These Punjabi ladies want to make a difference

Two-year old EKTA Club plans to help to educate and change the life of women in Malaysia

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These bunch of Punjabi ladies – many of them professionals like lawyers, doctors, bankers and entrepreneurs in Malaysia – are trying to make a difference in the lives of others.

After doing voluntary work for the last two years or so, they came up with a plan to organise their maiden fund raising dinner. And they certainly knew how to put up a grand performance which included a fashion show.

Welcome to the fund raising dinner of two-year old EKTA Club of Kuala Lumpur and Selangor.

“The funds may help to change the life of a boy or a girl,” the club president Kuldip Kaur Gill told Asia Samachar at the sidelines of the event on Saturday (7 July 2018).

The well-attended dinner function of the non-government organisation (NGO) took place at a Punjabi restaurant in Kuala Lumpur. The mood was joyful, and the members mingling with a sense of gladness that they are making a difference.

“EKTA‘s slogan is ‘making a difference’ and we have many projects in the pipeline. We are also moving forward with dreams of establishing a formidable Punjabi woman’s organisation that not only makes an impression but one that quickly meanders towards and is able to be on the same platform as other more established Malaysian and international organisations,” Kuldip said in her welcoming speech.

Also present was Gurmeet Kaur, the wife of late legendary politician and lawyer Karpal singh and also mother of the first Sikh federal government minister Gobind Singh Deo.

The club, registered as an NGO, is made up of 50 lady members from various professions and homemakers. Its first annual general meeting (AGM) was held on 11 January 2017.

It provides a platform for its members to empower communities through four committees: the Medical Committee, the Legal Aid Committee, the Welfare Committee and the YDLL Committee. EKTA is already an active affiliate of the National Council of Women’s Organisation NCWO at the national level.

“I feel truly honoured to be the inaugural president of a club whose members include not only qualified women who have breached the glass ceiling in their own professions but also women of great compassion and integrity who have a strong desire to contribute towards the less fortunate in our community.

“Together we proudly call ourselves the Ektarians. This constellation of ladies are truly the heartbeat of the club. Every Ektarian is a beautiful star. It is also heart-warming to see the friendships that have blossomed within the club,” she said.

EKTA’s medical sub-committee is led by a former deputy director of University Hospital Harbans Kaur. It has organised medical talks at Petaling Jaya, High Street, Shah Alam and Ampang gurdwaras.

The legal sub-committee, led by lawyer and lecturer Dr Jashpal Kaur, has organised talks at gurdwaras at Mantin, Kajang and Shah Alam on topics like women’s rights, divorce and domestic violence.

“It is anticipated that the legal team will come out with a booklet on Women’s Rights in this country from a Sikh perspective in the near future. They have also been invited to set up a legal office within the Kajang gurdwara. Visiting the Punjabi female prisoners at the Kajang prison and helping members of the community to prepare wills at a nominal rate are some of the projects in the pipeline,” she said.

The Youth Development and Life Long Learning sub-committee is led by Dr Saran Kaur, a former vice chancellor of University Kebangsaan Malaysia, while its welfare sub-committee is headed by EKTA vice president Rani Gurmit.

Amarjit Kaur Gill was the organising chairperson for the dinner.

 

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Sikh women – know your rights (Asia Samachar, 17 April 2017)

 

[ASIA SAMACHAR is an online newspaper for Sikhs / Punjabis in Asia. How to reach us: Facebook message or WhatsApp +6017-335-1399. Our email: editor@asiasamachar.com. For obituary announcements, click here

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