Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Education Loans to Dalit Students of Punjab
I have seen today (July 7) a news item in the Tribune that the Punjab Schedule Caste Land Development and Finance Corporation has given a loan to a dalit young girl Neerja to pursue her higher studies in a University in New Zealand. It is a welcome development. I think vide publicity should be given to these facilities so that more and more dalit students could benefit and get educated under these schemes. It will lead to their emancipation and empowerment a much faster pace. The Corporation raised the limit of the loans from Rs.40,000/- to Rs. 5,00,000/- recently. Under these arrangements, meritorious dalit students pursuing Medical, Engineering, MBA, MCA and Ph.D. programmes in India or abroad are eligible to avail of the loan facilities upto Rs. 5,00,000/- 0n 8% annual rate of interest. I have also recently noted that an other outfit named ' Ambedkarite International Coordination Society ' has also helped financially yet another young dalit girl Pooja Mattu by underwriting expenses of her higher studies. I wish some more institutions both in public and private sector, particularly the banks and educational institutions take cue and join hands in this regard. It would amount to an affirmative action to further integrate and empower the weeker sections of the society.
During my last visit to India in January this year, I had a chance meeting with Shri Pawan Kumar Tinu, Chairman of the Punjab Schedule Caste Land Development and Finance Corporation at the marriage of my niece Mamta in Jalandhar. He mentioned about his efforts to enhance the limit of educational loans. Tinu should be supported and congratulated for the good work he has done. I personally found Tinu a dynamic young and educated political and social leader of the dalit community. I think good people shall be recognised and commended and their work appreciated.