After completing her schooling at the Convent of Jesus & Mary, Simla, Anu pursued higher education at Loreto House College, Calcutta & subsequently emigrated to the USA, where she pursued post graduate studies and a career, simultaneously.
She did an extensive stint in Marketing & Sales at the California Mart for a prestigious Jewellery and Garment outfit, from 1981-’87. Being a quick learner, she came to deliver goods at this job with self-confidence & to the utmost satisfaction of both, her employers as well as her clients.
The pressures of a highly professional US market further enhanced her astute and analytical bend of mind and her acumen for business. Exposure to the best in Art, Culture, Films and Entertainment sharpened her insights and understanding, particularly as regards TV & Media.
Anu moved back to India in 1987 and married Shashi Ranjan, an alumnus from FTII, Pune. Post her marriage; she explored & successfully ventured in several of her business interests such as garments, textile & interior design.
Her interaction with the Films & Television world increased because of Shashi’s involvement in this sphere. She soon started assisting him in the Production of TV Software & this also brought her face to face with various aspects & problems that subsisted in the TV industry.
Anu founded The Indian Television Academy (ITA), a ground-breaking & significant movement at the time which brought together and galvanised the entire TV workforce in the country, under one umbrella.
The ITA produced a TV Fraternity song to highlight the camaraderie of the Industry – its music video was telecast on all the major channels with most favourable frequency – making it to be an anthem of sorts for the TV frat!
The ITA subsequently launched the first ever totally TV-centric Indian Television Academy Awards, to recognise & reward the excellence that was present on the canvas of Indian Television.
After the tremendous successes of the Hero Honda sponsored ITA Awards, HHITA 2001, the ITA organised the ITA Seminar, a first ever platform for interaction amongst the disparate quarters of the Industry, On Television.
The ITA repeated history with the stupendous success of the ITA Awards, 2002, where the Southern Indian television channels were also included in its ambit.
The ITA produced a social welfare documentary, ‘Who Cares?’ dealing with the state of roads in Bombay; this was successfully exhibited at various cinema halls.
The ITA also organised a highly productive ITA Symposium on TRP’s.
The ITA called attention to the multifarious roles that of women effectively play in India today by starting to annually celebrate International Women’s Day – the first year was celebrated in association with De Beers and Indiatimes.com
The ITA launched, with great fanfare and style, GR8! TV MAGAZINE – The Only Television Glossy in the World on August 26, 2003. This publication continued the struggle towards cementing the entire TV Industry into one cohesive whole. It held up & upheld the first ever mirror for Television, reflecting all its glory and glitz through GR8! TV MAGAZINE
2004 to’05 onwards…
Makes the ITA an official conduit of sorts, between Producers and Channels – thereby fruitfully resolving some long-standing disputes between the two.
Backed by Anu’s endless enthusiasm and support, the ITA Awards become the most coveted, recognised & respected symbol of excellence on the canvas of Television in the country.
The Awards also proved to be hugely popular with the TV-watchers, as the TRP’s of the broadcast hit record highs on SONY and STAR PLUS.
Similarly, the now established GR8! Women Achievers’ Awards also become a momentous annual occasion that celebrates Indian Womanhood in all it’s glory.
The ITA rises to the occasion, as always, when the Tsunami hit the Indian coasts… garners the support & participation of the entire TV industry and stages a memorable concert in support of the Tsunami victims (entitled, Tsunami Relief & You). The concert results in raising sizeable funds which are subsequently passed on to organisations responsible for coordinating victims’ relief efforts.
GR8! TV MAGAZINE continues to make giant leaps forward with the introduction of a Hindi edition – launched in September, 2005, this publication extracts a genuinely positive response in the Hindi belt.
In addition to all of the above, Anu elevates the organisation’s Event management division to new levels with the conceptualising & production of important events – these range from the launch of Bentley Motors in India to the organising of SONY TV’s intra-channel Awards, ‘Aap Jaisa Koi’.
A grand milestone in her wide-ranging occupations has been the initiation of a social movement titled “Beti”. This social awareness campaign, ‘beti’ was launched to enhance awareness about & to fight the menace of Female Foeticide which is unchecked all over the country.
The ITA organised a Star-studded Charity Cricket Match, called ‘The GR8! Welfare Cup’, to create awareness about the ‘beti’ movement – This event, participated by the TV-fraternity, was a roaring success.
Ever ready to take on issues of social concern, the ITA even organised a Protest Morcha of high impact, in opposition to the mismanagement existing in Mumbai which resulted in the July floods in 2005.
The year 2007 marks as another highpoint in Anu Ranjan’s journey as an achiever. This year in the ITA Awards, something truly unique took place thanks entirely to her inspiration. A Nite of Honours was organised to celebrate the glory of those who have made a difference to the medium of Television in the country. Thereby, from Amitabh Bachchan (The ITA Laurel for Ultimate Eminence) to Aroon Purie to Ronnie Screwvala and what have you, were all conferred upon special Honours by the Academy.
Similarly, the GR8! Women Achievers Awards have gone from strength to strength with the roster of the honour studded with more and more women achievers of the highest order like Medha Patkar, Khushboo, Anoushka Shankar and others in 2006, Yamini Krishnamurthy, Saira Banu, Priyanka Chopra and others in 2007, Neeta Ambani, Waheeda Rehman, Preity Zinta and others in 2008, Rajshree Birla, Asin, Dipika Padukone, Zeenat Aman, Nalini Chidambaram and others in 2009, Asha Parekh, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Sushmita Sen, Rukhsana Kausar and others in 2010. In sum, all through the years of these Awards we have seen women of highest distinction being honoured by GR8! – all because of the Anu Ranjan’s endeavours.
And she continues to push & steer the ITA as well as GR8! to fresher glories. The two have already carved out a unique niche for themselves on the canvas of Television in India, working towards the holistic welfare of the medium. Hers have been the dreams that dared and for the first time ever, she has been the one who realised the sweep and sway of Television on its own rather than being just an appendage to cinema. She has endeavoured relentlessly towards bringing all the disparate sectors like broadcasting, production and talent of the industry under one canopy, the canopy of The ITA.
Today, this lone crusader has the support and goodwill of the entire TV-fraternity with her to realise the aim of putting Indian Television at par with the global best.
GR8! Women Awards gone Global…
In the last six years she has added other feathers to her cap by taking GR8! Women Awards to Middle East. Held in Dubai, the ceremonies have attracted hordes of distinguished personalities from the topmost echelons of the society there including Women of substance besides having the privilege of the presence of Royalty, too.
The Awards have become a great platform for Women issues at large. Indeed, Anu Ranjan has turned over a new leaf in Dubai because of her noble endeavours.