Pakistan awards Jinnah Scholarship to 165 Lankan students
The Pakistan government through its High Commission in Sri Lanka
awarded educational scholarships worth Rs 4 million to 165 bright O-L
and A-L students under the Jinnah Scholarship Programme 2012.
The award ceremony was held at Bishop's College Auditorium yesterday
with Co-operatives and Internal Trade Minister Johnston Fernando as the
Chief Guest and Urban Development Senior Minister A H M Fowzie as the
Guest of Honour. Pakistan High Commissioner Seema Ilahi Baloch also
Ridmi Handapangoda who is visually impaired receives her
scholarship from Co-operatives and Internal Trade Minister
Johnston Fernando. Pakistan High Commissioner Seema
Ilahi Baloch is also in the picture.
The 165 successful candidates for the Jinnah Scholarship awards 2012
included Ridmi Handapangoda who obtained nine As at the O-Ls despite
being completely visually impaired. She has kept a record by securing
the first position in her class by defeating over 50 students in each
class from grades one to 10. Apart from achievements in studies, she had
won certificates for essay writing, poems and singing at school
Ridmi has learnt basics of computer handling and does her writing
using the special software called JOSE designed for visually impaired
The Jinnah Scholarships are awarded on the basis of a strict criteria
involving merit and need for financial assistance. Under the programme,
each successful student receives a stipend of Rs 24,000 as assistance
for one year to follow their studies. Baloch said Jinnah passionately
believed in the value of education and donated his entire property in
India to a Bombay School and hospital.
She said it was Jinnah who declared that "we have achieved Pakistan
without war and practically by moral and intellectual force and the
power of the pen".
"That is why we decided to name this noble venture, designed to help
young and deserving students who will be scholars, professionals,
administrators and leaders of Sri Lanka's tomorrow, as the Jinnah
Scholarship Awards," Baloch said. Minister Fernando praised the Pakistan
government for the assistance to Sri Lanka.
He said the Pakistan government's support for educational needs of
needy Sri Lankan students shows her commitment towards bilateral
co-operation between the two countries.
The students who received scholarships with the guests.
Fernando said Pakistan is a close friend of Sri Lanka and helped Sri
Lanka in times of crisis.
He said the scholarship programme has benefitted students from all
communities for the past seven years.
The 165 students received cash prizes and certificates from the Chief
Guest and the High Commissioner during the ceremony.
The Pakistan government has been awarding the Jinnah Educational
Scholarship since 2005. Nearly 1,000 students have benefitted from this