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#OxfamINDIA: NISHA AGRAWAL – Fighting the Good Fight on Multiple Fronts

Nisha Agrawal has arguably the most thankless job in the charity business.

As CEO of Oxfam India, the career campaigner oversees a mammoth array of projects dealing with everything from disaster relief and humanitarian aid to gender equality and sanitation.

When she’s not fighting to overcome the crippling bureaucracy and rampant corruption that swirls around her work in the sub-continent like that thick smog that often envelopes New Delhi, Agrawal is travelling the length and breadth of India appealing for more help or, worst still, defending her organization’s work.

That problem becomes particularly acute when she travels to Britain where Daily Mail-reading Middle England tends to be skeptical about sending money to a country whose government spends public money buying Italian helicopters for “Very Very Important People” or sending spacecraft to Mars whilst a majority of its population subsists on a daily pittance.

Oxfam India is a fully independent entity one of 17 such organizations that fall under the Oxfam umbrella.

The charity, which is staffed by Indian nationals who also sit on its board, works in partnership with a staggering 180 different NGO’s across seven Indian states.

Its work is divided into four distinct segments: Economic Justice – improving the lives of marginalized communities; Essential Services, which focuses on education and health care; Gender Justice and Disaster Relief.

During a flying visit to London, the UKAsian’s editor Viji Alles caught up with Ms Agrawal to talk about accountability, poverty alleviation and the Anand Milk Union Limited or “AMUL”.

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