Current Affairs Today - Current Affairs 2014 - Page 7

Government to open three new Child helpline Centres

Government has decided to open three new child helpline centres in Kolkata, Gurgaon and Chennai which will cover 500 cities and towns to provide prompt help to distressed children across the country.

In 1996, Childline-the 24-hour helpline was started in Mumbai. Currently, it reaches out to 282 locations across India with the help of 543 partners, among which are the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) and Tata Consultation Services (TCS).

But, it is becoming difficult for the Mumbai centre to attend to all the calls made to the helpline, resulting in many calls getting abandoned. It only covered calls from North and West (India) effectively.

Now by introducing 3 more centres, will help to reduce burden of Mumbai centre and help to cater all calls from children in the South and East. Thus, help to cover entire country effectively.

The three new centres would be nodal bases providing service to the rest of the locations. The service reach of the new centres will be expanded to 500 cities and towns in next two years.

This Childline, can be reached on the number-1098 and so far this year received 38,22,081 calls of which 4 per cent were about missing children.

With all the regional centres in place, the service would become more prominent as anyone can immediately contact the nearest NGO to reach out to the child to provide prompt help.

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.

Martyrdom day of Guru Teg Bahadur observed on 24 November


Martyrdom Day of 9th Sikh guru, Guru Teg Bahadur was being observed on 24th November 2014. It was on this day in 1675, Guru Teg Bahadur had sacrificed his life in Chandni Chowk, Delhi on the orders of the sixth Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb.

Events organised to observe Martyrdom Day of Guru Teg Bahadur

  • In Punjab, main religious congregations were being organised at Anandpur Sahib in Ropar district where Guru’s head was cremated and in the Gurudwaras which are related to the memory of Guru.
  • Community kitchens have been set up at many places. Devotees visited the Gurudwaras since morning and continuous gurbani recitation took place.
  • A special journey known as “Rin Uttar Yatra’ to pay gratitude to great guru has started from Anandpur Sahib, Rupnagar district, Punjab on 23rd November 2014 and it will conclude at Gurudwara Sis Ganj Delhi.
  • Seminars were organized at many places in Punjab and Haryana by the Sikh scholars to apprise younger generation about guru’s sacrifice.

About Guru Tegh Bahadur

Guru Teg Bahadur is also known as Hind Di Chadder- Protector of India. He had sacrificed his life for the unity of the society of that period and to stop religious tyranny under the rule of sixth Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. He became the 9th Guru of Sikhs on 16 April 1664, a position earlier occupied by his grand-nephew, Guru Har Krishan.

He had travelled in different parts of the country, including Dhaka and Assam, to preach the teachings of Guru Nanak, the first Sikh guru. Guru Tegh Bahadur was executed on the orders of Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in Delhi for resisting the forced conversions of Hindus in Kashmir.

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