Ms. Teesta Setalvad born on February 9, 1962, Educated at Elphinstone College, Higher Secondary Certificate Elphinstone College, Indian School Certificate Maneekji Cooper School, Mumbai. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree since 1983. On March 23, 2007 She was awarded India's second highest civilian award the "PADMASRI" by the President of India, Shri APJ Abdul Kalam for Social Journalism and Social Justice.. She is the Researcher and Author of several books. She directs, Scrip-writes, Co-produces documentary films especially related to human abuse and human rights violations. Her 10-minute documentary film for ARDE (German TV) on human rights violations. Deals with illegal detention and torture of hundreds of innocent Muslims following the bomb blasts in Bombay. She has won tens of awards both national and international level.
Teesta Setalvad is a Mumbai-based journalist and human rights' activist who has had to function under threat and intimidation especially since her fearless intervention during and after the Gujarat genocide in 2002, through her efforts, some of the victims of the genocidal crimes in Gujarat 2001 may actually receive justice in the near future. Some already have. The strong voice that Setalvad represents have led victims of both the Muslim minority and the Hindu Majority who lost loved ones in the mass arson in coach S-6 of the Sabarmati Express to approach her for succor and justice. The historic judgment delivered by the Indian Supreme Court on April 12, 2004, when the historic BEST bakery re-trial was shifted to a venue outside the state of Gujarat was vindication of her consistent two year old stand.
In recognition of exceptional initiatives in the field of journalism, development and to Combat Communalism, Teesta won many National awards such as: State Minorities Commission Award, Mother Teresa Memorial National Award for Social Justice, Nani Palkhivala Civil Liberties Award, Mahatma Gandhi Peace Awards, The Human Rights Award by the Dalit Liberation Education Trust, Chennai, and Rajiv Gandhi Sadbhavna Award, (awarded jointly to Teesta Setalvad and Harsh Mander). Some of the International Award includes "Defender of Democracy Award 2004," by Parliamentarians for Global Action, New York, Numbering International Human Rights Award 2003 and The Prince Claus Award 2000 (Netherlands).