NEW YORK:  An Indian NGO has raised more than $4 million for providing quality education to underprivileged children in India, it was announced at an annual US-India NGO event in New York.

'Pratham' raised over US $3.8 million and another $260,000 for its award-winning education programmes.

Established in the slums of Mumbai in 1995, Pratham is one of India's largest non-governmental education organisations, having affected the lives of more than 50 million underprivileged children in the past two decades, a statement said.

"I had always dreamed of becoming a successful and independent woman. The Pratham course gave me something far greater than the skills to get a job at a fancy hotel. Pratham gave me the motivation and self-confidence to keep moving ahead," said Mangala Mehar, one of the beneficiaries of the organisation's educational programmes.

In her speech, CEO of Pratham Rukmini Banerji praised the significant support the organisation has received from Google and a family-based trust to experiment with digital learning and determine the optimum solution for educating India's 100 million children who are functionally illiterate.

The keynote speech at the Chicago fundraiser on September 21 was delivered by Genpact President and CEO N V "Tiger" Tyagarajan, who stressed on the importance of educating girls.

"It's my firm belief that when you educate girls and women in society, the society changes. Women have this tremendous power of actually changing the sociocultural fabric of countries," Mr Tyagarajan said.