The Gandhi-King Scholarly Exchange Initiative has been signed into law by US President Donald Trump which helps makes way for the establishment of an educational scheme between India and the US for students wishing to learn and study about the work of Martin Luther King Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi.
The law signed by Donald Trump authorises up to $1 million a year till 2025 for the new scholarly programme. The law was written by the American civil rights activist John Lewis, who recently died. It was also co-sponsored by the Ami Bera, an Indian-American Congressman.
The scholarly initiative also grants $2 million for the Gandhi-King Global Academy and $30 million to US- India Gandhi King Development Foundation for the fiscal year 2021.
The United States Agency for International Development will be funded by the new law in order to establish a new body called the US-India development foundation which shall be responsible for pushing the private sector in India to address developmental priorities in India.
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If the private sector in India agrees to match the contributions of the US government, the developmental foundation would be granted $15 million for three years starting 2022. The estimated bill would cost $51 million over five years, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
The congressional visit to India in 2009 on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Dr Kings's pilgrimage to India was led by the late Congressman John Lewis.
In order to help young students apply the philosophies of Dr King Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi to the new policy challenges and conflict resolution mechanisms, Congressman Lewis created the Gandhi-King Exchange Act.
The act aimed to establish an educational forum between India and the US on an annual basis, focusing on the ideologies of Gandhi and Dr King Jr.