Resolution adopted by the SAF-Bangladesh family at a condolence meeting in memory of Ambassador Madanjeet Singh

News Dhaka, Bangladesh - 9th January 2013

SAF–Bangladesh learnt with deep sorrow of the passing away of UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Madanjeet Singh, the founding Father of the South Asia Foundation (SAF). Ambassador Madanjeet Singh was uniquely gifted, which enabled him to make significant and creative contributions during his eventful life in different capacities, as a fighter for freedom, as a talented artist, as a successful diplomat, an author and as a philanthropist. He was committed to strengthen bonds of friendships and understanding among the peoples of South Asia, with the ultimate vision of realizing a South Asian Union. The establishment of SAF Foundation with national chapters of SAF in each of the SAARC countries was in pursuance of that commitment, as indeed was the establishment of UNESCO-Madanjeet Singh Institutions of Excellence in the SAARC countries, with scholarships to South Asian students to avail of opportunities to study at these institutions. The UNESCO Madanjeet Singh Prize for Tolerance and Non-violence was endowed in 1995 by Ambassador Madanjeet Singh and this prize was awarded to recipients ranging from the first in 1996 to the Woman’s Association of Rwanda, to Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi in 2002, and in 2011, to Anarkali Honaryar an Afghan woman human rights activist, who became the first non-Muslim (Sikh) member in the Afghan National Assembly. The depth of his concern for women’s education and empowerment was reflected in the donation of one million US Dollars to UNESCO in the wake of the recent attack on the Pakistani schoolgirl, Malala Yousafzai.

The passing away of Ambassador Madanjeet Singh is deeply felt by every member of the SAF-Bangladesh family. His life and work, however, will remain a source of continuing inspiration, which will sustain dedication to those goals by all those who are actively involved with SAF-Bangladesh, including scholarship recipients. SAF-Bangladesh will continue to strive actively to ensure that the legacy left behind by Ambassador Madanjeet Singh is actively continued at all levels in order to achieve the ideals he exemplified by his thoughts and actions, and by which he lived and acted throughout his life.