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Najib gives scholarships for Indian students, praises SMC

 | March 18, 2012

Prime Minister Najib says government would provide full scholarships for top 100 Indian students who achieved first class degree.

UPDATED

PETALING JAYA: Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak was in high praises of the Sri Murugan Centre over the key role played by the education centre in educating thousands of Indian students.

Minutes after launching the 30th  anniversary celebrations of Sri Murugan Centre (SMC) here, Najib tweeted to show his appreciation to the centre.

“They have done much for the Indian community,” he tweeted.

Earlier in his speech, Najib said the government would provide full scholarships for top 100 Indian students who achieved first class degree.

They will be provided the financial aid to pursue education at local public universities, he said.

“These top students can now pursue post-graduate degrees at public universities should they decide to do so,” he added.

The prime minister said that the scholarship award showed the government’s commitment to education for Malaysian Indians.

He said the scholarships announcement was to fulfill the promises he made at the launching of the 1Malaysia Indian Student Movement (1MISM) last year.

“In 2011, I announced at the launch of 1MISM that more opportunities for funding will be given to first class honours Indian undergraduates at public universities whereby they can pursue their Masters and PhDs at IPTAs.

He also repeated his earlier assurance that 1,000 places for matriculation will be offered to Indian students who have excelled in the 2011 SPM examinations. This offer will kickstart from the 2012/2013 intake.

At a press conference afterwards, the prime minister also announced that a new Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan Tamil (SJKT) made up of two four-storey classroom blocks would be built in Taman PJS 1 here.

Najib said the school would be named SJKT Tan Sri V Manikavasagam in appreciation of the contributions the late former president of MIC in advancing the Indian community in the country.

“Construction will begin this year itself,” he added.

The prime minister’s scholarships announcement for the top 100 Indian students was received well by more than 6,000 students, parents and teachers who attended the SMC celebrations today.

The Sri Murugan Centre has served a crucial role in helping more than 23,000 students from the low and middle income groups become graduates.

Dedicated to teaching

Speaking to FMT last week, SMC founder M Thambirajah said that the centre was committed to its three main principals – all are created equal, all have been bestowed with the same intelligence and faith in religion is crucial to success in education.

“All children are not born stupid. All are born equal and SMC really cares for our children. We invited the PM to recognise the achievement of our children over the years and reaffirm our commitment towards nation building,” he added.

Thambirajah said the centre was founded on Sept 24, 1982 by him and a group of 42 students of the Tamil Language Society and lecturers of Universiti Malaya.

He recalled that he initiated the centre in that year after only 120 students qualified for the Arts faculty of UM despite 160 places having been allocated for Indian students.

“This resulted in under qualified students being given places to fullfil the quota requirement at that time,” he said.

Thambirajah said SMC and its volunteers were dedicated to teaching and guiding its students to discover their full potential.

“For the last 30 years, we have come a long way in narrowing the gap between those who are well educated and not educated.

[main photo from SMC website]


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