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Jamia VC creates endowment fund in memory of his Abba’

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Postby Pankaj » Thu Dec 02, 2010 5:33 pm

There is nothing new about instituting an endowment fund for the underprivileged , but Jamia Millia's 'Abba endowment fund' (AEF) is different.

Not only is the fund being created from the salary of the incumbent vice-chancellor of Jamia Millia Isamia — Najeeb Jung — but it is dedicated to one Abdullah, who joined the Jung household as a help in 1938 and served three generations of the family before his death in 2006.

Unlike any other scholarships , AEF is not structured and its core philosophy is to offer a flexile support system. So far, it has helped four students who could not afford to study in any university.

Among the beneficiaries are class XI student Fatima Naaz, who lost her parents in the Bhagalpur riots and Mehtab Ali, human resource management student.

Professor Zubair Meenai of Jamia said: '' Abba is the brainchild of Professor Jung. The idea behind the fund is to benefit those students who don't come under the ambit of other scholarships, which are structured . So, we decided to create something which is flexible and subjective as well. The fund is not yet institutionalized and the quantum of support has not yet been decided. It will vary according to the needs of the students selected for the scholarship.''

Another factor which makes the fund unique is the name. Meenai said the name suggested initially was vicechancellor's endowment fund. "But our VC wanted to dedicate this to a father figure, whom he used to address as 'Abba' since the time he was born," said Meenai.

Abdullah joined the Jung family in 1938 for two-and-half anas per month to look after the Jung brothers. But since 1947, Abdullah and his family did not take any salary from the Jungs and yet continued to serve them. All the keys to the safe used to be under Abdullah's supervision. Abdullah used to accompany young Najeeb to the play field and school and even taught him to ride a motorcycle. "I owed everything to this man. He was like a father figure to me," Jung said.
Pankaj Sharma
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