The Confederation of Alumni for National Law Universities (CAN Foundation) has granted scholarships to 45 undergraduate students of National Law Universities (NLUs) across the country as part of its Project Eklavya 2021.
The scholarships for this year, which were granted under various heads, amounted to ₹40 lakh.
Project Eklavya seeks to lift and impact deserving but underprivileged undergraduate students of NLUs, who are granted annual scholarships that fund their education.
CAN Foundation had in place a two-tier selection procedure, wherein applications for these scholarships had undergone strict scrutiny by selection committees comprising eminent legal professionals. The students were shortlisted by a carefully nominated Tier-1 Scrutiny Committee, after which the applications were verified and finalised by a three-member High-Powered Selection Committee.
The High-Powered Selection Committee was headed by former Chief Justice of the Jammu & Kashmir High Court Gita Mittal as the Chairperson and also consisted of Senior Advocates Dayan Krishnan and Siddharth Bhatnagar.
The Tier-1 Scrutiny Committee comprised eminent young faces of the legal fraternity having a minimum standing of 12-15 years at the Bar. It consisted of Advocates-on-Record Pragati Neekhra, Amalpushp Shroti, Divyakant Lahoti, Mrigank Prabhakar, Advocate Suhasini Sen and Partner at Advani & Co, Tariq Khan.
After carefully scrutinizing all the applications, the Tier-1 Committee shortlisted 45 candidates out of around 60 applications. It further categorised them under two categories to ascertain the quantum of financial assistance to be given to them.
The first category was the Excellence despite Extreme Hardships category, having scholars who have suffered gravely as a consequence of precarious financial positions. Such scholars had either lost parent(s) or had parent(s) undergoing serious medical treatments or financial hardships. The candidates had performed exceptionally well despite such impediments. 21 candidates were shortlisted under this category.
The next category was Excellence despite Hardships, which consists of scholars who have insufficient family income to sustain their education or are facing some other impediment in pursuit of their education. These are characterised by the existence of other dependents such as siblings, who also require support for their education. 24 candidates were shortlisted under this category.
These shortlisted candidates were further vetted by the esteemed High-Powered Selection Committee. The HPSC recommended that financial help be extended to all 45 candidates and that the Foundation may develop innovative ways to help these young law students navigate their legal careers.
Thus, as per the recommendations of the HPSC, 21 candidates under the ‘Excellence despite Extreme Hardships’ category have been awarded ₹1 Lakh each and 24 candidates under ‘Excellence despite Hardships’ category have been provided scholarship support of upto ₹75,000 each.
For the academic session 2020-21, 30 students were given scholarships amounting to around ₹25 lakh.
In the words of CAN Foundation CEO Siddharth R Gupta,
“Eklavya is one of the most expansive projects of the Foundation, through which we aim to touch the lives of hundreds of students nationwide and to enable them to continue chasing their dreams, unscathed by financial fetters. We seek to widen our national footprint even further, and aim to transform the lives of many more students through our work. We at CAN believe in rewarding aspiration and merit of students, thereby strengthening their zeal towards their aim.”
More details about Project Eklavya can be found on the official website of the Foundation – www.canfoundation.in.