3,000 students begin Punjabi classes at 47 centres in Malaysia

| Ipoh, Malaysia  | 10 Jan 2016 | Asia Samachar |
Opening day of PEC at Khalsa Land in Kuala Kubu Bharu, Selangor, last year. This year, some 3,000 will be attending the 47 PECs nationwide - PHOTO/ASIA SAMACHAR
Opening day of PEC at Khalsa Land in Kuala Kubu Bharu, Selangor, last year. This year, some 3,000 will be attending the 47 PECs nationwide – PHOTO/ASIA SAMACHAR

Some 3,000 students are expected to attend the 47 Punjabi Education Centers (PECs) nationwide run by a unit of the Khalsa Diwan Malaysia (KDM) which began classes this week.

A majority of them are starting classes today. A handful may have started yesterday or may start tomorrow depending on the weekend holiday in the respective states. The teaching dates are published in the KDM annual calendar.

In a statement, KDM president Santokh Singh Randhawa said about 250 teachers had their meetings at their respective PECs last week and are all geared to serve the Quam in this field.

“With the help of the community, we have progressed quite significantly. When we first started, we were using the Singapore Punjabi Education Foundation textbooks. Today, the Diwan has produced nine text books of its own viz Kindergarten 1 and 2, Primary 1 to 6 and Secondary 1 book. Efforts are being made to complete the remaining text books this year,” he said in the statement emailed to Asia Samachar.

SEE ALSO: 60 teachers work on Punjabi lesson plans

This is the 16th year since KDM started the project in 2001.

“Teachers are being consistently trained and up-graded in the teaching and learning process of the language (maa boli),” he said in the statement.

“Some monetary aid is given to these PECs, depending on the grants by the Government. However in the past two years there had been no help from the Government. We are pleased to announce that some aid has been received from the Prime Ministers Department through SEDIC and therefore some aid will be forthcoming this year. Relevant circulars have been sent to the PECs.”

SEDIC is short for Socio-Economic Development of the Indian Community, a special unit formed under the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) to handle the special funding for Indian non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

On 4 Nov 2014, the government announced that four Sikh NGOs received a total of RM945,000 from the Federal funding for projects to improve the position of the bottom half of the Indian community in Malaysia. The Ipoh-headquartered KDM  received the lion’s share of RM600,000.

SEE ALSO: 4 Malaysian Sikh NGOs receive RM950,000 Federal funding

The schools are managed under KDM’s unit Punjabi Education Trust Malaysia (PETM) headed by Gurnam Singh Dhillon.

“With Waheguru’s blessings, we have a number of volunteers who are seen serving the PECs on the teaching days. New centers are opened up as requests come in.”

“I must say that for this project, we have received full support of the quam and with the blessing, we shall further advance,” he said in the statement.


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