About Us

BC-IBN is a non-profit and non-partisan organization dedicated to building and maintaining economic, social and cultural ties between British Columbia and India through trade.

Board Members

Vivek A. Savkur

FOUNDER & PRESIDENT EMERITUS

Vivek Savkur is the Managing Director of Anand Commercial Services Pvt Ltd. Mumbai and Owner of Savkur International Agencies in Vancouver.He has been actively connected with Indo-Canadian Bilateral Trade since the last 30 years. Before immigrating to Canada form Mumbai, India he held several positions in the Indo-Canadian Business Chamber (ICBC), Mumbai and was on it’s National Board for several years and it’s National President for three consecutive years. He is well connected in India and in BC and is conversant with all sectors of trade in the BC-India Business Corridor.

Sasha Ramnarine

Vice President

Sasha Ramnarine is a Business Lawyer with Remedios and Company helping local and international entrepreneurs and small businesses establish successful businesses in British Columbia and Canada. His areas of practice include, Business Law, Real Estate Law, and Estate Planning. Sasha has worked since the age of nine and managed his family’s Trinidadian restaurant for a number of years in Kitsilano. A tireless lawyer and entrepreneur, Sasha is dedicated to providing his clients with high value and creative legal solutions for their business and personal life. Sasha has taught Business and Employment law courses at Simon Fraser University and Kwantlen Polytechnic University.

Dawood Shakir

Director

Dawood has more than a decade long experience in the field of Business Administration, International Marketing in Education and Entrepreneurship. Along with this, he dons proud badges of many success stories of setting trade operations between the United Kingdom, Canada, and India. He has gained an impeccable track record from working for the Ministry of International Trade, BC government and in UK Trade & Investment at the British Deputy High Commission in India. This has fueled his passion of continuing this journey in helping businesses and entrepreneurs to successfully set up their operations and immigrate to Canada.

Sorabh Kapoor

Director

Sorabh is an innovative and self-motivated finance professional with over 20 years of experience in financial and business leadership and strategic consultation. Currently, as Financial Controller at Natu’oil Services Inc. he oversees the accounting functions of the multimillion-dollar organization. Sorabh served as CFO (2Wh-Div.) for OMAX Autos Ltd, India where he was instrumental in bringing about huge savings in operational cost. With MSSL, Mexico working as CFO he was instrumental in turning around the loss-making unit. He also worked for six years with Khanna Paper Mills Ltd. where he grew from the ranks of an Accountant to Departmental head in 4 years. Sorabh is an ardent sports enthusiast and a cricket player. He is an Indian Chartered Accountant and has a Bachelor’s in Commerce.

George Matthew

Director

George has over ten years of experience in providing clients with total business solutions working closely with a broad array of disciplines such as franchise marketing, social media, government relations, digital AI technology, and App developments. George is an entrepreneur, who was in restaurant businesses promoting paleo and ketogenic concepts. He caters to niche clients in the luxury segment, catering and yacht chartering. He is a partner for Viva Grills, which has international pattern rights for its unique technology in commercial kitchens. George is Director for VIGE Trading, a business house for commodities and petrochemicals, and Founder Director for Cornerstone Concrete Services Inc. which provides Architectural and Structural Concrete services in the construction industry.

Tarun Khullar

Director

Tarun’s professional background is predominantly in international student education, which is apt since he came to Canada as an international student to complete degree studies in IT and Business Administration. His real innovations were realized once he assumed the office of CEO at Pacific Link College. As CEO, he created a global team-based structure that helped recognize PLC as a global brand from Latin America to Africa and Asia. Tarun’s greatest impact on the business community is: Sharing knowledge between education sector with industries for innovation - Mentoring young professional who wish to become entrepreneurs - Reaching out to communities who do not have access to technology or business ideas and helped several communities to access education and technology. Tarun is passionate Traveller, enjoys water sports and adventurous activities such as Skydiving . Tarun strongly believes that world is a small village and family,  where everyone should learn from each other to thrive as a human society.

Sobhana Jaya-Madhavan

President

Sobhana graduated from Calicut University with a Bachelors's degree in Philosophy and from Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) with a Master's degree in Social Work. After a two-year stint in India as head of HR, Sobhana joined Simon Fraser University (SFU) as Associate Vice President, External Relations in 2017. Sobhana is the President of BC-India Business Network (BC-IBN), Chief Impact Officer for HashHackCode (India) and sits on several Advisory Committees and Boards. In 2019, Sobhana was recognized by the global Women Economic Forum (WEF) with a Woman of the Decade award.

Mannu Sandhu

Vice President

Having worked with major brands and publications within North America and all over India, Mannu Sandhu is an accomplished Canadian Model and Actress who’s made her mark in the Entertainment Industry. Experienced in Modelling, Acting, and Production, she travels between Canada and India working on various projects throughout the year. She spear heads the Vancouver International South Asian Film Festival every year and has been running it successfully for the past 6 years. Now successfully running a real estate firm in Greater Vancouver and Fraser Valley.

Narges Nirumvala

Director

Narges Nirumvala is the Founder and CEO of ExecutiveSpeak Coaching International, an official TEDx speaker coach, award winning serial entrepreneur, motivational speaker and author of the bestselling book “Capture the Spotlight”. She has appeared on CityTV, Breakfast Television, OMNI Television, SUCCESS magazine, the Province, News1130 Radio, the National Post, Business In Vancouver, Mashable, Ottawa Citizen, The Globe and Mail and many others. Her writing on the subject has been published in 106 countries worldwide. Narges is also a humanitarian, mentor, volunteer and community leader. She is a passionate champion for women’s rights and the economic empowerment of women and girls.

Kathy McGarrigle

Director

Kathy is a seasoned financial executive and former chief operating officer of Coast Capital Savings, Canada’s largest Credit Union by membership. She was a key member of the executive team that led its transformation to one of the strongest performing Canadian credit unions. She was recently appointed to the ICICI Bank Canada board of directors, and has served on several corporate and community boards. Kathy has extensive experience managing large, complex businesses in Canada and internationally. Before joining Coast Capital, she was senior vice-president Premier Banking for HSBC where she led its global strategy and positioned Canada as one of its top global regions. Kathy has a passion for volunteering and advocating for groups related to diversity, poverty, women, children, and seniors. Kathy has been recognized for her leadership and community service. She was named one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women in both 2016 and 2017. Kathy is a graduate of the Queen’s University Executive Program and Institute of Corporate Directors, and a Fellow of the Institute of Canadian Bankers.

Neha Shivhare

Director

Neha is an experienced academician with over 15 years of international work experience gained at the university level in different academic and leadership roles. She has been a Professor of education. Has conducted research and taught courses on Leadership, Ethics, Diversity, Educational Entrepreneurship to business students and school teachers. Presently, she leads UBC’s Indigenous Health and Leadership, and Mid-Career Learning Technology Programs. She is also engaged in teaching a course for Executive Leadership Program at SFU. Committed to community wellbeing and connectedness, she also volunteers for non-profit organizations to   support food security, educational and entrepreneurial upliftment, and non-religious non-denominational spirituality. In her downtime, Neha loves spending time with family and friends, creating short movies on the life experiences of older adults, nurturing plants, and experimenting with recipes.

Advisors

Consul General Manish

Acting High Commissioner

Mr. Manish is a career diplomat. He joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1997. In his over twenty two years of diplomatic career so far he has served in Indian Missions in Moscow, Tashkent, Prague, Colombo and Jakarta. In between his overseas assignments, he served in New Delhi at the Ministry of External Affairs first as Under Secretary in the US & Canada Division and Foreign Service Institute; and then as Deputy Secretary in the United Nations Political Division from August 2004 to July 2007. Prior to being appointed as India's Consul General in Vancouver, he served as Joint Secretary in the Sushma Swaraj Institute of Foreign Service from November 2017 to April 2018 and then as Joint Secretary managing India’s bilateral relations with ASEAN countries, Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Island Countries from April 2018 to November 2019. As Joint Secretary (Overseas Indian Affairs) from November 2019 to August 2020, he implemented policies for engagement with Indian diaspora.

Rupa Naik

Advisor

Rupa Naik has vast experience in the field of International trade and research.  She has worked with a large number of overseas and Indian Trade Promotion Organisations spanning a career of over three decades.  As an Executive Director of World Trade Center Mumbai, Rupa Naik has been actively promoting India’s International trade investments and business development.  She is primarily responsible for the establishment of the World Trade Centers in Bhubaneswar, Goa and Jaipur with a view to promote international trade of these regions.  She is responsible for the trade infrastructure and trade facilities of the World Trade Center Mumbai. She also takes keen interest in programmes to promote women empowerment, agriculture, wellness and other topical issues. Rupa Naik works closely with key Government officials and international multilateral agencies to promote India’s bilateral trade.

Kashmira Mewawala

Advisor

Kashmira Mewawala is the Head Business Development and Chief Ethics Counsellor, at TATA CAPITAL and has rich experience of 37 years in the Financial Services industry, as a part of the Tata Group. Kashmira commenced her career in 1985 at Tata Share Registry Limited and was involved with many pathbreaking changes in the financial securities market. Kashmira holds/held many roles with Confederation of Indian Industry including: Chairman CII Maharashtra State Council; Chairman CII Committee on International Trade and Investment; Chairperson CII Indian Women Network and Maharashtra. Kashmira was awarded the “Mumbai’s Woman Leader” title in 2022 by the World Women Leadership Congress.

Jamshed Mistry

Advisor

Experienced Counsel with a demonstrated history of working in the law practice industry. Skilled in various type of Litigation, International Law, Media and Entertainment law, Medico Legal, Social and Public Interest causes, Service laws etc. Has qualified from the University of Mumbai - Bachelor of commerce (H. R. College of Commerce & Economics); Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) (Government Law College) & P.G. Diploma in Labour Laws and Labour Welfare (Dr. Ambedkar College of Law). Founder of the internationallegalalliance.com (virtual global network of lawyers). Member of the Bombay Bar Association, the Intellectual Property Rights Practitioners Association, Maximum Lawyer group and Associate member of the Canadian Bar Association (British Columbia branch). Advisory Board member of the South Asian Fashion Week (Vancouver); Vancouver International South Asian Film Festival. Life member of the following institutions – World Zoroastrian Chamber Commence, International Centre Goa, the Ripon Club, St. Mary’s (ISC) High School Alumni Association. Member of the Indo Canadian Business Chamber, and the Lions Club of Byculla. District Chairman – Legal Issues – Lions Club International District. 3231A1 (2021-22). Hon. Board member – Asian Chamber Of Hospitality Industry; United Forum for Legal Studies. Advisory Board member of ADAPT (Formerly Spastics Society of India). Member of College Development Committee of Pravin Gandhi Law College, Mumbai. Melvin Jones Fellow – Lions Club International and Paul Harris Fellow – Rotary International. Hon. Managing Committee member – Bombay Parsee Association. Hon. Legal Advisor – OCA Foundation.

Raghwa Gopal

Advisor

A serial entrepreneur, Gopal joined Innovate BC from Accelerate Okanagan (AO), where he was Chief Executive Officer. Gopal has been a driving force in the development of the Okanagan’s tech sector into a $2 billion economic contributor. Gopal has also lectured in the Faculty of Management (Business) at UBC Okanagan and the School of Arts and Sciences (Computer Science); has been an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Okanagan College School of Business; and serves on the boards of multiple organizations including the University of British Columbia, India Canada Innovation Council, Women’s Enterprise Centre, Central Okanagan Economic Development, and B.C.’s Emerging Economy Task Force and Food Security Task Force.