Dr. Bhabendranath Saikia's Aarohan Needs Your Help

Please see the following news from today's Assam Tribune. The trust still needs Rs 30 Lakhs (Approx $ 65,000) to equip the building with minimum facilities so that it can be opened in Feb 2004. We had started a fundraising drive around 5 months ago to collect money for this initiative. Several people, from all sections and all organisations of our community, has responded and we've collected around $ 2150 so far from people from assam residing in the U.S. Additionally, Mr. Vavani Sarma has pledged to donate a computer. AFNA has commited an additional $ 500 from its general fund.

Our original target was for $ 5000. Please help us in reaching that target and contribute generously for this project. This was a dream project of Late Dr. Bhabendranath Saikia. He had given so much for Assam, let us collectively help to make his dream project a success.

Please make your check payable to AFNA or IFAA or UOANA, mark it for "Aarohan", and mail it to:
44963 Lemont Road, Canton, MI 48187.

AFNA is a non-profit organisation registered under section 501c(3) in the I.R.S. Your contributions thru AFNA maybe tax-deductible in the U.S. For more information about AFNA please visit www.geocities.com/assamfoundation. You can also "DONATE ONLINE" from this website via secured paypal services.

You don't have to be a member of AFNA to contribute towards this fund or to take tax advantages for your donations to AFNA. If you want to become a member of AFNA and take active part in our charitable activities please send a check for an additional $ 25.

Krishanu Kaushik
President, AFNA

--------------- News from Assam Tribune, 08/25/03---------------------

Dr Saikia’s dream project Arohan likely to be opened in Feb 2004
By A Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, Aug 24 - Arohan, the dream project of Dr Bhabendra Nath Saikia in the form of a four-storey multi-purpose children’s complex which is probably the only thing that the maestro left unfinished in his lifetime, is expected to be formally inaugurated on February 20 next year, synchronizing with his 73rd birthday. Most of the construction work of the 16,000-sq ft building situated near Dr Saikia’s residence at Basisthapur No-2 at Beltola have been completed and a sum of Rs 33.3 lakh spent so far.

Revealing this at a news conference today, members of the Bhabendra Nath Saikia Children’s Welfare Trust said in order to open the complex as per schedule and equip it with the minimum facilities, another amount of Rs 30 lakh was needed, and appealed to the general public and organisations and corporate houses to contribute to the noble cause. “To complete the project in all aspects we need Rs 90 lakh more, but Rs 30 lakh is the immediate need to open it on February 20,” Gautom Sharma, Trust member along with Dr Hemen Barman, Krishna Roy and Preeti Saikia, wife of Dr Saikia, said.

The Trust has so far collected Rs 34 lakh - Rs 10 lakh from Dr Saikia’s family, Rs 10 lakh from MPs’ LAD Fund and the rest from various organisations, corporate houses and individual donors. “We received donations ranging from Rs 10 to Rs 1 lakh from individual donors and if the people extend the same kind of support, there is no way why the project cannot be completed on time,” Sharma said and requested interested persons/organisations to contribute their donations to SBI (Dispur branch) account no. 01000050781 in favour of Dr Bhabendra Nath Saikia Children’s Welfare Trust.

Asserting that the Trust was committed to carry forward the legacy of Dr Saikia who had done so much for the State and its people, Preeti Saikia said Arohan was just the first step towards achieving that end. “He firmly believed that the future of the society were the children and unless their all-round development is ensured, progress will continue to remain a distant dream,” she said. Sangeeta Saikia, Dr Saikia’s daughter, explained various features of the children’s project through slides. The family of Dr Saikia has also decided to donate all the royalty and remuneration due from different sources like TV serials made on the basis of his short stories, besides those made by himself, as also from his films and various writings etc., to the Trust, she said.

Meanwhile, the Trust has formed a committee with State Chief Secretary Jyotiprasad Rajkhowa as president and Kamrup (Metropolitan) Deputy Commissioner AK Absar Hazarika as convener to monitor and supervise construction of the project till its completion. The scheme of the children’s complex, a brainchild of Dr Saikia, was finalized in 2000 and the Trust was officially set up on February 12, 2001. The foundation of the project was laid on a plot of land belonging to Dr Saikia himself to which the Government added another 50 sq metre land. Architect Arijit Choudhury has prepared the design of the building.

The complex which will cater to the needs of the children in their pursuit of excellence in diverse fields, will be equipped with state-of -the -art facilities including Internet. While the ground floor will provide open space with provision for a playground as well as recreational and creative activities for children from three to 10 years of age, the first floor will have a reception area, the Trust offices, a health information centre, facilities for music and dance classes for children and a residential unit to be used for the benefit of the Trust. The second floor will contain a library of child literature, a computer station with Internet facilities, a hobby centre, facilities for training children in arts and crafts, a personal museum of Dr Saikia and a residential unit for the Trust. A multipurpose auditorium with 250 seats, a reception area and conference halls with modern audio-visual and teleconferencing facilities will be there in the third floor.