Regional Media Training Workshop: Air pollution, its sources and impacts, and mitigation options

List of Participants 


  • Mir Aqa Popal 
    Mir Aqa Popal is Senior Producer and Communication Officer and Head of Media Desk at in Afghanistan. He has seven years of experience in the field of journalism, communication, translation, and interpretation. He has served as a Head of Local and International Media for the same news channel. He is based in Kabul, but is originally from Parwan Province in Afghanistan. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and communication from the University of Kabul.
    He can be reached at 

  •  Najibullah Yamin 
    Najibullah Yamin is a freelance journalist from Afghanistan who focuses on environmental issues. He is also a lecturer in the Environmental Science Faculty of Kabul University. 

    He holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Kabul University; a master’s in natural resource management (NRM) from Mahidol University, Thailand; and post-graduate diploma in international development in the context of NRM from Michigan State University, USA. He has professional certificates in watershed management, environment and social safeguards, climate change diplomacy, industrial ecology and environment, integrated water resources management, air pollution management, agri-business and rural development, construction management and international culture.

    He has 16 years of experience in the fields of environment, water resources management, NRM, public administration, and academia, both in policy and practice, and has worked with the Government of Afghanistan as well as different development organizations.

    Apart from work, he likes running and volunteering, and has been volunteering with the United Nation Volunteer (UNV) Team since 2008 and with the Afghan Red Cross Society (ARCS) since 2005.
    He can be reached at .

  • Noor Gul Shafaq 
    Noor Gul Shafaq is an Afghan journalist, poet, and writer. Born in the southern province of Paktia (Aryob Zazi), he has worked in media for the past seven years and has prepared hundreds of educational and investigative reports on youth, children, and women. He has prepared many radio shows and has written articles on human rights and other social and political issues, as well as some focused on environmental issues like air and water pollution. 

    He has worked at INTERNEWS (UNICEF), Media Support Partnership for Afghanistan (MSPA), Good Morning Afghanistan (GMA), and Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty (RFER) since 2011. He is currently a producer for a radio programme (‘Taandy Sangy’) at Azadi Radio covering issues related to youth while simultaneously continuing his studies in Kabul.
    In 2013, he received third prize from the International Center for Journalists during ‘South Asia’s youth at risk: Story telling workshop for young journalists’. He was given the title best poet in a poetry competition in Afghanistan four years ago and has received many letters of appreciation from human rights organizations, NGOs, and civil society groups. 

    He enjoys photography and writing poems, dramas, and short stories. He can be reached at .


  • Md Sohrab Hossain 
    Sohrab Hossain is the Patuakhali District Correspondent of The Daily Star, the largest English daily newspaper in Bangladesh. He also contributes to the local Bangla daily the Daily Rupantar. He has been working for the The Daily Star since 2002, reporting on environmental pollution, climate change, cyclones Sidr and Aila, minorities, indigenous communities, the Rakhine community in Patuakhali and Barguna District, and other contemporary issues. He has been working for the Daily Rupantar since 1992. He was awarded ‘Best District Correspondent’ by The Daily Star in 2002.
    Born in Patuakhali (coastal district in Southern Bangladesh), he has been leading the local journalist community as General Secretary of the Patuakhali Press Club since July 2012. He has arranged training for local journalists on various issues, including disasters, child and women’s rights, in-depth reporting, and feature writing. He can be reached at .

  • Parvez Babul 
    Pravez Babul is a journalist, columnist, author, human rights activist, and a public relations specialist based in Bangladesh. He is a regular contributor to mainstream newspapers, including The Daily Star, Daily Observer, Financial Express, Daily Sun, Independent, Weekly Holiday, African Herald Express, and other newspapers at home and abroad. He has been covering issues related to climate change adaptation, sustainable development, gender, women’s empowerment, journalism, social communication, poverty and vulnerability in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region, food security, nutrition, and disabilities since the 1990s. 

    Babul has participated in a number of national and international trainings and conferences on different issues. He has written about 200 articles on different issues. Some of his articles have been referred to in different reports on women and climate change in London, the United States of America, and other countries. 

    He is a member of several national and international forums, international networks of journalists, and public relations and development associations, including the Climate Change Media Partnership and HIFA London. He can be reached at ; .

  • Md Rafiqul Islam 
    Md Rafiqul Islam is an environmental reporter based in Dhaka. He is currently working as a Senior Correspondent for the United News of Bangladesh (UNB) – the largest private-sector news agency in Bangladesh. He received graduate and post-graduate degrees in communication and journalism from Chittagong University, Bangladesh. He is currently conducting advanced research on urban environmental information at Dhaka University.

    Over the course of his seven-year tenure with UNB, he has been covering environmental and development issues, including water, climate change, disaster management, forest management, wildlife, indigenous issues, urbanization, poverty, food, and agriculture. He is a regular contributor to Dhaka Courier, a sister concern of UNB and English weekly in Dhaka. He also contributes to thethirdpole and Thomson Reuters Foundation. From November 2011 to December 2012, he contributed to the asia360news, a Singapore-based weekly magazine with a focus across Asia (now defunct).

    In addition to reporting, he works as a consultant in formulating policy on media and communication for national and international agencies like UNDP, Oxfam, and Dhaka-based Institute of Water Modelling. He can be reached at .


  • Dawa Gelmo 
    Dawa Gelmo has worked as a Bureau Correspondent for Kuensel Corporation Limited, Bhutan’s only daily newspaper to cover the nation’s western districts, since 2014. Prior to her current position, she was pursuing her graduate diploma in journalism from the Asian College of Journalism in Chennai, India. 

    Her writing focuses on climate change, environment, rural issues, agriculture, health, and general events. As Bureau Correspondent, she is responsible for covering almost every issue in the Bhutan’s western region. She can be reached at .

  • Alka Chetri 
    Alka has bachelor’s degree in science in biotechnology and is currently working as a journalist for Business Bhutan, a weekly newspaper, and covers issues on environment as her primary beat. She realized the importance of the environment and reporting on climate change and was encouraged to take up the environmental beat after attending an in-country climate change workshop. She realizes that it is one of the least covered beats and feels she could play a part in advocating climate change issues in Bhutan. Her newspaper has a dedicated page for environmental issues called ‘Green Story’, and she writes stories on environmental issues on a weekly basis.

    In the past four years, she has covered several environmental issues, particularly those related to biodiversity conservation and climate change. She was an ICIMOD climate change reporting fellow in 2014.

    Alka plans to pursue a master’s degree in environmental journalism and hopes to make a difference by reporting on climate change and its impacts, not only in Bhutan, but across the region. She can be reached at . 

  • Yeshi Gyaltshen 
    Yeshi is a television reporter working for Bhutan Broadcasting Service (BBS), Bhutan’s only television station. She has been associated with BBS for over five years. 

    She is currently stationed in Paro, one of the 20 districts in Bhutan, and solely looks after news reporting in Paro and Haa districts on areas ranging from developmental issues to environmental and political issues, wildlife conflicts, crime, etc. 
    She can be reached at .


  • Yan (Jessica) Wang 
    Yan Wang (Jessica) is a professional reporter for one of China’s most prestigious news magazines, NewsChina Magazine (the English edition of China Newsweek). She joined the position in May 2008 and launched the environment section of the magazine in August that year. 

    Reporting on environmental issues has been a priority throughout her reporting career. So far she has published over 200 in-depth environmental reports in the magazine. A few of them were also covered in the magazine’s Chinese edition China Newsweek, a periodical with distribution to over 100,000 readers. 

    A number of her reports have prompted feedback from readers, government organizations, environmental non-governmental organizations, and media colleagues. In addition, she has received international fellowships and national awards for her reporting, including from The Environmental Press Awards issued jointly by Chinadialogue and The Guardian for two consecutive years in 2011 and 2012. 
    She can be reached at .

  • Yu Sun
    Sun Yu is Deputy Editor-in-Chief of Environmental Impact Assessment magazine. She has attached great importance and written many reports on air pollution, environment, and climate change issues. Sun Yu was awarded the 8th Sustainable Energy Journalist Star Prize by EarthVillage and the Energy Foundation in 2012 for her report urging China to adopt a PM2.5 air quality standard, which is a big step for China in the environmental field. In 2014, she was awarded the 10th Sustainable Energy Journalist Star Prize for her work on air pollution and energy. She also won the China Environmental Prize, the highest level environmental prize in China, as well as the United Nations Correspondents Association (UNCA) award for her reporting.  She can be reached at  .

  • Alok Kumar Gupta
    Alok Kumar Gupta is Hong Kong-based freelance development and environmental journalist. Before moving to Hong Kong earlier this year, he covered issues of social justice in backward regions of India, primarily Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, and neighbouring Nepal for nearly 12 years for Down to Earth and Hindustan Times. 

    In 2010, the Ford Foundation awarded him a generous two-year fellowship for higher education in the USA to further his work on social change and environment. He is also working to develop a project for extensive coverage of environment issues in Asia using data journalism. He can be reached at  .


  • Padma TV 

Padma TV is a Delhi-based science journalist who has written extensively on Indian research developments and science-policy issues, with a focus on environment, public health, and South Asia. She currently writes for Nature, Nature India, Physics World, Bioworld, and India Climate Dialogue. Padma began her career as a science correspondent at the Press Trust of India (PTI), where she covered science regularly and was also responsible for the production of PTI Science Service, a fortnightly bulletin on national and international science developments. She later ran development communication projects at the South Asia office of Panos Institute. In 2005, she joined SciDev.Net as its first South Asia Regional Coordinator and set up the first South Asian network of science writers. 

She was part of SciDev.Net’s award-winning team in 2005 for best science reporting on the web, given by the Association of British Science Writers (ABSW), for coverage of the great Asian tsunami. She is also a recipient of FAO’s World Food Day prize for best reporting on health and nutrition issues in India.

She has reported from several major international conferences on science, environment, and health. She also helped organize science communications workshops in Asia, notably UNESCO’s workshops on reporting on science of HIV/AIDS for women science journalists in Chennai in 2003 and Bangkok in 2004 and on the need for an online science journalism training module in 2007. Padma holds a master’s degree from the University of Delhi and a post-graduate diploma in bioethics. She can be reached at .

  • Vaishnavi Chandrashekhar 
Vaishnavi Chandrashekhar is a journalist based in Mumbai. She is an editorial consultant with The Times of India and has written for The Christian Science Monitor, The Guardian and The New York Times online, among other publications. She has previously worked as a full-time reporter with The Times of India, as a staff editor with the Christian Science Monitor in Boston, and as the editor of Time Out Mumbai. She has written extensively on environment and development issues, including on climate change, and has a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, New York.  She can be reached at  .

  • Marianne Sharlene Nazareth  

Marianne is an advertising professional turned journalist cum academician. She ran her own accredited advertising agency called Arc Advertising from 1990 to 2004, which she sold in order to concentrate full-time on writing. She has been a freelance journalist since 1995. 

In 2004 she joined the Deccan Herald as Chief Sub Editor and went on in 2006 to pursue a master’s degree in journalism (Erasmus Mundus Masters in Journalism) funded by the EU to upgrade her journalism skills. She attended three universities in the course in Denmark, the Netherlands, and the UK. 

She came back to the Deccan Herald in 2008 and worked as Assistant Editor handling the editorial and the op-ed pages. However, after two years she resigned in order spend her time educating young journalists in the Post Graduate Media Department of St. Joseph’s College as adjunct faculty.

Writing still continues to be her first love, but her focus has changed since 2000 to environmental journalism and gender issues. She writes for several Indian and international publications, and has been invited to attend international science conferences on climate change, environmental issues, and water issues. Since 2004, she has been selected as a fellow by the UNFCCC, UNEP, and UN Water among others. 

Marianne has written a children’s story book called “The One Eyed Ogre & Other Stories” and a novel published by Leadstart titled "Above the Ricefields of Pilerne”, which was published in 2013.

She submitted her PhD thesis in journalism to the University of Madurai in August 2015. She can be reached at  .


  • Theint Theint Aye  

Born in Yamethin in the Mandalay region of Myanmar, Theint Theint Aye is a newscaster at Myanmar International Television (MITV). Although she has been associated with MITV since 2011, she has experience working as an editor, translator, presenter and reporter. MITV is the only English channel in Myanmar. Before joining MITV she worked at Myanmar Radio and Television (MRTV). She holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Meiktila University. She can be reached at .

  • May Myat Thu 

May Myat Thu is a reporter for Traveller Journal. She completed a bachelor’s degree in geography from West Yangon University and also has a diploma in tourism studies and management from the National Management College in Myanmar. Prior to her current job, she worked with public relations at Eleven Media Group in Myanmar. She can be reached at  .


  • Ratna Kumari Chaudhary  

Ratna Kumari Chaudhary is working as a Radio Programme Producer/Reporter for the radio broadcasting service Radio Nepal. She started her career in electronic media in 1994 with State Radio. At present she develops radio programmes related to science and technology and youth, which broadcast from Radio Nepal’s national network.

She has completed a master’s degree from Tribhuvan University in Nepal and has received national and international trainings on radio programme production and survey. She has a keen interest in developing stories and reports for mass communication tools like the radio on climate change, natural disasters, and environmental adaptation and livelihoods. She can be reached at  .

  • Nabin Luitel 
Nabin Luitel has been working at Radio Sagarmatha as an environment reporter. He has also worked in the TV sector and a number of other radio stations. He holds a bachelor’s degree in management from Tribhuvan University. He has been awarded Rotary Journo Environment Award from Rotary International District. He has also received training on radio anchoring, programme production, and news reporting. He is also working in Rajdhani Dainik, a popular national daily, as a culture and sports reporter. 
He can be reached at  

  • Narayan Prasad Prasai 

Narayan Prasai is a freelance video journalist and has also been working as director and camera person for various documentary productions over the last eight years. 

He started his career at the Nepal Forum of Environmental Journalists (NEFEJ), working for the video magazine Aankhijhyal in 1994, after which he gradually shifted to work as a freelance camera person and as a senior camera person at Channel Nepal Television. 

He has over 20 years of experience as a videographer and trainer and has completed training related to videography from different institutions, including basic and advanced audio-video training from Worldview International Foundation, conflict transformation training from FECOFUN, and children’s TV program production from the Danish Embassy in Nepal. He can be reached at .

  • Raghunath Khakurel 

Raghunath Khakurel is a journalist based in Kathmandu, Nepal, writing on rural poverty, development, and climate change issues. At present, he is working with the online portal as a sub-editor. His work focuses on rural poverty, development and problems faced by indigenous peoples and marginalized groups such as Dalits, as well as environmental issues. He also has 15 years of experience working in the field of poverty alleviation and rural water supply and sanitation project as a monitoring and evaluation specialist.

He has completed master’s degree in rural development from Trichandra Multiple Campus under Tribhuvan University, Nepal. He also received a diploma in journalism through a ten-month course conducted by the Nepal Press Institute and has been awarded the Kantipur Journalist Award. He can be reached at .

  • Krishna Adhikari  

Krishna Adhikari is Executive Editor of the National News Agency (RSS), the largest and longest serving news agency in Nepal. He has been associated with RSS for the past 18 years. He has a master’s degree in mass communication and journalism and political science. 

In addition to his association with RSS, he is also a lecturer on mass communication and journalism in different colleges to master’s level students. He also works as a media trainer for different organizations and has conducted trainings for journalists across Nepal. 

He has successfully completed the Asia Journalism Fellowship 2013 Singapore, UNDP Media Fellowship 2014-2015, and WASH Media Fellowship 2014 and has participated in many trainings related on climate change at national and international levels. He can be reached at .

  • Pragati Shahi 

Pragati Shahi is Sub-Editor with The Kathmandu Post, an English national daily published from Kathmandu, Nepal. As an environment and development journalist with more than six years of experience, she has widely reported on issues relevant to environmental sustainability, the mountain ecosystem, natural disasters, and food security. She has also reported on global environmental problems including global warming and climate change and represented her country as a media representative and a young changemaker to climate change negotiations held in Copenhagen and Warsaw. Her paper on regional environmental issues focusing on early warning systems to minimize risks associated with glacial lake outbursts floods was published by the Centre for South Asian Studies (CSAS) in 2012. She can be reached at .

  • Sahina Shrestha 

Sahina Shrestha is a reporter for Nepali Times. She has written on social issues mostly related to women and children, education, and culture. After the Nepal Earthquake in April, she has written extensively on the reconstruction efforts. More recently, she has developed an interest in gender and environment. She has a bachelor’s degree in media studies from Kathmandu University and was awarded the Nepal Bidhya Bhusan 'Ga' and Nepal Bidya Padak by the Ministry of Education in 2014. She can be reached at .


  • Shereen Bano  

Shereen is a journalist currently working for Ausaf and Azan newspapers in Pakistan. She a master’s degree in mass communication from Karakurum International University Gilgit. She is from the far-flung area of Gilgit-Baltistan. She is also an athlete and won a gold medal in the Josh Games held in Pakistan in 2013. She can be reached at .

  • Ahsan Jamil 

Ahsan Jamil is a Pakistani-based science journalist hailing from a modest family background. He was influenced at an early age by natural sciences, which provided him the impetus to complete a bachelor’s degree in geophysics from Bahria University, Islamabad. Soon after, he served as an intern for Halliburton Worldwide Limited. Ahsan had a keen interest in atmospheric sciences and natural phenomenon like climate change, earthquakes, and volcanoes, which led him to work for three months with the Pakistan Meteorological Department as an Assistant Observer in the National Centre of Seismic Monitoring before he began studying science journalism by freelancing and covering various issues related to climate change and atmospheric sciences.

He is currently working as Assistant Editor with Technology Times, a Pakistani newspaper focused on science and technology. Since joining, he has produced supplements on environmental sciences, climate change, nuclear power generation, and much more. His prime focus areas are climate change, environmental hazards, geohazards, and renewable energy technologies.

He is highly accredited in various echelons of the Pakistan Science Foundation (PSF) and National Academy of Young Scientists (NAYS-Pak). He previously served as Sub-Editor of the NAYS-Pak e-newsletter. He was also recently selected to ICIMOD’s Media Fellowship 2015 for Pakistani journalists. He can be reached at .

  • Ferya Ilyas 

Ferya Ilyas is a Pakistani journalist associated with national daily The Express Tribune, an affiliate of the International New York Times, since 2011. She started out working with the newspaper's website, where she reported and edited news stories and also managed social media and multimedia sections. Coordinating with reporters, monitoring news sources, and doing live updates for major events were some of the daily tasks she undertook. 

Ferya recently branched out into features reporting and has reported on a wide array of topics including civic issues, environment, and travel. She is interested in specializing in urban reporting, particularly on issues linked to climate change.

Ferya has a bachelor's degree in mass communication from the University of Karachi, where she specialized in print journalism. Ferya's final year thesis was on cultural stereotypes in modern comedy shows. She also worked as an assistant researcher for two research projects for advocacy group Bytes for All on ‘state of the internet in Pakistan’ and ‘online hate speech’. 

Ferya has a strong background in volunteer work, having worked in different capacities with various local and international organizations in Pakistan and the USA during the 2005 Kashmir Earthquake, 2011 floods, and 2013 Balochistan Earthquake. 
 She can be reached at .

  • Mohammad Saleem 

Saleem Shaikh is a passionate freelance climate change and development science journalist based in Pakistan. With over 12 years of experience in print, online and broadcast journalism, he has served at different media organizations of national and global repute. 

At present, he works as climate change and development correspondent from Pakistan for AlertNet Climate of the Thomson Reuters Foundation, a London-based global media outlet climate change news portal, accessed by millions a week for stories and analysis of climate, humanitarian and development issues. 

Previously, working at The News and Dawn newspapers, Geo TV, and Dawn News TV, he published hundreds of exclusive stories, many of them investigative, on development, environment, renewable energy, agriculture, irrigation, health, water, economy, sanitation, and gender issues. 

He has reported from several international conferences on climate change mitigation and adaptation for different national and international news organizations, including online, print, and broadcast media. Some examples include UNFCCC’s COP 18, COP 19, and COP 20; Community Based Adaptation Conference (Vietnam) of the International Institute for Environment and Development; various conferences of the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (Nepal); and the Livelihoods and Climate Risk Conference (Indonesia) of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

He has also produced a number of multimedia pieces/short video documentaries that reflect upon the vagaries of shifting weather patterns and their impacts on water, irrigation, agriculture, food security, pastoralism, desertification, and land management. 

He has some fellowships to his credit, and is currently media fellow at WaterAid-UK, UNFCCC, Panos-South Asia, and Lead-Pakistan. He also conducts media trainings for journalists on environment, climate change, and development science reporting in collaboration with national and international governmental and non-governmental organizations. He recently conducted training sessions in Pakistan on reporting natural disasters and climate change impacts on glaciers, agriculture, and water. He can be reached at .