Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg

21, Jor Bagh
New Delhi 110003, India

Ph: +91 (0)11 2462 6684
Fax: +91 (0)11 2462 6685

HCSA Staff

Prof. Dr. Axel Michaels Position:Head Coordinator

Axel Michaels, is both a scholar of Indology and Religious Studies. Since 1996 he is Professor of Classical Indology, South Asia Institute, University of Heidelberg. In 2001 he was elected as the Spokesman of the Collaborative Research Centre SFB 619 "Ritual Dynamics”. Since November 2007 he is one of the Directors of the Cluster of Excellence "Asia and Europe in a Global Context – Shifting Asymmetries in Cultural Flows". Current fields of interest are social history and history of Hinduism, theory of rituals, life cycle rites of passage in Nepal as well as the cultural and legal history of Nepal. Major book publications include: Reisen der Götter. Der nepalische Pashupatinatha-Tempel und sein rituelles Umfeld, 2 parts (St. Augustin: VGH Wissenschaftsverlag, 1994), Hinduism. Past and Present (Princeton University Press 2004); (with Niels Gutschow): Handling Death. The dynamics of Death and Ancestor Rituals among the Newars of Bhaktapur, Nepal (Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Publ.,2005); The Price of Purity: The Religious Judge in 19th Century Nepal (Torino: CESMEO, 2005), (with Niels Gutschow): Growing up. Hindu and Buddhist Initiation Rituals among Newar Children in Bhaktapur, Nepal (Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Publ., 2008), Śiva in Trouble. Rituals and Festivals at the Paśupatinātha temple of Deopatan, Nepal (New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008), Manus Gesetzbuch transl., (Berlin: Verlag der Weltreligionen/Insel Verlag, 2010) and Grammars and Morphologies of Ritual Practices in Asia (co-ed., Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Publ., 2010)
In 2010, the rectorate entrusted him with the establishment of the HCSA as Head Coordinator for collaboration with South Asia. Prof. Michaels is also member of the DFG-DST Joint Advisory Committee.

PD Dr. Elvira Graner Position:Representative

Previously she headed the Kathmandu Office of Heidelberg University. Until recently she was a Research Fellow at the Institute of Governance Studies (IGS) at BRAC University in Dhaka. Her previous assignments include being a (Senior) Lecturer at the Dept. of Geography at the South Asia Institute from 1995 onwards, and the Resident Representative of the SAI's Kathmandu Office (1996/97 and 2003/05). At the Institute of Governance Studies (IGS) in Dhaka she was active as an integrated expert from autumn 2009 onwards. This position was co-funded by the Federal German Government (BMZ). Her fields of research focus on social and economic policy analyses. She joined Heidelberg University in January 2013 and has since been heading the Delhi office of the Heidelberg Centre South Asia.

Mr. Suboor Bakht, M.B.A

Position: General Manager

Suboor Bakht studied Biochemistry at Delhi University, India. He completed his Masters in Business Administration from Delhi and worked with multinational corporates in Quality Assurance and Intellectual Property Rights functions. He joined the Cluster 'Asia and Europe in a Global Context' in March 2009 as a research assistant and is now in charge of a study on Muslim Popular Visual Culture. Since November 2010 he works as Managing Officer for the Heidelberg Centre South Asia in Delhi.

Mr. Gabar Chauhan, M.A.

Position: Managing Accountant

Gabar Singh Chauhan received his master's degree in Economics from DAV College Dehra Dun, University of Garhwal, in 1983. He cleared two groups of Cost and Works Accountants of India before he started working for the South Asia Institute, Heidelberg University from 1986-88, as a research assistant with special focus on the folk traditions of northern India's Himachal and Garhwal regions. After a brief intermezzo as an administrative officer in IGNCA, Gabar Singh joined the South Asia Institute Branch Office in New Delhi as accountant and secretary in 1990. His responsibilities have been extended to cover the accounting of the Cluster Liaison Office in 2009, and of HCSA in 2010.