Art Historian, Independent Scholar, New Delhi
Shobita Punja holds a Bachelor degree in Art History, a Master's degree in Ancient History from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and another Master's degree in Art Education from Stanford University, California and was awarded a doctoral degree for her contribution to the field of Art Education in 1982. She has been invited to lecture on Indian Art at various institutions and universities in India and abroad.
She is author of over 15 books including Museums of India, (Hong Kong, 1990). Divine Ecstasy - The Story of Khajuraho (Viking Penguin, India, 1992). Daughters the Ocean - Discovering the Goddess Within. (Viking Penguin, India in 1996). Dr. Punja began her professional life working at the Centre for Cultural Resources and Training, and then at INTACH as the Chief Consultant, on the multi–disciplinary project for the conservation and development of Khajuraho. She worked as Chief Programme Officer and set up the Heritage Education and Communication Service for INTACH, Delhi. Her last appointment was as CEO of the National Culture Fund, Ministry of Culture, and Government of India from 2011-13.
She has also worked on a professional team for the restoration and up-gradation of several museums Chowmahalla Palace and Museum, Hyderabad, Jai Vilas Palace Museum, Gwalior, Reis Magos Fort, Goa and others historical sites.
Dr Punja served on the Governing Council and Executive Committee of INTACH. She is a member of the Governing Council of the Centre for Environment Education, Ahmedabad, and a Trustee of the Helen Hamlyn Trust, UK and Sanskriti Foundation, New Delhi, and also a Trustee of the Mehrangarh Museum Trust, Jodhpur.