Dr. Sandeep PandeyMagsaysay Awardee
It is really courageous of Samina to have taken such a bold decision of working in the challenging state of UP in India. I have observed the determination in her persistent fight for right to education for underprivileged children in a state which is dominated by education mafias and corrupt politicians. She has a vision to build an inclusive education system that opens doors for children from all backgrounds. She has forged significant partnerships with government and started driving change from within. Her immense dedication and conviction towards her goal has helped her move mountains. Although she started as a loner, today organizations such as UNICEF and Central Square Foundation have been supporting her. She has huge potential and with the dynamism she works she is sure to go a long way to achieve her aim and a lot more.
Ashish DhawanFounder and Chairman, Central Square Foundation
Samina has traversed a difficult professional journey till now. She has been championing implementation of a policy in an environment which is extremely challenging, complex and full of uncertainties and set-backs. She is working on a provision in Right to Education Act which enables poor children to study in private schools. This policy has faced considerable bottlenecks in Uttar Pradesh- her operational base- from private school lobbies, politicians and bureaucrats. It has been inspiring to see how she has navigated all this for past 4-5 years and has now managed to implement this policy in partnership with the government.
Through her work, she has put education quite high on the political agenda of the Uttar Pradesh government. Currently she has also managed to inspire lot of other organisations to collaborate with her to further strengthen the implementation of this policy.
Partha Sarthi Sen SharmaEx-Secretary to Chief Minister, Government of Uttar Pradesh
Ms Samina Bano is clearly a person of high integrity, zeal and passion for social service. I have seen her working with unfailing enthusiasm and effectiveness, despite several obstacles and difficulties. I have also seen her build partnerships and work with various people and agencies and inspire various people to her cause. Her expertise, her education, empathy and above all her enthusiasm makes her a person of immense potential for future.
Zafaryab JilaniAdditional Advocate General, Uttar Pradesh
I would like to congratulate RightWalk Foundation on their persistent efforts in the entire RTE Case (CMS vs State of UP). Samina has played an integral role in helping us develop arguments which helped the state win a challenging case in single as well as double bench of the High Court. I am highly impressed with the perseverance and commitment shown by the RWF team and I wish them success in all their future endeavours.