What we do
After the “avoidable” Carlton Towers fire tragedy that took place in Bangalore city on the 23rd of February 2010, grieving relatives and survivors of this horrible tragedy came together to form a movement, one which would initiate awareness, spread a message across the country and ensure that one would never have to see a day such as this again.
From only survivors and people who had lost their loved ones, Beyond Carlton has now grown to become a movement of fire safety concerned citizens who are aiming to change the way India looks at fire safety and enables her citizens with fire-safety awareness. As responsible citizens, it is our duty to take it upon ourselves to do our bit and avoid a fire damage and death due to ignorance.
Beyond Carlton aims to make India 100% fire safe.
Board Of Trustees
Beyond Carlton is a registered charitable trust that has trustees who are family members of those who lost their lives in the Carlton Towers tragedy or were injured on 23rd Feb 2010. Also as trustees, it includes citizens who want to make a difference to fire safety in India.
Uday Vijayan-Managing Trustee & President
Uday Vijayan is the Managing Trustee and President of ‘Beyond Carlton’. After the loss of his young son in the Carlton Towers fire tragedy on 23 Feb 2010, Uday felt the need to reach out to other families who had similarly lost a loved one in the fire. The idea for doing so was to not just share their grief but also work on getting accountability for the accident. In addition, Uday along with the others wanted to spread awareness towards fire safety. Uday is a senior marketing and brand development professional providing advisory support from large to start-up companies. He has, over his career spanning 30 years, worked with large global advertising and communication agencies and also headed the marketing function of large organisations. He has helped provide direction for global communication agencies to enter the Indian market. Uday did his education from Hyderabad Public School and his graduation from Delhi University. He also has a PGDM in Marketing. In recognition of his work at Beyond Carlton, Uday was awarded the “Namma Bengaluru Award for citizen of the year" in 2011. In addition, Underwriters Labs (UL) has recognized his effort at Beyond Carlton, and designated him as “Safety Ambassador”. Uday has since also been on the jury of the Namma Bengaluru Awards Committee to select outstanding individuals and entities in Bangalore. Uday frequently speaks on issues to do with fire safety at various forums.
Gopal Devanahalli is currently the Chief Operating Officer of Manipal Health Enterprises (Manipal), Gopal’s responsibilities include operating the various hospital units while also incubating new growth engines which include Technology based Healthcare Delivery, Home Care, and Public-Private Partnership based businesses. Gopal has over 22 years of professional services experience, and has been with Manipal for over 18 months now. Prior to that, he was associated with companies like Infosys and Kotak. During his 15+ years at Infosys, Gopal's responsibilities included managing a business, developing corporate strategy, and business development. His designation at the time of separation was Vice President, Products & Platforms. Gopal has an Engineering Degree in Computer Science, from BITS, Pilani, and a PGDM from IIM, Calcutta. In addition, he has done a Public Policy Course at The Takshashila Institution.
Nitin Dubey is one of the founding trustees of Beyond Carlton and a survivor of the Carlton Towers fire. He used to work on the top floor of the building and sustained severe smoke inhalation injuries in the fire accident. After recovering, Nitin was one of the people that Uday Vijayan, the Managing Trustee and President of Beyond Carlton, reached out to.
Together with other survivors, family members who lost a loved one that day, fire safety professionals and other citizens who wanted to contribute to the goal of fire safety, Nitin helped strategise and execute the various initiatives undertaken by Beyond Carlton, like establishing accountability for the accident and pushing for more stringent fire safety laws. An architecture graduate from RV College of Engineering, Bangalore, Nitin has a post graduate degree in real estate development and strategic consulting from University of Technology Sydney (UTS), Australia.
However, his childhood ambition of establishing a career in music led him to also study music and audio production at The University of Sydney, and the life-changing experience of the Carlton Towers fire firmed up his decision to pursue his passion. Nitin has since relocated to Mumbai, where he is now a successful music composer for advertising and feature films, having worked with some of India's top advertising agencies and production houses on campaigns for brands like Cadbury, Honda, Colgate, Samsung, Airtel, Vodafone, Hyundai and Maruti Suzuki. He continues to be dedicated to the cause of fire safety and is a strong proponent of fire safety cognizance and preparedness in the local community.
Vasanthi is a communications coach, media strategist and an independent anchor. She is also the founder of Pickle Jar, a community platform that aspires to curate programs of social relevance. In the past decade, Vasanthi has reported news as a special correspondent for NDTV 24x7; anchored documentaries for BBC World News from Nepal & Vietnam and has been the award-winning show host of a high-energy primetime breakfast show titled Good Morning Bangalore on Radio City 91.1 FM. Vasanthi was also involved in a US Consulate program to mentor adolescents to realise their dreams. Presently, she lends her strength and support to Gaon Connection, India’s biggest independent rural newspaper and is among the advisors to Bultu Radio in Chhattisgarh, that aims to link unconnected parts of tribal India. She has coached many corporates and other organisations and their heads on media management and PR skills. To name a few -- TVS, Philips India and Indian Oil Tanking, besides holding media sessions at the Indian Air Force base at Begumpet and Yelahanka, Bangalore. Among the awards won is the India Radio Excellence Award in 2007 for ‘Best English RJ of the Year’ following which Vasanthi was sent to London by her radio station to study the best practices of UK’s radio space. The same year, she was nominated by India’s noted technocrat Mr Narayana Murthy of Infosys to represent India as Global Young Leader at Salzburg, Austria. She has also won the Rotary Bangalore Award for being ‘Change Agent Par Excellence’ and the Dazzling Daughter Award from the Public Relations Council of India. She also has been on the jury of the Namma Bengaluru Awards, one of Bengaluru’s foremost and respected awards that identifies unknown citizens who are quietly making a change to the city and its problems.
R. A. Venkitachalam
R.A.Venkitachalam (Venki) is currently the Vice President - Public Safety Mission at Underwriters Laboratories Inc. (UL), Venki is responsible for advancing the cause of Public Safety, and UL's mission across the developing world. The establishment of Safety Councils in India as a platform, the first one for UL outside of North America, was spearheaded by Venki with the intention of facilitating constructive dialogues between multiple stake holders involved in tackling Public Safety challenges. In his earlier role as the Managing Director for UL's Emerging Markets, and for a period of over 10 years, Venki led the growth of UL in South East Asia, India, Middle East and Africa. During this period, the development of the ‘In India For India Strategy’, leveraging the ‘Public Safety Mission’ to build local relevance, has been one of his many contributions. He also led UL in making significant investments in the region, expanding UL’s geographic footprint as well as its technical, laboratory, and service range and capabilities. Prior to working with UL, Venki held various senior positions (including at the CEO level) with leading MNC / Indian companies covering Consumer, Capital Goods, and Telecom sectors. Venki has a Bachelor of Technology degree in Chemical Engineering, and a Masters in Industrial Management from IIT Chennai. He has, in addition, been part of the Executive Leadership program of School of Management, Yale University. Venki has been a speaker at several forums in India and overseas on issues pertaining to Public Safety, and General Management.
The Executive Council consists of citizen members who take an active part in driving the Beyond Carlton Mission and implementing its programs.
Cheryl Rebello - Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
Cheryl Rebello is a social entrepreneur and businesswoman.
She has played a core role in the institution building work of organisations devoted to social purpose. At Janaagraha, Civil Defence, Meta-Culture, and CherYsh, she contributed to the mission and vision. - of urban governance, citizen safety, conflict resolution, and rural development. This included, program development, multi-stakeholder engagement, advocacy and youth leadership.
She has spent five years in urban governance, ten years in Civil Defence engagement, and six years as founding member and CEO of CherYsh an NGO devoted to rural development.
Currently Cheryl is Principal Associate in the business of imported furniture.
She continues her active contribution to social change.
Cheryl is Trustee with the South Asian Symphony Foundation, Bangalore. The Trust is dedicated to peacebuilding in the South Asian region using the medium of music.
Amitha Singh is a digital marketing leader and entrepreneur with 27+ years of experience across various industries. As a Senior Director - Marketing, Amitha currently leads marketing for APAC, Middle East and Africa geographies for Anthology, a leading higher education product and solutions company. While taking a break from corporate roles before her current role at Anthology, Amitha set up Ideas *R Us, a Think Tank – the only company from India to participate as a game author in 35 years, at the mecca of board games, Spiel at Essen, Germany in 2018; Successfully crowd-funded a board game from India in 2017; Successfully launched an MSME that manufactures breads and other bakery products under the brand name Nido Breads in 2019. This business employs more than 80% women and provides them a chance at a life of respect and economic empowerment. During this period, Amitha was also part of the core team at Oracle India to set up the first Oracle Startup Accelerator program in Bangalore in 2016, which went on to scale to 21 cities across multiple countries in a year. She also spends time as a visiting faculty in Digital Marketing for Post Graduate students, a mentor for women entrepreneurs with the Cherie Blair Foundation, a mentor for startups with the Wadhwani Foundation, a founding team member of CII’s Young Indians, and is currently a member of the BMW Foundation’s World Responsible Leader’s Forum since 2008. With an incessant curiosity to explore she looks for solutions in a constantly changing and dynamic environment. While digital has become second nature to her, she enjoys mentoring and contributing towards people’s growth. Amitha’s interests include creative writing (she is a published poet with her debut book in 2017 “A Simple World, A Simple Rule: And Other Poems”), sports, travel, food and reading.
Anup has over 17 years of work experience in disaster risk management, infrastructure resilience, early warning, emergency management and has contributed to several national and regional disaster risk management programmes/projects in countries including India, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Philippines,Vietnam and Iran.
He has undertaken damage assessment studies as part of the Joint Assessment Missions and Post Disaster Reconnaissance Missions in India and Bhutan. Anup also served as a member of the Technical Advisory Group set by the National Disaster Management Division - UNDP and G-6 Disaster Management Committee of Indian Road Congress. He is also a visiting faculty to national / state level training institutions and academic institutions in India. Anup earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Construction Technology and completed Master’s Degree in Environment Planning at Centre for Environmental Planning and Technology (CEPT) University, Ahmedabad.
He has strong interests in building sciences, risk assessment, seismic risk management, school safety, code implementation & regulatory aspects, urban climate change resilience and public safety.
Sumit works with FM Global’s India office where he is responsible for overseeing the company’s efforts to support building code, standards writing, and supporting clients in loss prevention at their facilities. Sumit has over 12 years of experience in the fire protection industry. Prior to joining FM Global, he was associated with Bharat Aluminium Company (BALCO), as Head of Fire Service, and Underwriters Laboratories (UL India Pvt Ltd) as Conformity Assessment Engineer & Reviewer. Sumit is a fire protection engineer from the National Fire Service College, Nagpur. Some of the work done by him includes his contributions in National Building Code, part 4 (fire & life safety) committee work; National level fire protection standards committee work; National codes of practice for fire safety in various occupancies, nationalising the Fire Incident database in India. Sumit is a firm believer in the need for Fire Safety. He devotes a fair amount of his time to Beyond Carlton in this regard. In fact, he was one of the people who inspected the Carlton Tower along with fire department of Karnataka after the Carlton fire. He was also involved in preparation of the report meant to escalate the issues of poor maintenance of fire safety systems in buildings. In fact, fire laws were amended in Karnataka based on inputs from this report among others. Sumit has made presentations on Fire Safety at various national and international seminars and conferences across India, and in Singapore, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Malaysia.
Apabharana is an Associate Partner at Factum Law, Bengaluru. As an Advocate, she represents her clients including multinational companies, individuals and start-ups in various courts of law, tribunals and alternative dispute resolution forums on issues ranging from company law, real estate law and intellectual property rights.
Having enrolled as an Advocate in the year, 2017, Apabharana‘s significant representations include defending a Non-Banking Finance Company and overseeing the implementation of a Scheme of Compromise and Arrangement before High Court of Karnataka involving stakes of Rs. 354 crores and representing 150 homebuyers against a real estate developer company before the Real Estate Regulatory Authority, Bangalore.
Apabharana has also represented children and women survivors of sexual abuse in legal proceedings. She has also contributed to the authorship of Standard Operating Procedures for the Police, Prosecutors and Medical Examiners for handling cases under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012. In addition to conducting training for protection officers, counsellors and voluntary organizations on matters involving women and child rights, she has also conducted sessions for internal complaints committee of government entities, such as ISRO and multinational company on matters involving Sexual Harassment at Workplace.
Vidya has a BE Electronics, VJTI, Bombay Univ and a Masters in Management Studies(MMS), Bombay Univ. She has worked in Mumbai and Bangalore with : Tata Sons Ltd (Mumbai), Satyam Consulting, Indiainfo.com, & Siemens Information Systems Ltd.
Specialities - Business research, feasibility studies, management consulting, quality management systems (ISO, SEI-CMM, P-CMM), Business process improvement & process management.
Since taking a break from full time work, she has been actively engaged in her own Apartment (570 units) Managing committee as election officer, secretary, special projects, legal and various other committee member roles. In the process creating volunteer groups for many causes being Fire safety or enrolments in Electoral roll , Apartment Voting , ward representative teams etc. She has played a very active role in setting up fire safety training and awareness among her apartment residents and got them to participate actively.
She then extended the Apartment Management role by joining BAF( Bangalore Apartments Federation) Governing Council to up the community and citizen engagement on apartment and civic issues since 2017. Her large ongoing role in BAF is in all spheres of apartment issues and policy. As also engaging in various partnerships with NGOs or Corporates to deliver initiatives to members.
Other activities that Vidya is involved with are as Founding member (2019) of Bengaluru Navanirman Party(BNP) and part of ward committee and engagement.
She is a Competitive (global rated) Scrabbler (Also Governing council member for Karnataka State Scrabble Association & Scrabble Association of India during 2017-2020 for promoting scrabble and organizing tournaments). She is also pursuing handmade jewellery as a commercial hobby.
A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of historyM.K. Gandhi
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