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India Approves $93m for Afghan Scholarships

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Kabul – The Indian cabinet on Saturday approved Rs492.55 crore ($93.5 million) to fund enhanced scholarships for Afghan students, the government in New Delhi said. “Scholarships for Afghan students in various universities in India will significantly contribute to the human resource development of Afghanistan,” the Indian Education Bureau said.

Afghan students’ skills would contribute toward the development of their country, the bureau hoped in a statement.  The scholarship scheme will be implemented by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations till 2020-21. Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh announced the enhancement of scholarships during his visit to Afghanistan in May 2011.

Abdul Azim Noorbakhsh, the higher ministry spokesman, welcomed the Indian government’s decision. He acknowledged India offered Afghan students the largest number of scholarships. He said of the 10,000 Afghans currently doing doctorates, masters and bachelor degrees abroad, 5,000 are studying in India. The government in Kabul had doubled funds for the Afghans studying abroad from $5 million next year. In 2012, 150 students were sent to India, but this year the number of Afghans in Indian universities will reach 400. (PAN)

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