Chandran Gramin Vikas Sansthan (CGVS) (Chandran Rural Development Society)
Gandhi College is sponsored and supported by a non-governmental organization (NGO) in India called Chandran Gramin Vikas Sansthan (CGVS), founded by the Shukla family. An English translation of Gramin is Rural, Vikas is Development, and Sansthan is Society. Thus, the name Chandran Gramin Vikas Sansthan translates as Chandran Rural Development Society. Out of affection for Anne and J. Shukla’s son, Chandran, Shukla’s brothers named the society after Chandran when he was eight years old in 1989. NGOs, also called “Societies” in India are like 501(c)(3) charitable organizations in the US. There are strict rules about their activities, especially if they receive financial support from foreign organizations. CGVS is formally registered with the Registrar of Societies under India’s Societies Registration Act of 1860. CGVS has the approval of the Indian tax authorities as a tax-exempt organization as per 80G of Income Tax Act (1961) of India. CGVS is also registered with the Home Ministry of India under the Foreign Currency Regulation Act (FCRA) which is a requirement to be eligible to receive donations from foreign organizations. CGVS submits a detailed account of all funds received from abroad each quarter, and how the funds were utilized. At the end of each fiscal year (1 April – 30 March in India) CGVS submits an audited statement of incomes and expenses. The President of CGVS is Dr. R.G. Upadhyay, a former Rector of Gandhi College, and a respected member of the community. The previous President was Professor Avinash Pandey, a former Vice Chancellor of an Indian university. The “Chief Functionary” (something like an executive director in the US) of CGVS is Mr. Shriram Shukla who is responsible for ensuring that the activities of the society are in accordance with the government rules in India. Previously, Shriram Shukla, had a green card and lived in the US. He made an extraordinary and commendable decision to return back to India and live in the village to promote rural development and the education and empowerment of women. According to the government rules in India, the Chief Functionary of the society cannot receive any salary or honorarium. CGVS strictly adheres to this requirement. All financial needs of the Chief Functionary (Shriram Shukla) are met from the personal funds of the Shukla family.
Chandran J. Shukla: Chandran was born on 22 April 1981 in Maryland, USA. He went to Garrett Park Elementary School, Walter Johnson High School, University of Utah, and University of Maryland. He was a child prodigy, and a brilliant innovator. While in high school, where he was an honor roll student, he taught himself several computer languages, built his own computers, repaired and modified his cars. His hobbies included rocket launching, photography, poker, travels to Italy, and racing. He successfully and proudly completed the US Marines boot camp, and after graduation from the University of Maryland he was preparing himself to be a jet fighter pilot and an officer in the US Marine Corp. He was serious, contemplative and reserved with his parents and relatives, and a jocular and fun-loving companion with his bar-hopping friends from college and motor bike group.
Chandran died suddenly on 14 March 2004 when he lost control of his motorcycle while he and his friends were riding their sports motorbikes in the winding mountain roads of the Shenandoah National Park in the Rappahannock County of the state of Virginia, about two hours away from his home in Rockville, Maryland.
Friends of Chandran and his sister and his parents have made generous donations to establish a scholarship in his name in the Gandhi College. Parents of Chandran and Dr. Kenneth A. Mooney from Reston, Virginia USA have made generous contributions to build a community hall named CHANDRAN MEMORIAL HALL to help children of village Mirdha and the surrounding villages.