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Teacher trust for needy students

Balurghat, May 31: Seventy four-year-old Sarada Nanda Das left for a tour of the country, 10 days before the trust he had set up with Rs 81 lakh for needy and meritorious students was announced.

A retired teacher and a bachelor, Das had accumulated part of the money from fees paid by students he tutored privately. The rest are his retirement benefits, which he got from Khadimpur High School where he worked.

In order to keep his plans a closely guarded secret, Das along with the other members of the trust board travelled to Raiganj on February 18 to complete the legal formalities.

“I was under strict instructions not to tell anyone about the trust till he left the district for a tour of India. Now I am making this announcement so that needy and bright students get to know about Daridra Medhabi Chhatra Sahajya Tahabil,” said Madan Mohan Moitra, the headmaster of Naresh Chandra High School in town and Das’s most favourite former student, today. Das left town on May 20.

“He said he planned to tour the entire country including the Andaman Islands. He even returned a mobile phone that I had presented to him but promised to call me from time to time to find out how the trust was doing,” Moitra said.

The other members of the board are the head teachers of Khadimpur High School, Khadimpur Girls’ High School, the district inspector of secondary schools, the principals of Balurghat College and Balurghat Girls’ College, chartered accountant Pradip Pal and another former student Sachindranath Saha.

Elder brother Biswanath, who is now close to 80 years said Das was always an introvert. “We knew that he had saved a lot of money and would put it to some good use, but we had never guessed how,” Biswanath said.

Moitra said 10 undergraduate students of the two colleges here would get a scholarship of Rs 600 a month. Ten university students will get Rs 800 a month and five medical students Rs 1,000. “We are going to advertise about the trust in newspapers so that students in need of scholarships can contact us,” said Moitra.

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