Samvad is a Sanskrit word which is now a part of the vocabulary of most modern Indian languages. Its meanings include: speaking together, conversation, dialogue, colloquy; discussion and debate; communication of tidings; information, news; assent, agreement; concurrence; similarity, and correspondence.
The objects for which the Trust is established include education, relief of the poor, medical relief and advancement of any other charitable objects of general public utility not involving the carrying on of any activity for profit.
More specifically the Foundation hopes to make a meaningful contribution to the intellectual, literary, artistic, spiritual, and critical cultures of contemporary India and of the South Asian Diaspora. The Foundation is interested not only in India's many pasts, with their rich and diverse traditions of philosophy, science, arts and crafts, but also with its many and complex contemporaneities, with issues of modernity and development, civil society and governance. Finally, the Foundation is also concerned with India's interactions with other civilizations, the building of new world orders, and the whole range of human endeavours that are engaged in constructing alternative futures. The Foundation hopes to facilitate, encourage, and promote specific projects and proposals in some of these areas.
Samvad India Foundation came to be established rather suddenly, though the need for such an institution was felt for a long time.
A group of academics, mostly English professors working in and around Delhi, thought of starting a study group called the Delhi Forum on Criticism and Interpretation. After an initial meeting, it was felt that an independent institutional setup was necessary to support and organize an activity of this sort.
Almost simultaneously, the idea of instituting the Raja Rao Award for an outstanding contribution to the literature and culture of the South Asian Diaspora came up. Again, we felt that a proper, registered body, legally equipped to receive donations and raise money, would be required to administer such a prize year after year.
Besides these two immediate causes, some of us had felt a long-standing need for a non-profit organization that could help us realize our own aspirations for our society. We have all wanted to do something meaningful, however modest it might be, for the causes that we hold dear. We found that many of these objectives could be met if we started a trust.
We realize, however, that none of our aims can be achieved unless we have the support, cooperation, and good wishes of several people. We therefore solicit your help and advice. If any of our activities interest you or if you wish to initiate a project in any of our areas of interest, please do contact us.