Wednesday, October 4, 2023
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South Asian Women: Breaking Barriers and Going Places

Monica Sethi Darpan, 21 Mar, 2023
  • South Asian Women: Breaking Barriers and Going Places

Highlighting stories of seven South Asian women in BC who are Breaking Barriers and Going Places.

Darpan Magazine's March-April issue has become synonymous with the spirit of International Women's Day. In the year 2020, the magazine decided to bring to the fore South Asian women living in British Columbia who have found their purpose and voice and are willing to share their stories to inspire others in the community.

Keeping up with the tradition, this issue marks the fourth year as DARPAN celebrates the achievements of seven women steering clear of stereotypes and forging their own paths. While each comes from a different professional background, they are all resilient, hardworking and fully committed to their calling in life. 

In British Columbia, there are so many remarkable South Asian women who are leaders in their respective fields. Be it in politics, health, social work, business, or broadcasting – their contribution has been crucial for the growth and development of the province and BC’s South Asian community.

These brilliant women have strived to reach their goals; they have shattered the glass ceiling to turn their dreams into reality. They have not let anyone hold them back – and that is our message for young South Asian women and girls who have big dreams. Don’t let anything or anyone hold you back! 

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Meet this year's achievers whose journeys have only made them stronger, even unstoppable.


Photo: A Master Media

Venue: Maharaja Banquet Hall, Surrey 


Meet BC’s seven South Asian female role models as they share their thoughts, aspirations and advice with DARPAN. They are superwomen in their own right and a wonderful example of female power.



Niki Sharma, Attorney General of British Columbia 

On December 7th, 2022, Niki Sharma was appointed the Attorney General of British Columbia, the first woman of colour to hold this position across provinces in Canada. As someone who has been a part of the justice system for almost two decades, she understands it can work for or against the people. The realization drives her to show up to work filled with gratitude and ready to make a positive change..... CLICK TO READ HER STORY

Kam Raman, Vice President, Group Advantage at RBC 

Known for her ability to engage diverse teams, Kam Raman has been growing her career in the financial services industry over the past 20 years and has embraced the importance and value of life-long learning. Throughout her career, she has been recognized for her business acumen, communication, collaboration, and leadership abilities....CLICK TO READ HER STORY

Wendy Mehat, Officer in Charge, Ridge Meadows RCMP

As Officer in Charge, Wendy oversees policing, police response, community welfare initiatives, human resources, and more in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows cities. Amidst all this, she prioritizes the mental and physical well-being of her police officers, who see so much trauma all around them. At the same time, she feels strongly about supporting youth in the community, particularly those undergoing mental health issues.....CLICK TO READ HER STORY

Kiran Toor, President, Kids Play Youth Foundation 

As president of the organization, Kiran collaborates with leaders and volunteers in Vancouver, Calgary, and Toronto in Canada; Punjab in India; Columbia; and Uganda, who help facilitate multiple programs which include sports, mentorship, education, counselling & mental health, environment, and community engagement.....CLICK TO READ HER STORY

Tarannum Thind, Host & Producer at Chai with T Podcast  

In 1997, Tarannum immigrated to Canada with her family and tried her hand at different study programs. Her dream, however, was to study Broadcast Journalism at BCIT. However, while still on the waitlist in 2003, she auditioned and got selected to host a multicultural show on Channel M in Hindi and Punjabi. It began the professional journey of one of the most sort-after, familiar, and personable South Asian media personalities in Vancouver and beyond.... CLICK TO READ HER STORY

Saje Brar, Director of Operations at Surrey Eagles & Governor of BCHL 

At Yale University, she was the first South Asian to play on the Yale Woman Soccer Team. As NCAA Division 1 soccer player, she was among the top soccer players across colleges in the USA and won twice the Ivy League Rookie of the Week award in her first year. In 2022, Saje graduated from Yale, majoring in Political Science and completing her four years as an athlete..... CLICK TO READ HER STORY

Hema Bhatt, Senior Vice President, Natu Oil Services Inc 

This year, Natu Oil Services Inc., one of North America's largest sustainable refined palm oil suppliers, celebrates twenty years in business. The accomplishment seems even more significant when one considers that an Indian immigrant family from Malaysia started the company in Coquitlam (in a basement) and managed to expand its operations and build offices in five countries, including Canada, the USA, India, Malaysia, and Singapore..... CLICK TO READ HER STORY




Photo: A Master Media

Venue: Maharaja Banquet Hall, Surrey 

The Segment has been powered by Thind Properties


Crystal Consulting Group of Companies. 


A Word from Thind Properties 

The tremendous achievements of women in our community symbolize the advancements towards greater gender equality and inclusion. At home, in our South Asian community, we continue to support the empowerment of women – our mothers, wives, sisters and daughters. Our proud South Asian heritage is rooted in the essence of the modern woman, as we commemorate her strength, courage and resilience.

Congratulations to the incredible 7 South Asian female achievers on Darpan's March/April issue who have made the community proud.

Thind Properties Ltd is a successful name in the real estate industry and the credit behind the company's success goes to hardworking and strong women who helped shape it to what it is today.

Darpan Magazine's The Power Women of Influence Gala is a commendable undertaking and the evening will be remembered by many for bringing the community together to put a spotlight on outstanding local and global women. 

A Word from  CCGC. 

Crystal Consulting Group of Companies is honoured to power a segment that is all about female representation and women empowerment. 

It is so great to see Darpan wanting to share the stories of successful women of the South Asian community through the March/April issue of Darpan Magazine dedicated to International Women's Day. 

It is salute worthy that they want to take their endeavour to new heights and celebrate local and global South Asian women with key stakeholders, respected community and business leaders, and political dignitaries.

The Darpan Power Women of Influence Gala will be an inspiration for many young women who want to achieve great heights in their respective fields.

A Huge Thank You To All Our Valuable Sponsors for making the Gala Possible!!!  


Meet JoJo Das

Meet JoJo Das

Until having moved to Vancouver in 2013 for his bachelor’s degree at UBC, he never considered himself to be an outdoor enthusiast. He developed a strong love and passion for rock climbing during his visits to Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil Waututh First Nations. What started as just an interest has now turned into his passion.

Meet Gian Singh Kothli

Meet Gian Singh Kothli

While walking through Stanley Park, his love for hiking grew deeper and deeper. He is the uncrowned king of Grouse Grind which is one of the most difficult hikes in Vancouver. He also had received an appreciation letter from British Columbia’s Premier John Horgan for his undying spirit and contributions to Punjabi literature, poetry, and having climbed the Grouse Grind over 200 times.

Meet Indra Hayre

Meet Indra Hayre

She advocates for diversity and inclusion in all aspects of life. Indra is an avid skier, runner, hiker and mountain biker. She is also the founder of the Instagram-based community called Inclu-SKI-vity where she elevates the voices of the traditionally marginalized groups in the snow-sport community by sharing their stories through interviews. 

Meet Ajinder Mangat

Meet Ajinder Mangat

Till date, he has done almost every hike there is in British Columbia and even enjoys road trips across the country as well as the US to explore different hiking spots. He has also added Angel's Landing (Utah), which is one of the most dangerous hikes in the world to his kitty.

Women of Steel: Inspiring Stories of South Asian Female Achievers

Women of Steel: Inspiring Stories of South Asian Female Achievers

These women of steel have shattered the glass ceiling, and are making sure the next generation of women are well-equipped with the tools as well as the power to take charge of their own lives. Meet these incredible 7 South Asian female leaders who are paving the path for the next generation of women to create their own remarkable stories. 

Women of Steel: Neetu Garcha

Women of Steel: Neetu Garcha

Neetu Garcha is a reporter with Global BC and the Anchor of the Global BC Weekend News Hour at 6. Some recent highlights include being live from BC Green and BC NDP election-night headquarters in 2017 and 2020 respectively, on what would become historic nights in both years for the parties and provincial politics.