Two Indians from Kerala conferred Sainthood at Vatican

Two Kerala-born Indian Catholics Father Kuriakose Elias Chavara and Sister Euphrasia have been canonised by Pope Francis at St Peter’s Square in Vatican.

Pope Francis pronounced them as saints at a special mass held at St Peter’s Square, Vatican. The ceremony included a Latin hymn and a recommendation by a representative of the Congregation for the Saints. Earler, in April this year, Pope had cleared their names for sainthood.

With these canonisation of sainthood, the centuries-old Syro Malabar Church, Kerala now has three Saints, the first being Sister Alphonsa, who was declared a saint in 2008 by the Vatican.

About Father Kuriakose Elias Chavara

  • Father Kuriakose Chavara lived in the 19th He was a visionary priest and social reformer whose contributions spread across education, media and social justice.
  • He fought for appointing Kerala priests as bishops instead of foreign missionaries and had founded the first Catholic religious congregation for men and women in the country.
  • As a social reformer, he believed that intellectual development and education of women was the first step towards overall social welfare.
  • He was first to start schools for f weaker sections and introduce the system called “A school along with every church”, which was successful in making free education available for everyone.
  • He died in on 3 January, 1871, aged 65.

About Sister Euphrasia

  • Sister Euphrasia led a more secluded life, devoted to prayers.
  • She was known as a ‘praying mother’ and a ‘saint among nuns’, who, according to followers, had several miracles to her credit.
  • She had been a member of the congregation Carmelites of Mother Carmel (CMC), founded by Chavara.
  • She died on Aug 29, 1952 at the age of 75 and is buried at Ollur, Thrissur.

To celebrate their sainthoods, prayers and masses were held at churches across Kerala. Christians constitute 23 percent of Kerala’s 33 million population and 50 percent of them are Catholics.

Two states, three UTs achieve 100% inclusion under PMJDY

Union Finance Ministry has announced that Goa and Kerala became the first states in the country to achieve 100 percent Financial Inclusion under Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY).

Union Finance Ministry also announced that three Union Territories (UTs) namely Chandigarh, Puducherry and Lakshadweep achieved 100 percent financial inclusion under PMJDY.

According to official data available till 5th November, 11.26 lakh bank accounts were opened in Kerala, followed by 77, 485 accounts in Goa, 1.36 lakh accounts in Chandigarh, 69819 accounts in Puducherry and 3588 accounts in Lakshadweep under the Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana (PMJDY).

Finance Ministry has declared States of Kerala and Goa, union territories of Chandigarh, Puducherry and Lakshadweep and three districts of Gujarat- Porbandar, Mehasana, Gandhinagar as 100 per cent saturated in terms of coverage of all households with at least one bank account.

According to Finance Ministry

  • PMJDY so far managed to bring over 5000 crore rupees into the formal banking system as account holders have started depositing cash. A large chunk of this money would have been kept at home in the absence of accounts, with little or no productive use.
  • According to the initial results, on an average about 80% of the households surveyed have now got at least one bank account.
  • As in the first week of November 2014, 7.24 crore accounts have been opened under PMJDY of which 4.29 crore in rural and 2.95 crore are in urban areas. RuPay Cards have been issued in case of 3.97 crore accounts.
  • At the time banks had been given a target of opening 7.5 crore accounts under the scheme.
  • Each of the accounts come with a debit card, 1 lakh rupees accidental insurance policy and 30000 rupees free medical insurance cover.

About Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana

On 28th August 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched the scheme with the goal of eradicating financial untouchability of the poor by opening at least one bank account for every family in the country in less than six months.

Kerala became first state with bank accounts for all families

Kerala Finance Minister KM Mani has announced that Kerala has become the first state in the country to have bank accounts for all families under Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna (PMJDY). This formal declaration was by minister at the State-Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC) meeting in Thiruvananthapuram.

Under the PMJDY, Kerala has opened about 13 lakh new accounts and has mobilised 326 crore rupees through intensive financial literacy campaigns launched under the support of the State Level Banker’s Committee (SLBC).

Kerala was able to achieve this target under PMJDY ahead of schedule because of Financial Literacy Centres which are active in all the 152 blocks of state. Under this scheme, 5.25 lakh rupees debit cards have been issued by all banks.

State government is also opening a second account separately for the woman in each household under PMJDY.