Our Chairman

Mr. Som Dev Gupta has devoted his life to gaining knowledge and self-growth and, in turn, has helped countless individuals learn and grow in the process. Mr. Gupta was born on December 6, 1942. After graduating with (a) Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree, he joined his eldest brother, Dr. Jai Dev Gupta, in managing Lakshmi Medical Hall, a pharmaceutical wholesale business. Through their hard work and dedication, the brothers expanded the business to form Lakshmi Medical Agencies and Lakshmi Medical Traders, and become the largest distributors of pharmaceutical products in the states of Haryana, Punjab, and Himachal Pradesh.

Mr. Gupta has applied his leadership skills to give back to the community through his passion for music. While running LM Agencies, with the help and support of Pt. Ganesh Prashad Sharma, he aided Sangeetalok, an annual event in which various renowned “World Fame” classical vocalists and instrumentalists come to Ambala Cantt to perform for the community. His desire to share the experience of live classical music with others and celebrate legendary artists motivated Mr. Gupta to go from door-to-door to raise funds for the artists’ stays. To this day, he and his wife host some of the artists that come for Sangeetalok in their home. They tell Mr. Gupta that they still love to perform in Ambala because of the hospitality they receive during their visits. Some of the artists that have performed at Sangeetalok over the years include Pt. Jasraj, Pt. Kumar Gandharv, Smt. Kishori Amonkar, Pt. Buddhaditya Mukherjee, Pts. Rajan and Sajan Misra, Pt. Sanjeev Abhyankar, Smt. Nirmala Devi, Ustad Zakir Hussain, Dr. N. Rajam, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasiya, Smt. Siddheshwari Devi, Begum Akhtar and so many more. Even after moving out of the state for 12 years, Mr. Som Dev Gupta continued to support Sangeetalok annually.

Spirituality has also been an integral part of Mr. Gupta’s life. When his children were young, Mr. and Mrs. Gupta began visiting the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry. He started diligently learning about the philosophy, reading spiritual texts and over time, he began understanding and analyzing the philosophy through daily reading and annotation. Concurrently, he initiated a daily satsang in which community members could share their spiritual experiences and read and understand spiritual texts together. With the inspiration from his elder sister Ms. Jnan Vati Gupta, he was instrumental in building a branch of Sri Aurobindo Society in Ambala Cantt and brought the relics of Sri Aurobindo from the Pondicherry Ashram to the branch in Ambala.

In 2001, Mr. and Mrs. Gupta moved to Pondicherry to continue their spiritual journey. Both of them volunteered at several places associated with the Ashram, and Mr. Gupta served as the manager of the Seaside Guest House, a prominent guest house for travelers and Ashramites. Mr. and Mrs. Gupta continued to live there until 2013, when they returned to Ambala Cantt to be closer to their family and community.

After returning to Ambala at the age of 71, Mr. Gupta served as the financial director of Advanced Microdevices Pvt. Ltd. Recently, to carry out his brother’s (Dr. Jai Dev Gupta) vision, he helped establish and is the Chairman of Samanvit Shiksha Kendra, an innovative school that provides free transportation, meals, uniforms, and educational materials in addition to cultivating a holistic education for K-12 students. The school’s vision is to make students feel valued and provide them with what is necessary to learn and to improve their learning process. The teachers take student opinions into account, research and apply different teaching methods from abroad, and Mr. Gupta himself teaches the students about the values of creativity and open-mindedness. Mr. Som Dev Gupta’s dream of creating such a school has come to fruition and he will continue to thrive along with the students.