South Asian Law Students Association

Mission: UCLA SALSA is dedicated to providing a forum for South Asian law students to exchange thoughts and ideas, develop a community support and referral network, and address the needs of the larger South Asian community—particularly its most marginalized members.

Meet the Board

  • 2020-2021 SALSA Board

    Ronak Patel, Co-Chair

    Ronak Patel is a second-year law student at UCLA School of Law. Originally from Livingston, NJ, he graduated from Northwestern University with a B.A. in Political Science in 2015. Prior to law school, Ronak worked as a technology consultant with Capgemini where he focused on client delivery and data visualization.

    Along with serving as SALSA's Co-Chair, Ronak is also the Student Bar Association Secretary and the National Lawyers Guild at UCLA's Co-Chair. He is a staff editor for Volume 68 of the UCLA Law Review and Deputy Editor in Chief of the Asian Pacific American Law Journal. Ronak is a Law Fellow Mentor, and a part of the Critical Race Studies Specialization and David J. Epstein Public Interest Law and Policy Program. This past summer he worked at LatinoJustice PRLDEF, assisting in their pursuit for expanded voter protection and access procedures in Florida during the COVID-19 pandemic.


    Madhavi Narayanan, Co-Chair

    Madhavi is a second-year law student from Seattle, WA focusing on international human rights law. She graduated with a joint degree in political science and South Asian Studies from Harvard in 2017 before moving to Chennai, India to do a two-year fellowship with Teach for India, where she taught 4th and 5th grade students at a government school.

    Madhavi is specializing in International and Comparative Law and Critical Race Studies at UCLA Law where she works closely with the Promise Institute for Human Rights and serves as an editor for the Indigenous People's Journal for Law and Resistance. Madhavi is extremely passionate about the field of human rights and issues of justice in South Asia, where she hopes to practice someday.


    Aaliya Kapadia, Admissions and Community Building Chair

    Aaliya is a second-year law student from Northern California. She is in the Business Law Specialization, Critical Race Studies and the Public Interest Law & Policy Program. Aaliya graduated from Santa Clara University with a B.S. in Political Science and Interpersonal Communication.

    Before coming to Los Angeles, Aaliya worked as a paralegal at an immigration and nationality law firm, Van Der Hout LLP in San Francisco. She worked on asylum applications, TPS waivers, U-visa filings as well as business immigration visas, such as H-1Bs and L-1 visas. Her favorite part of her job was working with her DACA and asylum clients, whose perseverance inspired her to advocate for humane immigration reform and apply to law school. At UCLA Law, she is on the board of SALSA, Law Women, Womxn of Color Collective and Law Students for Immigrant Justice.


    Jincy Varughese, Social Justice/Resistance Co-Chair

    Jincy is a 2L at UCLA Law. She grew up in Houston, Texas and graduated with a bachelor's degree in Environment, Economics, and Politics from Claremont McKenna College. After college, she worked with labor unions on union organizing campaigns and with a community-based organization on campaigns related to environmental and economic justice issues here in Los Angeles.

    Jincy is part of the Public Interest Law and Policy Program and the Critical Race Studies Specialization. She is also a board member of the Labor and Employment Law Association, a board member of the Tenants Law Association, a staff editor of the UCLA Law Review, and volunteers with the Bet Tzedek Worker's Rights clinic This past summer, she interned at the California Labor Commissioner's Office.


    Ankeet Ball, Professional Development Chair

    Ankeet Ball is a second-year law student at the UCLA School of Law. Ankeet graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in Economics-Political Science and a concentration in American Studies. His research on slavery and its intersection with the history of Columbia has been featured in the Washington Post and the New York Times. Before law school, he worked as a corporate practice analyst at Dentons US LLP and a paralegal at an alternative asset management firm. This past summer, he served as a law clerk for the US Attorney's Office in the Southern District of California.

    In addition to serving as the Professional Chair for SALSA, he is also a logistics assistant for the UCLA Moot Court program and a Film/TV Events Chair for the Entertainment Law Association. He hopes to fuse his interests in business, law, and entertainment by guiding and advising emerging ventures in the media world.


    Samiha Matin, 2L Representative

    Samiha is a second-year law student at UCLA School of Law, from Denver, CO. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Denver with a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies and Sociology and a minor in Socio-Legal Studies. During college, she interned with Harding & Associates, PC focusing on personal injury cases.

    In addition to serving as 2L Representative of SALSA, Samiha is also the Co-Chair for the Muslim Law Students Association and the Chief Publications Editor for Volume 18 of the UCLA Journal of Islamic and Near Eastern Law. This past summer, she worked as a legal intern in the Unaccompanied Minors Division of the International Institute of Los Angeles.


    Alex Natarajan, Social Chair

    Alex majored in Public Policy at Duke University with a minor in Religion and a certificate in Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Prior to UCLA, Alex worked at a Success Academy middle school in Brooklyn where she managed testing, data analytics, and special education. At UCLA, Alex is pursuing the business specialization and is involved in several activities, including the Sports Law Federation and the Unhoused Resident Advocacy and Outreach Clinic. Outside of law school, Alex spends most of her time chasing after her dog, Jax.


    Kavya Parthiban, Social Justice/Resistance Co-Chair

    Kavya is a 2L at UCLA Law and part of the Epstein Public Interest and Critical Race Studies Program. She worked with young people and survivors of intimate partner violence in the past and homes to continue working with youth and families post-law-school. She graduated from UC Berkeley and majored in Public Health.


    Jay Parepally, 1L Representative

    Jay is a first-year student at UCLA School of Law from Pittsburgh, PA. He graduated magna cum laude from UC San Diego with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a minor in Business. Prior to law school, Jay worked for several years in healthcare consulting and finance in San Francisco. Jay is passionate about addressing the climate crisis and plans to specialize in Environmental Law.


    Talisha Faruk, 1L Representative

    Talisha is a first-year law student at UCLA School of Law, from Los Angeles, CA. She graduated from UC Berkeley with a B.A. in Legal Studies, and a minor in Global Poverty and Practice. Prior to law school, Talisha worked as an Immigration Paralegal at Berry Appleman & Leiden, LLP, worked in numerous capacities as a community volunteer and legal researcher at various domestic violence clinics located in San Francisco, CA and Dhaka, Bangladesh, and served as a member of Amnesty International's Digital Verification Corps Lab—all of which reinforced her passion for human rights law, public service, and community lawyering. Talisha is a David J. Epstein Public Interest Law and Policy Scholar, UCLA Law Fellow, 2020 California ChangeLawyers 1L Diversity Scholar, and a 2020 GJELL Scholarship Recipient.

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