Yunus Inaugurates Ujjivan Small Finance Bank in India, Delivers Keynote Speech at Indian Institute of Science

Press Release (08 February, 2017)

Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus inaugurates the Ujjivan Small Finance Bank in India, one of the ten Microfinance banks licensed by the central bank of india for the first time,  in Bengaluru, India on February 6, 2017. PC: Yunus Centre

Nobel Laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus was the  Chief Guest at the grand launch of  Ujjivan Small Finance Bank (Ujjivan SFB) in Bengaluru, India on February 6, 2017. This new bank, which launched its five initial branches, aims to reach out to the larger unserved and underserved populace and provide them with easy-to-use and access banking services. Ujjivan Financial Services Ltd, one of the leading microfinance companies in India, began its journey in 2005 with support from Grameen Trust. Ujjivan has the largest pan-India presence of any microfinance company with through 469 branches with 44% year-on-year jump in gross loan book to Rs 6,588 crore at the end of December, last year. It has 3.6 million active small borrowers in 24 states. Ujjivan SFB is one of the first ten Microfinance banks licensed by the central bank of India. Professor Yunus had long been advocating for banking licences to MFIs in India which have established good record of performance. Central Bank of India has recently created a new category of bank following his suggestions. Ujjivan is one of the first MFIs which received the license.

Rejoinder to the Statement made by Honorable Prime Minister against Professor Muhammad Yunus on the Floor with of the Parliament

Press Release (28 January, 2017)

Honorable Prime Minister during a speech in Parliament made a number of incorrect and untrue statements about Professor Muhammad Yunus on the floor of the parliament on 25 January, 2017.

Many of these accusations have been made before and Yunus Centre has responded every time. Most of these allegations were made over and over again since 2011. They have been thoroughly responded to on each occasion. All national newspapers printed these responses devoting exclusive full pages in August, 2012. Please see more at https://goo.gl/v6brng. We are sorry that we have to repeat our responses once again. We are again laying out the facts against every accusation made by Honorable Prime Minister.

Honorable Prime Minister claims: Yunus has lots of money but does not pay tax. He sues taxmen not to pay tax. He does not pay taxes on the huge amount he keeps in fixed deposits. We don't know the sources of his income. Where does all the big money come from?

Our Response:  The allegation of avoiding paying taxes is completely false. Professor Yunus always pays his taxes in full and without fail. He pays substantial amounts in taxes every year. Honorable Prime Minister has given false information to the nation from the floor of the Parliament. Professor Yunus never tried to avoid due taxes by making excuses. His tax files have been investigated repeatedly in order to find fault with them but every time it has come out clean.  According to newspaper reports all banks in the country were asked last month to give his and his wife's financial dealings with them. Nothing new came out of these bank reports either.

Rejoinder to Honorable Prime Minister's Allegation against Professor Muhammad Yunus regarding Rampal Coal Plant Issue at World Economic Forum

Several local newspapers and other media outlets have carried comments allegedly made by Honorable Prime Minister on 21 January 2017 about the issue of Rampal Coal Plant being raised at the World Economic Forum. According to the media reports, Honorable Prime Minister said, “Yunus and company are responsible for bringing the Rampal issue to World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos by spending money." Several papers report that she has alleged that questions raised by former US Vice President Al Gore during a panel on the environment in which Hon Prime Minister also participated, were instigated by Professor Yunus.

We are deeply shocked and saddened by these alleged statements by Honorable Prime Minister especially implicating that someone of  Mr Gore's stature, a former Vice President of the United States, could be "bought" to make such comments.

The claim that Professor Yunus paid money to WEF to make this a topic of discussion is equally false and outrageous. Such a claim and allegation should be supported with concrete evidence when it is coming from a high office such as that of the Honorable PM against a distinguished citizen of Bangladesh, a distinguished citizen of another country, and a reputed global institution like WEF.

We strongly protest these false and baseless allegations against Professor Yunus.

Yunus and IOC President Discuss on Adding Social Dimension to Sports World

Yunus Centre Press Release (23 January, 2017)


The President of International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach  presents a specially autographed Olympic torch from Rio Olympics 2016 to Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus  on January 23, 2017 as a token of thanks for his participation as a torch-bearer in the Rio Olympics last year.

Davos, January 23.

In his final day in Davos, Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus was invited to a lunch  by President of International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach to discuss further about collaboration between Yunus Centre and IOC  to mainstream social business within IOC especially focused on athletes particularly retired athletes through sports clubs, sports federations and National Olympic Committees. Mr Bach also invited Yunus as his special guest to the opening of the Winter Olympic Games in Korea in February 2018.  He presented an Olympic torch from Rio Olympics of 2016 to Yunus specially autographed by him by way of thanks for Yunus's participation as a torch-bearer in  the Rio Olympics. It may be recalled that during Rio Olympics Yunus addressed all the members of the IOC as the keynote speaker at their annual meeting in Rio in July 2016. He was invited to attend the Olympic Games in Rio as a special guest of the IOC President.

YUNUS MEETS NEW UN SECRETARY GENERAL ANTONIO GUTERRES

Press Release

Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus is exchanging greetings with the new UN Secretary General, Mr Antonio Guterres during the meeting of the UN SDG Advocates in Davos on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum. Photo: Yunus Centre

Davos,  January 22.

Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus was invited to a specially organised  meeting of the UN SDG Advocates in Davos on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum to meet the new UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

The meeting was attended by the SDG Advocates who were present at the WEF in Davos. They included Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway, Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever and Ambassador Dho of Korea and Professor Yunus. The Secretary General sought the Advocates advice on the ways in which the  Advocates can promote the goals to help the UN achieve the SDGs by 2030. He wanted their advice on how he as the UN Secretary General can facilitate their work. 

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