Different Dialogues : In conversation with Mr. K. Kumar, Convener of Indian Community Welfare Committee – Dubai, UAE.

In conversation with Mr. K. Kumar, Convener of Indian Community Welfare Committee – Dubai, UAE.


Educational background: Electrical Engineering from Chennai, India.

Nothing can quite stop you to count the trophies and framed certificates of awards adorning the spaces of K. Kumar’s drawing room.  There are so many that you could easily lose the count!  As I sipped the best cup of south-Indian coffee (courtesy Brinda Kumar – soul-mate of K. Kumar), I was thinking with a conclusion that what the prized displays did to the identity for K. Kumar was to advocate the virtues of a man who was obviously a serious sports-minded athlete in his school and college.  Later in life, he matched the bar by distributing his commitments towards social-service activities.  ‘Work’ for which K. Kumar has an inherent liking gets broadly done in three ways: essentially he has developed the understanding on how he can offer his best to his family, his community and the company he works for.  He certainly belongs to the brand of men who seem at their best when they are giving back to society with their helpful acts.  To pay tribute to this belief, K. Kumar says, he saw his family members in India doing the same, ever since he can remember.  The other motto he worships is: maintain continuity.  For that, the proof of the pudding lies in the fact that K. Kumar has steadily been working for Dubai World (previously known as Dubai Port Services) since the last 37 years.


Ten years ago, K. Kumar realized the acute need to form in Dubai, an organization of a sort that could deal with the problems of blue-collared and other categories of Indian workers.  He tells me, the Indian population is the single largest expatriate community living in Dubai: with 50-60% blue-collared workers.  As the Convener of the Indian Community Welfare Committee, K. Kumar has enough on his plate to keep him strikingly busy after his office hours.  Applying fit methods, he utilizes regularly a chunk of his earned leave to tackle welfare matters.


Month by month, the Indian Consul General in Dubai assesses with the Indian Community Welfare Committee the sensitivities held by given instances – where and how they can contribute in some way to help the needy individuals.  Under the banner of ICWC, 77 members along with K. Kumar donate their time and efforts to their community.  K. Kumar supervises wisely – distributing forms of actions among his fellow-members in the ICWC. He states satisfactorily that the members of ICWC are matching comrades readily available to give him assistance.  They visit the Indian fellowmen in hospitals, labour camps; the odd cases that turn into a jail sentence are taken on the basis of providing counseling for them.  Indian women who become destitute under compelling circumstances are given shelter, food, comfort and a chance for rehabilitation.  In our conversation, Brinda tells me that K. Kumar is proficient in the Arabic language – both in reading and writing.  In these moments, I also grasp that Brinda herself has been actively employed with community events.  Apart from other contributions, for 5 years, Brinda coordinated the cultural programmes for the Indian Pavillion at the Global village, during the early years of the Dubai Festival.


It is interesting to mention, that it was by a sheer chance that Mr. K. Kumar happened to visit Dubai in the year of 1972; the halt planned for Dubai was for a mere week only.  How about reflecting that nothing is a coincidence!


Q 1. What has been the turning point of your life?
A.    Setting up of Indian Community Welfare Committee under the patronage of the Consulate General of India, Dubai. This has led to a structured organization dedicated towards community welfare. This has helped hundreds of less privileged fellow Indian expatriates living in Dubai and Northern Emirates. The solace and the sense of satisfaction one derives is amazing and can only be experienced and not explained.


Q 2. If you could go back in time, what would you want to do?
A.    Find time to spend quality time with my wife and two daughters. I have certainly missed out on that. We have hardly traveled together on holidays and I would like to catch up on that.


Q 3. What are your future dreams?
A.   It is a long wish-list beginning with: Renewal of the close ties the Indian community had with the Ruling Families of UAE. A scam-less India.  Self-imposed control on population of India.  Be proud to be an Indian and never let down your motherland.


This dialogue took place between Mr. K. Kumar and Geeta Chhabra in March 2011 in Dubai-UAE.