Deep Joshi: An activist dedicated to a cause

 Joshi, who has over 30 years of experience in the field of rural development and livelihood promotion, says the award was not for an individual, but for “an idea” — the vision of giving a better life to the rural people of India.

Born in a remote village of Pithoragarh district in Uttranchal in 1947, Joshi did Masters in engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and in Management from the Sloan School, MIT, before working with the Systems Research Institute and the Ford Foundation.

Joshi always felt the need to give something back to the society. He co-founded the NGO ‘Pradan’ which worked for promoting locally suitable economic activities and improving the livelihoods of rural people in several Indian states.

“We need educated people to go to rural areas and work. We need caring people there who will seek to bring change,” says Joshi, who has now retired from Pradan and works as a consultant to the organisation.

The 62-year-old has been recognised for “his vision and leadership in bringing professionalism to the NGO movement in India, by effectively combining ‘head’ and ‘heart’ in the transformative development of rural communities,” the Board of Trustees of the Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation said.

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