x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Squeued

This event occurred on
January 19, 2020
Pilani, Rajasthan

There are always some people who believe that the world could be a better place than what we live in and these are the people who irrespective of the societal constraints and bureaucratic structures, that hinder creativity, find out a way and execute ideas that are out of the ordinary.

We at TEDxBITSPilani call these people 'squeued'. Squeued is a wordplay on 'Skewed' which means to suddenly change direction. The idea of TEDx is to present talks from people whose ideas stand apart from that of the ordinary. Squeued stands for people who instead of following the 'queue' have a different outlook towards the world.

Creativity & innovation is to events, what the heart & soul is to the living. These squeued little ideas allow other people to explore beyond the linear course of thoughts and give them a multi-dimensional perspective towards life. We hope that we at TEDxBITSPilani are able to make the world aware of a tiny fraction of millions of these squeued ideas present in the world.

BITS Pilani
Vidyavihar Campus
Pilani, Rajasthan, 333031
Event type:
University (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Amla Ruia

Social Activist
Amla Ruia is an Indian social activist known for her work in water harvesting. She founded the Aakar Charitable Trust, which has transformed 400 villages across Rajasthan, helping them achieve water security. Her work has been covered by the BBC, presenting her with the title 'Water Mother of India'. She has won several awards and has also been nominated for the 'Women of Worth Award'. Her work has impacted the livelihood of more than 2 lakh villagers, helping them generate Rs. 300 crore per annum.

Avinash Sontakke

Undergrad student, Physics Enthusiast
Avinash Sontakke, a Physics major at BITS Pilani, is a budding scientist who is looking to answer the biggest questions in Physics with the smallest answers possible. Having worked on projects that involved stimulating satellite trajectories in the gravitational potential of the Earth and development of a walking pattern as a biometric identity, he has tried to adapt his interest in programming to Physics-based applications. He plans to put his experience to use in the domains of Optical and Quantum Computing.

Dar Gai

Director, Screenwriter and Producer
Dar Gai is a Ukrainian born director, screenwriter, and producer. From the age of ten, she was a part of the known Ukrainian theater group "Incunabula." Along with acting and directing numerous theater plays and street performances she pursued her Bachelor's and Master's in Philosophy consequently her work reflected her understanding of Western culture and post that she set out to conquer the east. What followed led to a whirlwind of 12 awards and nominations in over 35 international film festivals for her very first directorial debut film "Three and a half" which she also produced alongside Indian auteur Anurag Kashyap. With stories that capture the essence of everyday life and direction that manages to add an element of fantasy, her surreal realism laden movie Three and a Half is now on Netflix and is truly a work of art.

Dr Rajagopal M. R.

Palliative Care Physician
Dr M.R. Rajagopal, aptly called by The New York Times as ‘the father of palliative healthcare in India’, is a Nobel Peace Prize nominee and a Padma Shree awardee. Palliative healthcare can be best defined as the act of caring for critically ill patients or caring for patients with complex diseases. Dr. Rajagopal is the director of the WHO Collaborating Center for Policy and Training on access to pain relief and also the founder of Pallium India, an organization that advocates death with dignity as the right of patients. He has also been featured in the 2017, Australian-made documentary 'Hippocratic' telling his remarkable life story. His advocacy has sparked a debate, especially on the front of giving universal access to morphine- a heavily restricted, narcotic pain medicine which has the power to revolutionize palliative medicine

Francois Castellino

Voice Over Artist
Rated as one of the best voice over artists in the country with nearly 30 years of experience, National Award Winner Francois Castellino has lent his voice to some of the most popular global brands, including Harley Davidson, Volkswagen, Adidas, Emirates, Wimbledon, American Tourister, Lenovo, and Taco Bell, among others. Beginning his career in the early nineties, singer and thespian Francois Castellino has now become an integral part of the advertising, voiceover and theatre community in India. In 2017, Castellino won the National Award for Best Non-Feature Film Narration for the documentary, The Lion of Ladakh. With a strong passion for acting and theatre, Francois has also mentored several upcoming voice-over artists and industry professionals alike, as a voice coach.

Gunjan Ahlawat

Graphic Designer
A graphic designer, image-maker, and largely self-taught painter, Ahlawat Gunjan is the head of the Design Department at Penguin Random House, India. He has worked closely with major publishing houses like Faber and Faber, Quercus, Knopf US, and Lars Müller, among others. Gunjan has been the genius behind the cover art of several books, authored by persons along the likes of Ruskin Bond, Anuradha Roy, Anjum Hasan, and Amitav Ghosh. His most acclaimed works include his covers for Amitv Ghosh’s latest ‘Gun Island’.

Latika Nath

Wildlife Conservationist
Dr. Latika Nath, bestowed with the title 'The Tiger Princess' by National Geographic, is the first woman and Indian to have a doctorate on Tigers from The University of Oxford. She has spent over 25 years of her life, working at the grassroots level for tiger conservation to working with the tribal communities in the buffer zone of Kanha Tiger Reserve. Her work has been featured on National Geographic in a documentary called ‘The Tiger Princess' and on the Discovery Channel on the program ‘Wild Things’. She has also contributed to films on the BBC, as well as the cover story on tigers for the "Year of the Tiger" by National Geographic Magazine. She has spent the past few years of her life photographing the cat species and exploring the myriad wilderness.

Pablo Naranjo Agular

Pablo Naranjo Agular is an amazing chef, who pursued his culinary school at Le Cordon Bleu, Paris and went on to work at several Michelin Starred Restaurants, known to be sanctums of culinary legends like Guy Savoy (who has previously mentored Gordon Ramsey) and Alain Senderensi. The Colombian chef created quite a stir in the culinary scene in India, ever since he moved to Mumbai from Paris. His cafés represent his love for blending different cultures and reflect his passion for food. He and his work have been featured on Fox Traveller, Vogue, and Condé Nast Traveller. He is also an avid traveler and it is his drive for learning about new cultures and their food that make him one of the most popular names in the Indian culinary scene.

Sanjay Prakash

Sustainable Architecture Designer
Sanjay Prakash is a pioneer in the field of eco-architecture with a commitment to energy-conscious architecture, eco-friendly design, music, and production design. The principal consultant at the firm SHiFt: Studio for Habitat Futures, he works with his team on passive and low energy architecture, autonomous energy and water systems and community-based design of common property. He is also the co-founder of Future Institute, a non profit, multi-disciplinary applied-research platform seeking to inform how India shapes it's Urban future.

Organizing team




  • Pratulya Shah
  • Rohit Jain
  • soham banerjee
  • Supriya Gharpure