Army signs MoU with Indrani Balan Foundation
Srinagar: Army on Tuesday signed an MoU with Indrani Balan Foundation for financial sustainability of five schools run by it in Kashmir which will entail a support of over three crore rupees per year for the next five years, and help ramp up the infrastructure and run the educational institutions better.
This is the second MoU between the Army’s 15 Corps or the Chinar Corps with Indrani Balan Foundation after the first one last year.
The MoU was signed for financial sustainability of additional four Army Goodwill Schools (AGSs) at Baraub, Dawar, Balapur and Behibagh in Kupwara, Shopian and Kulgam districts and the Army Goodwill Public School (AGPS) in Pahalgam area of south Kashmir’s Anantnag district.
The event was presided over by GoC Chinar Corps, Lt Gen DP Pandey, along with Punit Balan and Jahanvi Dhariwal of Indrani Balan Foundation.
Speaking on the occasion, GoC Chinar Corps said Indrani Balan Foundation, a welfare foundation, is active in a variety of philanthropic work across India. The foundation under Punit Balan has vast experience of social work in fields of education, health and sports, which will contribute immensely in improving quality of education as well as self-sustainability of these schools in future.
Last year, Chinar Corps had signed a similar MoU with Indrani Balan Foundation for financial sustainability of five AGSs of Uri, Wayne, Trehgam and Hajinan in Baramulla and Kupwara Districts for five years.
In addition, the Foundation had built a new infrastructure for Pariwar School Society for Specially-abled children of Baramulla.
This year, the MoU focuses on the four Army Goodwill Schools (AGSs) and Army Goodwill Public School (AGPS) and will entail financial support of Rs 3,28,00,000 per year for the next five years, he said.
The Chinar Corps currently runs 28 Army Goodwill Schools in Kashmir, which educates more than 10,000 students each year. Over one lakh students have passed out from these institutions. This initiative of Indrani Balan Foundation will be a great example for other corporates to come forward and contribute in building prosperous Kashmir, the GoC said.
Lt Gen Pandey said the shared vision of the future is the guiding force to rebuild a progressive Kashmir.
He complimented Balan for his vision, foresight and initiative to invest in nation building as a social responsibility.
This will release valuable funds which we are investing from the Army in these schools for much more activities which can reach out to the larger population of Kashmir and youth. This will also enable us to run our schools better in terms of faculty, teaching aids and other aspects, Lt Gen Pandey said.
Post the signing of the MoU, a short movie, ‘Mauj Kasheer’ was screened. The movie has been conceptualised, written and directed by a freelance journalist Suhail Khan.
Through the cinematic work, the film highlights the changing mindset of citizens, specially the women, who are against their wards joining the terrorist ranks. The mothers of Kashmir crave for their children to have a successful and safe future, the GoC said.
Lt Gen Pandey said his focus has been to ensure that the cycle of violence in Kashmir is curbed and stalled.
On one parameter we are looking at kinetic operations of neutralising terrorists. But, the most important pillar was to ensure to educate the society on the scourge of terrorism in which our young men don’t pick up weapons and join the terrorist ranks, the GoC said.
Punit Balan of Indrani Balan Foundation said they intend to add five schools from Kashmir every year for financial sustainability.
Last year, we had schools mostly from north Kashmir, but this year, at least three are from south Kashmir. We will be continuing to serve and build a better nation, Balan said.