about us


    Our Team

            Cast and Crew

            Advisory Board

    Our Story

Thane Richard, Founder and Executive Director

Thane founded Dabba Radio over the course of the second half of 2010 after witnessing the success of TiffinTalk.  Before Dabba Radio, Thane led a team that bicycled across the US from the Atlantic to the Pacific for affordable housing, tested fluid dynamics on NASA's fabled zero gravity plane, cowboyed on a ranch outside Yellowstone Park, and conducted oceanographic research on-board the SSV Corwith Cramer in the Caribbean. After traveling around India and doing a brief stint at St. Stephen's College in Delhi, Thane moved back to the subcontinent in June 2009 to work for the Mahindra Group. He has a B.A. from Brown University in Economics and Development Studies.

Pankaj Athwale, Studio Head and Host of Shot, Yaar!

Pankaj is the head of Mumbai University Student Radio, MUST 107.8, and oversees all production of content.  He also has years of experience in radio with All India Radio and as a sports commentator on contract for stations as far away as Toronto, Canada.  Pankaj oversees the production of our sports show as well as the broader content objectives of Dabba Radio.  He also manages our studio sharing with MUST.

Nonie Tuxen, Director of Outreach and Development

Nonie completed a Bachelor of Arts degree at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia in 2009. Her academic focus on International Studies and Gender Studies led to her discovering a lot about Indian culture; when she eventually returns to Australia she will further this by completing a Master in Asian Studies.  In 2010, Nonie came to Mumbai to work for an NGO and knew that she would be back. After learning about the ban on news and current events on private FM radio, Nonie found her reason to return to Mumbai and came to work for Dabba Radio.

Sucharita Tyagi, Host of The Underground Sound

Sucharita obtained a bachelor degree in journalism and mass communication from Delhi back in 2008. But it was in 2007 that her love affair with radio began. Having spent three years as a radio jockey on 93.5 Red FM and subsequently on 92.7 Big FM, she moved to Mumbai in July 2010 to pursue a Masters diploma in film and television studies at Xavier’s. While there, she heard about Dabba Radio and fell head over heels for the concept. She now continues the aforementioned romance and produces and hosts the music show where she combines the two things she's most passionate about, radio and independent indian music, dedicated to making the 'underground' voices heard.

Santosh Sirur, Host of Sound of Money

Santosh has been involved in media for over 15 years.  Most of this experience has been in live radio with All India Radio, where he has RJ’d, covered business and headline news, and co-anchored GoodMorning Bharat, a live current affairs breakfast show.  Santosh’s alter ego is in business.  Since getting his Masters Degree in Marketing Management from Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies he has worked at ICICI Bank, Societe Generale, and Barclay’s Wealth.  Santosh brings his vast experience in business and his passion for radio to the production of Sound of Money.

Sidharth Bhatia, Consulting Editor and Co-host of East Meets West

You could say that Sidharth is a connoisseur of media.  He has been involved in journalism for most of his life, from print to television.  His most recent exploits include founding a French language newspaper in Mauritius, serving as editor for DNA’s edit page, and editing the online content for Gateway House, India’s first independent foreign policy think-tank.  He has recently finished a book and plans to take time to pursue his passions in media, such as online journalism, photography, and Dabba Radio.

Ravi ‘Shekar’ Chandrashekar, Co-host of Slum Radio

20-year-old Shekar grew up in the Dhorwada area of Dharavi, where he has always lived in the same two rooms along with his mother, father and older sister.  Shekar attended an English-medium convent school, where his adventurous spirit landed him a seemingly permanent place in the principal’s office.  Shekar has been able to witness the significant changes that have occurred in Dharavi over the years, especially the introduction of television into slum households.  He observed that through watching TV “people see the Western and rich lifestyles and then start to want consumer goods like mobiles and cameras, so the mindset of Dharavi residents has changed a lot during my lifetime”. 

Muthu Perumal, Co-host of Slum Radio

Muthu grew up on the outside edge of Dharavi in a suburb called Sion.  After graduating with a degree in commerce from Mumbai University, Muthu went on to work as a relationship manager at ICICI Bank, followed by his role as a television and film producer for Maximum Entertainment.  He speaks six languages: English, Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam.  Muthu first came to know the intricacies of Dharavi when he “just walked over the bridge” between Sion and Dharavi to visit friends who live in the slum.  After the first crossing of the bridge, Muthu became a regular fixture in Dharavi as his fascination with the slum grew and he was increasingly touched by the plights of people living there.

Rita Sosa, News Editor and Host

Rita has years of experience in radio broadcasting where she previously co-anchored GoodMorning Bharat, a live current affairs breakfast show, with Santosh Sirur.  She will serve on our editorial board as well as host and develop our daily morning news show.  Much of her work will focus on creating feature stories for broadcast on the morning show.

Anand Mahindra, Managing Director of the Mahindra Group

Anand Mahindra heads the Mahindra Group, an Indian conglomerate that had revenues of $12.5 billion in 2010.  Anand graduated from Harvard University as a film major in 1977 and received his MBA from Harvard in 1981.  He consistently ranks high on lists of prominent Indian businessman and visionary leaders including, among many others, the Business Leader of the Year Award in 2009 from the Economic Times.

Anand was an early guest on the show TiffinTalk and has since taken a strong interest in the work of Dabba Radio.  Anand wears many hats on the Dabba Radio Advisory Board.


cast and crew

advisory board

Rishi Jaitly, Program Director for the Knight Foundation in Detroit

Rishi Jaitly is currently the Program Director for the Knight Foundation in Detroit, USA.  The Knight Foundation is one of the largest funders of journalism in the United States.  Rishi formerly headed public policy for Google in South Asia where he interacted with governments on issues relating to an open Internet.  He was responsible for the governments of Pakistan and Bangladesh lifting their bans on YouTube and oversaw a project during the 2009 Indian election to connect voters with critical governance data.

Rishi Jaitly was an early guest on TiffinTalk and has a passion for citizen radio.


Naresh Fernandes, Consulting Editor for TimeOut: India

Naresh Fernandes serves as a consulting editor for TimeOut: India and recently finished a book on the jazz history of Mumbai titled “Taj Mahal Foxtrot: The Story of Bombay’s Jazz Age.”  Naresh also contributes articles on a freelance basis that have appeared in various Indian publications and The New Yorker.

Naresh hosts a section of our music show, called The Underground Vault, and will also consult as an editor for Dabba Radio’s content.


Christopher Lydon, Host of Radio Open Source

Chris Lydon has decades of experience in journalism and public radio.  After writing for the New York Times, Chris moved to Boston and hosted The Connection at WBUR for NPR.  He is currently at Brown University and hosts Radio Open Source as a fellow at the Watson Institute for International Studies.

Chris has had a lifelong fascination with India and has been focusing the efforts of Radio Open Source on a series on India and, more recently, Pakistan.


Parmesh Shahani, Director of Culture Labs

Parmesh Shahani founded Fresh Lime Soda, India’s first youth website, and worked on business development for Sony’s Indian TV channel.   Parmesh has also worked as an editor for Verve and Elle magazines.  Currently he is heading a project called Culture Labs as a part of the Godrej Group.  Parmesh is also a TED Fellow.

Parmesh will serve as a resource for content and strategic direction for Dabba Radio.


Rajesh Tahil, Founder and Director of Hill Road Media

Rajesh Tahil headed Radio Mid Day and then was CEO of Radio One, a joint Mid Day and BBC Worldwide FM venture, before leaving in 2007. He currently oversees Hill Road Media, a content production company that works on radio, print, web and mobile platforms.  He is currently managing a UNICEF radio project in Uttar Pradesh.

Rajesh will provide content and radio medium direction to Dabba Radio.