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About the Ex-Chairman


DR. SHANTILAL K SOMAIYA, B.SC., LL.B., (D.SC. HONORIS CAUSA) (1927-2010) was Promoter and Director of various companies having business and manufacturing interest in Sugar, Industrial Alcohol, Organic Chemicals, Salt, Printing and Publications, Agriculture, Bulk Drugs, etc.He was also associated with various Educational, Social and Cultural Organisations and has been Member of the Senate of the University of Mumbai, SNDT Women's University and the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore.He had been a member of various Committees constituted by Ministry of HRD including specialised committees of University Grants Commission (UGC).





He was Chairman of Somaiya Group of Industries engaged in the production of sugar, industrial alcohol, heavy organic chemicals, fine chemicals, marine salt, printing and publications.



  • Chairman, Governing Council, K. J. Somaiya Institute of Applied Agricultural Research (KIAAR) primarily engaged in Sugar Cane Research promoted by the Godavari Sugar Mills Ltd.
  • Member, Governing Body, Indian Medical Research Society (IMRS), primarily engaged in research activities in Paediatrics and Neurology.



  • Trustee, K. J. Somaiya Trust and Somaiya Trust which have promoted various Educational, Cultural , Rural and Tribal development institutions.
  • Vice President, Somaiya Vidyavihar (running 34 educational institutions on two Campuses with a strength of 27,000 students and faculty of more than 1,700. The Institutions cover all disciplines for Undergraduates and Postgraduates including Humanities, Arts, Commerce, Science, Engineering, Management Studies, Education, Computer Science and Information Technology).
  • Trustee, K. J. Somaiya Medical Trust (running Medical College and a free Hospital and a Nursing School).
  • Vice Chancellor, Maharashtra Vidyapeeth, Mumbai 
    (an Autonomous University).
  • President, National Association for the Blind, India.                    


Government of India  Apex Bodies :

  • Chairman, Export-Import Advisory Council (Western Region), Govt. of India
  • Member, Central Advisory Council for Industries
  • Member, Advisory Council for Internal Trade
  • Member, All India Council for Technical Education
  • Chairman, Study Group on Agro Industries of the Maharashtra Economic Development Council
  • Member, Pasricha Committee on Sugar Industry
  • Member, Swaminathan Committee for Development of Ethyl
    Alcohol Based Chemical Industries
  • Member, Krishnamurthy Committee on Perspective Plan for Organic Chemicals.


Committee Member In Important Apex Trade Bodies:

  • Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI)
  • Indian National Committee - International Chamber of Commerce
  • Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA)
  • All India Manufacturers' Organisation (AIMO)
  • All India Alcohol- Based Industries Development Association (AABIDA)
  • South India Sugar Mills Association (SISMA)
  • Member of the Grants-in-Aid Committee for Experimental Innovative Programmes for Education constituted by the Ministry of HRD, 
    Govt. of India.


Presidential positions held :

  • All India Organisation Of Employers (AIOE)
  • All India Manufacturers Organisation (AIMO)
  • All India Distillers' Association (AIDA)
  • Indian Merchants’ Chamber (IMC)
  • Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA)
  • Indian Salt Mfrs. Association (ISMA)
  • Sugar Technologists Assn. Of India (STAI)


 Chairman  of various  FICCI sub committees :

  • Agriculture, Rural Development & Social Welfare
  • Ecology & Environment
  • Small Scale Industries
  • Education





  • Represented Indian Employers at “International Labour Organisation” (ILO) as Leader of Indian Delegation/Adviser for three years in succession. (1979-81).
  • Led and participated in several business delegations in different parts of the world over the last two decades.



  • Vice President, Friends of Tribal Society, India, promoting/establishing schools in tribal villages.
  • Trustee, Shree Cutchi Lohana Mahajan, Mumbai
  • Member, Museum Society of India
  • Member, Rotary Club of Mumbai Mid Town
  • Also enjoys Membership in various Social, Cultural and Philanthropic Bodies.



  • He participated in the 4th Business Leaders’ Symposium at Beijing
    (China) by invitation from World Economic Forum in October 1984. During his wide travels and participation at World Forums, he had the opportunity of reacting with different world personalities such as H. H. Dalai Lama on the one hand and H. H. Pope John Paul II on the other.
  • Participated in Inter-Religious Assembly organised by Pontificium Consilium Pro Dialogo Inter Religiones held at Vatican in October 1999.
  • He participated in the Millennium World Peace Summit of Religious and Spiritual Leaders under the auspices of UN, held in August-September 2000 at the United Nations, New York. Also participated in the Parliament of the World’s Religions held in Barcelona from 7-13 July’2004.
  • He attended the World Blind Union General Assembly held at Melbourne, Australia in November 2000 as an Observer. He also attended the World Blind Union General Assembly held at Cape Town, South Africa, in December 2004. He was the President of the National Association for the Blind, India.
  • He participated in various World Chamber Congress of International Chamber of Congress
  • He also participated in the International Conference organised by Sanskrit Studies Centre and the Department of Oriental Languages, Faculty of Archaeology, Silpakorn University at Bangkok in May 2001.
  • He was invited to attend the Celebrations on the occasion of 300th Anniversary of Chengde Imperial Mountain Resort and attend the World Cultural Heritage Symposium held from 3-6 September’2003.
  • He led the Hindu Delegation to the World and Traditional National Religions Congress hosted by the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan at Astana in September’2003.
  • Participated in BOAO Forum for Asia Annual Conference ,2004 held at BOAO, Hainan Province China on 24-25 April’2004.
  • He attended the 19th World Congress ( Religion : Conflict and Peace ) of the International Association for the History of Religions held at Tokyo from March 24-30 , 2005
  • He was specially invited to attend the inauguration of the Pontification of H H Pope Benedict XVI on 24th April’2005
  • He attended ‘2005 International Academic Conference of Dazu Rock Carvings at ChongQing China from 18th –22nd August’2005 on Invitation .
  • He participated in Human Empowerment Conference at Dallas, Texas from 12-14 October’2007 December 2004 Page 3 of 5
    Shantilal Somaiya Bio Profile Somaiya Trust
  • Dr S K Somaiya had a Private Audience with His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI on Wed. 28th May 2008



  • Member of the International Chamber of Commerce Commission on Environment.
  • Council Member of the Confederation of Asian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (CACCI).
  • Member of the Global Sustainable Development Facility (GSDF) project of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) – Sustainable Human Development).

Dr. Somaiya had abiding interest in the matters pertaining to Environment and Sustainable Development. It was for this that he was invited to address the World Conference – Globe 92 – on Canadian Economic Forum in Canada. He participated in Annual/Bi-annual meetings of ICC and CACCI held at Paris and different parts of the world.



  • Award of “KALYAN MITRAM” from Vidya Shankar Bharati Swami, Pujya Jagdguru Shankaracharya of Karveer Peeth on 31st March 2001.
  • “APOSTOLIC BLESSINGS” from His Holiness the Pope John Paul II from Vatican on 27th April 2001.
  • “Honour of Appreciation of his invaluable services for Interfaith Dialogue” by Pontifical Institute for Foreign Mission Rome and Interfaith Dialogue Centre, SASSARI, Italy in May 2001.
  • “Luminosa Award for Unity 2001”- an Award of the Focolare Movement for his contribution to fostering unity in diversity through education on July 7, 2002.
  • SANSKRIT MITRA AWARD from Ministry of Human Resources Development in September 2003.
  • Honoured with “ Certificate of Appreciation by the General Assembly “ at the 19th World Congress (Religion : Conflict and Peace) of the International Association for the History of Religions held on 30th
    March’2005 at Tokyo.
  • He was Awarded as the “Honorary Professor “ by the Eurasian University on Monday 14th April 24, 2008 at Astana, Kazakhstan December 2004



Apart from his prominent role in various trade associations and industrial bodies, for the last two decades, he had been devoting his close attention to the growth and progress of the Educational Institutions which are being run by Somaiya Vidyavihar, a Society founded by Somaiya Trust, which has more than 34 Institutions on a vibrant and active campus at Mumbai with a student strength of about 27,000 and faculty of more than 1,700. In addition to the colleges of Arts, Science and Commerce, the Somaiya Vidyavihar conducts a Polytechnic, an Engineering College, a Postgraduate Engineering Institute, a Computer Centre, an Institute of Journalism, a Bharatiya Sanskrit Institute and a Centre for Buddhist Studies and a Medical College with a free Hospital. Thus Institutions on Vidyavihar Campus cover a wide range of subjects from the Primary to Postgraduate level in different disciplines: Humanities, Sciences, Education, Commerce, Sanskrit Studies, Engineering, Management, Medicine and Research in various branches. The Campus has developed into a Centre for Culture with “Unity in Diversity”.



An ardent lover of ancient Indian love and a deep student of Bharatiya Culture and of Fine Arts, he had promoted a number of activities having an impact on the cultural regeneration of India. He participated in the World Hindu Conferences in Nepal, in London and in New Jersy under the blessings of Pujya Pramukh Swami. He addressed large gatherings at Kumbh Mela and was a participant in World Sanskrit Conference.



Dr. Somaiya was also closely giving attention to the upliftment of adivasis and conducting an Adivasi Welfare Centre at Dahanu about 120 kms away from Mumbai. The Centre conducted by Shri Girivanavasi Pragati Mandal (GVPM) is sponsored by the Somaiya House with a 40-bed hospital, hostel, a school and a training centre for the boys and girls of Adivasis. Dr. Somaiya promoted “Friends of Tribal Society” (FTS) in Western India of which he was the President. The FTS has so far promoted about 2500 schools in the tribal areas of Western India; besides a number of such schools in Eastern Indian States. He was Vice President of FTS, India.

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Updated: 04/05/2013