The First BK Roy Annual Oration by Lord Meghnad Desai

The First BK Roy Annual Oration by Lord Meghnad Desai

The First BK Roy Annual Oration was held on 12 April 2013 at the Oberoi Grand in Kolkata. A Peerless initiative, announced on the Group’s 80th anniversary, the annual lecture series is sponsored as a tribute to the Group’s former Managing Director, mentor and exemplar, BK Roy.

It will be a forum for dialogue, debate and discussion with some of the world’s top thinkers and opinion leaders, where national and international icons will take stage to inspire the need for change.


In its launch year, the BK Roy Annual Oration had Padma Bhushan recipient, the distinguished economist and political thinker Lord Meghnad Desai speak on Economics, Politics, Popular Culture: Emergence of a New India. This oration was followed by a live audience interaction with the invitees.

Speaking about the BK Annual Oration, Lord Meghnad Desai says, “It was a great experience addressing the Calcutta audience and talking about the new India that is emerging through its politics, economics, media and movies.”

Sunil Kanti Roy, Managing Director of Peerless says, “We intend to make the BK Roy Annual Oration a special and important event on the Kolkata calendar every year and we will invite the finest thinkers and intellectuals to share their ideas with us.”


Former Editor of Mid Day and DNA and noted cricket commentator, Ayaz Memon introduced the evening and moderated the Q&A session with a live audience while famous painter Sanjay Bhattacharya performed a live painting on stage. Former Unilever India Chairman SM Datta, Director on the Board of Peerless, spoke about the BK Roy Oration and introduced Lord Meghnad Desai.

The event is conceptualized and organized by Pritish Nandy Communications in association with the National Media Foundation.

About The Peerless Group

Incorporated in 1932 as The Peerless Insurance Co Ltd, the company is now known as The Peerless General Finance & Investment Co Ltd. The 80 year old Kolkata based Group is one of eastern India’s most trusted business houses and has interests in healthcare, hospitality, mutual funds, real estate, and financial products. The Board of Directors of PGFI is led by former Chairman of State Bank of India, Dipankar Basu. SK Roy is the Managing Director. Other well known figures on the Board include former Unilever India Chairman SM Dutta, former Managing Partner of Ernst & Young AC Chakraborrti and Chairman of ICRA Limited & Chief Executive Officer of the Group ICRA, PK Choudhury.