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NRI environmentalist passes away

Bishan Singh, winner of Malaysia's first Consumer Advocate Award, is the recipient of several honours for his contribution to development.

india Updated: Nov 30, 2006 19:16 IST

Malaysian Indian social and environmental activist Bishan Singh, who was the winner of Malaysia's first Consumer Advocate Award, has passed away. He was 62.

A former president of the Federation of Malaysian Consumers Association, Singh died Wednesday at the Tengku Ampuan Afzan Hospital in Kuantan, the capital of the state of Pahang, after a short bout of illness.

Doctors listed his death as due to "pulmonary embolism" or the blockage of an artery in the lungs, according to reports. He had been admitted to the hospital a week ago.

Born in Nibong Tebal in the state of Penang, Singh did his masters degree in development management from the Asian Institute of Management in Manila.

He served as president of the Sustainable Development Network, board member of the Pesticide Action Network, Asia Pacific, and adviser to the Women Development Initiative of Malaysia.

Singh was also the president of the Pahang Consumer Association and chaired the education committee of the International Organisation of Consumers Union besides being a local councillor in Kuantan.

He had offered his services in consultancy for more than 20 years in 22 countries.

Singh was also presented the Langkawi Award in recognition of his outstanding services in the field of environment.

This year, he was named as one of the five Amazing Malaysians by DiGi Telecommunications.

"The last time I spoke to him was yesterday (Tuesday) and even though he was sick, he still talked about community work," his daughter, Sunitha, told the Bernama news agency.

FOMCA secretary-general Muhammad Sha'ani Abdullah described Singh's death as a "great loss to the nation and NGO community", according to the Malaysia Star.

Singh was cremated at the Jalan Bukit Ubi crematorium in Kuantan Thursday.

He leaves behind his wife, a daughter and a son.