball player in her college days and still participates in veterans basketball and athletics. 

Aruna Natarajan

Aruna Natarajan is a Staff Reporter at Citizen Matters. She lives in Chennai and writes about everyday issues and the systems that contribute to them through an urban lens.  Aruna is an Economics graduate and has a Post Graduate Diploma in Journalism from the Asian College of Journalism.

Before moving to civic journalism, she enjoyed stints at a think-tank and an NGO working in sports for development. She is interested in politics, policy, sports and movies. She enjoys reading and playing fantasy football.

Bhanu Tej

N Bhanutej’s career in journalism spans 26 years, beginning with The Times of India, and across The Indian Express, The Week magazine, Al Jazeera and The Economic Times. As a member of The Week’s investigative team, he produced many talking-point cover stories: the hoax of narco-analysis, mysterious deaths in nuclear establishments, how Indira Gandhi hushed up a nuclear leak, illegal mining in Bellary, to name a few. As city editor with The Economic Times, he anchored coverage of civic issues for the business daily, an experiment that brought more readers to the paper. 

A keen photographer and wildlife watcher, he penned the script for ‘Wild Dog Diaries’, an award-winning documentary produced for the National Geographic channel in 2006. 

Bhavani Prabhakar

Bhavani Prabhakar is a staff reporter at Citizen Matters, Chennai. She is an alumnus of Madras Christian College and SRM Institute of Science and Technology. 

Besides reporting on the city’s issues, she is also interested in writing about people, heritage, art and culture and traditional livelihoods. Her hobbies include designing, experimenting with mandalas and reading.

Ekta Sawant

Ekta is the Engagement Lead at Citizen Matters. She closely tracks developments in the urban space and engages with voluntary organisations and civic action groups working in areas such as water and waste management, sustainability initiatives, migration, mobility, and livelihood. 

Ekta holds a Masters in Development from APU.  She enjoys working with young people and facilitates workshops and seminars in her free time. She also enjoys mobile photography, and boasting about Bengaluru’s gorgeous weather. 

Laasya Shekhar

Laasya is a Senior Reporter at Citizen Matters. Prior to this, she worked as a reporter with Deccan Chronicle. Laasya has written extensively on environmental issues, women and child rights, and other critical social and civic issues. A Masters in Journalism from Bharathiar University, she has been experimenting at Citizen Matters with diverse formats varying from photos, videos and infographics for an interactive content presentation. Laasya is most proud of her work on beach encroachment and lake pollution, which the NGT took suo moto cognizance of.

In her spare time, Laasya likes to play with her dogs, read and cook!

Navya PK

Navya has 12 years of experience in journalism, covering development, urban governance and education. She was earlier Senior Journalist, Citizen Matters, and Reporter, The New Indian Express. She has also freelanced for publications such as The News Minute, Factor Daily and India Together.

Navya won the All India Environment Journalism Award, 2013 for her investigative series on the environmental violations of an upcoming SEZ in Bengaluru, published in Citizen Matters. She also won the PII-UNICEF fellowship in 2016 to report on child rights in Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

Navya has an MA in Political Studies (JNU), and a PG Diploma from the Asian College of Journalism. She enjoys travelling and exploring new places, and is always looking for new interests to dabble in.

Raksha Kumar

Raksha Kumar is an award winning multimedia journalist, focusing on human rights and gender. Since 2011, she has reported from 11 countries across the world and a hundred districts in India. She is also a documentary filmmaker, a Fulbright Scholar and a Chevening Fellow. She was the joint winner of Chameli Devi Jain award, 2015-16 for her work on land acquisition and forest rights. 

Raksha is the Consulting Editor of our Mumbai Chapter, a role in which she intends to capture the Mumbai madness in its entirety.  She is a keen follower of interesting recipes and rare films

Rishabh Shrivastava

Rishabh is a law graduate from the University of Petroleum and Energy Studies, Dehradun, Uttarakhand. He has been writing extensively on urbanization, climate change, Himalayan environment and community rights. 

Rishabh is part of the Founding Team at Social Development for Communities (SDC) Foundation, Dehradun. He has campaigned on issues related to air pollution, plastic waste management, responsible tourism in mountains and civic reforms. Apart from cricket that he loves to play and talk about, Rishabh is a politics buff! 

Satarupa Bhattacharya

Satarupa has over 16 years of editorial and content experience across a variety of genres and formats. Apart from overall editorial oversight and participation in key editorial policy-making at Citizen Matters, she ideates, edits and occasionally writes stories for the National edition of the magazine. She is also presently the editor of the Chennai chapter. She holds a Masters degree in Economics from Calcutta University and keenly follows social and development initiatives across cities in India. 

Outside of work, Satarupa loves good old classical fiction and dabbling in culinary experiments. 

Siddhant Kalra

Siddhant Kalra is a writer and researcher interested in urban issues. He has a B.A. in Liberal Arts from FLAME University, Pune and is also an Urban Fellow from the Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS), Bengaluru. 

Siddhant wants to make Indian cities more resilient and less unequal, and hopes that he can make a difference through storytelling. In his free time, he likes to read, make music and play games.

T R Gopalakrishnan

T R Gopalakrishnan (TRG/Gopal) is the former Editor-In-Charge of The Week, the country’s leading English weekly newsmagazine, based in Cochin. During his 35-year stint at The Week, 29 of them as its editor, the magazine reached its highest ever circulation as per ABC. As the editor, he had overall responsibility for content selection and presentation, managing an all India editorial team of 90+ journalists. Prior to this, he worked at the Motherland, followed by stints at India Today and Hindustan Times.  

In his spare time, TRG likes to read and travel.