A US-based Sikh body has raised USD 3,30,000 to fund scholarships for bright but poor students to acquire higher education in Punjab.
Sikh Human Development Foundation (SHDF) organised a fund raising programme which was attended by Sikh-Americans from across the US. The chief guest of the event, Surender Singh Kandhari, a Dubai-based business tycoon, announced a donation of USD 1,00,000.
"Education is the most important treasure that any young man can possess and we are privileged to be in a position to help those in need in Punjab. It is our duty to do so. Good education helps in breaking the cycle of poverty. Giving is a virtue and it is a blessing that we are being asked to give," he said.
"This is also the largest donation ever received by the diaspora community for higher education for students in Punjab. In Indian rupees, this is a little over two crores.
And this certainly will have a significant impact on the future of Punjab," said Dr Rajwant Singh, outreach director of the Foundation.
The foundation has so far provided 3,418 scholarships, including 537 for the current academic year.
"More than 1,100 of these children have already graduated and become doctors, engineers, scientists, computer, experts and the like. Many are working in companies like IBM, Microsoft, Infosys, Indian Space Center and other good companies," said foundation's chairman Gajinder Singh Ahuja.