Santosh Shah has been recognized as a young pioneer in innovative media. He holds a world record (RecordSetter/NewYork) for being the ‘Youngest Anchor of an English Political Show’ – hosting ‘Power Talks’ at the age of 28 in 2009. Power Talks, Nepal’s first English talk show launched on a national channel focused on foreign affairs and politics, has interviewed diplomats, heads of UN agencies, heads of states and world leaders. The show played a crucial role is shaping Nepal’s peace-process and constitution drafting during 2009-2011, when the nation was transitioning between post civil war, end of monarchy and promulgating a new constitution.
Shah launched a reality television show based on debating format named – Nepal’s Top 7 Debaters, in 2012 where he serves as a permanent judge. The show is running in 2018 in its 7thseason and has played a crucial role in shaping national discussions and has provided several debate angles to the parliamentary discussions. Shah is the producer of the television series – Nepal’s 77 Women Leaders, where unsung heroes are featured on a national channel providing them the encouragement to continue their endeavors to serve societies and encourage women leadership in socio-economic and socio-political sectors.
At the age of 13, Shah started writing for the national newspapers ‘The Rising Nepal’ and ‘Gorkhapatra’, and at the age of 14 began writing for international publications. In 2002 at the age of 21, he launched a monthly English youth magazine “Today’s Youth” in Nepal, where young writers and journalists; whom he trained, reported edited and published on national issues and events – both political and social. The magazine became very popular and gave voice to the young generation in mainstream politics and national affairs.
In 2002, when he decided to work from Kathmandu as his base, Nepal was at the peak of a bloody revolution. The decade-long (1996-2006) civil war, the royal massacre in 2001, the military coup by the king in 2002, loss of a quarter of the population to foreign employment, and finally the pro-democratic movement and reinstatement of democracy in 2006 marked a dramatic shift in Nepal’s socio-politics. In November 2007, the Maoists rebels signed peace accord and the Constituent Assembly elections were held in April 2008. The first sitting of the Constituent Assembly abolished monarchy and declared Nepal as a republic, the new constitution in 2015 leading to violent protests.
During these trying times, Santosh Shah has survived and established himself as a national figure. He has come a long way from his birthplace, a farming village in southern plains of Nepal, but feels his journey is nowhere near completion. Believing education is the only way for people to reach their maximum potential, he is working on founding a new media college in Kathmandu for aspiring journalists, writers, editors, photographers and creative minds.