NEW DELHI: UAE-based Indian businessman and philanthropist donated Rs 2.25 crore to facilitate the release of 900 prisoners from Gulf jails. The 66-year-old Firoz Merchant’s effort came as a pre-Ramzan gesture.
“Prominent Dubai-based Indian businessman and philanthropist Firoz Merchant of Pure Gold has donated close to Rs 2.25 Crores (AED 1 million) to ensure the release of 900 prisoners from jails across the Arabian nation,” Merchant’s office said in a statement.
The owner of Pure Gold Jewellers has already been instrumental in obtaining the release of 900 prisoners across the UAE since the beginning of 2024, including 495 from Ajman, 170 from Fujairah, 121 from Dubai, 69 from Umm Al Quwain, and 28 from Ras Al Khaimah, through the Forgotten Society initiative, which was founded in 2008.
Further, Merchant has secured the release of 20,000 prisoners over the years.
Talking about the Forgotten Society initiative, Merchant said, “The Forgotten Society initiative is based on the premise that humanity transcends borders.”
“We work together to provide them with the possibility to reconcile with their family in their home country and society,” he added.
Appreciating Merchant’s efforts, Colonel Mohammed Yusuf Al-Matrooshi said, “So many thousands owe him a debt of gratitude and what makes it so impressive is the quiet and discreet manner in which he sets about doing so much good work and providing genuine hope to those who might be languishing behind bars because they cannot pay their fines.”
Merchant intends to secure the release of around 3,000 convicts by 2024.
(With inputs from agencies)


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