Desh is currently Consultant (Governance & Research/Law) at the National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog), the premier policy ‘Think Tank’ of the Government of India that provides both directional and policy inputs. At NITI Aayog, Desh works on policy and related matters pertaining to law, economics, sports and governance related aspects. He has held this position since September 2017.
He is one of the only sports attorneys in India, and prior to joining NITI Aayog, headed the only sports law practice among the full service Indian corporate law firms. As part of J. Sagar Associates in the National Capital Region, India, he represented clients in the sports and entertainment industries, including soccer clubs, federations, athletes, and a premier sports apparel manufacturer. He was also a core member of the team that advised one of the largest global sports leagues on their India initiative.
Desh is the author of the book ‘Not out! The incredible story of the Indian Premier League’, published by Penguin Random House and released in April 2016. He is a frequent columnist with a variety of national publications including The Hindu, The Indian Express, Economic Times, Outlook magazine, and others. He writes on law, economics, governance, the business and law of sports, entertainment law, and other law-related current affairs.
Desh was a top-ranked tennis player in both India and Canada, ranked in the top 5 in India consistently. He is formerly a national finalist in singles in Under-18s. He completed his B.A. (Honours) in Economics from St. Stephen’s College, New Delhi where he captained the tennis team, and also captained the Delhi University team. He then completed his B.A. with Honors from the University of Iowa on a tennis scholarship, where he was a three time letter-winner and an Academic All-Big 10. He completed his Juris Doctorate at William and Mary law school, and is licensed to practice in New York and India.