Skip to main content

Campaign against child trafficking, labour begins in Jharkhand's mica mining area

By Our Representative 

Kailash Satyarthi’s Children’s Foundation (KSCF), an initiative of Nobel Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi, has launched a week-long Mass Awareness Rathyatra against child trafficking, child labour and promotion of quality education for children in the mica mining region of Jharkhand.
The Rathyatra will cover over 100 villages in the region and has been jointly organized with Railway Protection Force (RPF), District Child Protection Unit (DCPU) and district police authorities.
Designed for a week-long campaign, the Mass Awareness Rath (chariot) was flagged off by the Koderma district deputy development commissioner Lokesh Mishra, in the presence of JawaharLal, Shimpi Kumari and Ankur Kumar, inspectors in RPF, representatives of Bal Panchayats and police officials. Children of the Vivekanand Academy, Koderma, held a street play to create awareness against child labour during the flagging off event.
The Rath was led by Bal Panchayat members, who were selected from among the Bal Mitra Gram (BMG) around the mica mining region. Around 400 people participated in the flagging off event of the week-long Mass Awareness Rathyatra.
The Rath is scheduled to travel around Koderma for four days and will then cover Giridih for the remaining three days. Pamphlets raising awareness against child labour and child marriage will be distributed, jan-choupals, street plays and public meetings will be organised during the week-long campaign.
Lokesh Mishra said, “From a very long time our district has been a victim of various forms of child exploitation, especially child marriage and child trafficking. However, the initiatives of KSCF & BBA in the direction of awareness generation and leadership building among the children is commendable.”
He added, “This Yatra will be a milestone and I believe that this will gain a very positive response from the masses… We need to work collectively to eliminate all the anti social elements in the society. The district administration extends its support & assistance. I also hope that the awareness generation Yatra will continue even after seven days”.
Bal Panchayat member Sarita Kumari and anti-child marriage brand ambassador Radha Pandey said, “Our aim is to spread awareness against child labour, child marriage and trafficking amongst the public. Rural people are not aware that child marriage also leads to trafficking”.
Jawaharlal said, “We are together in this. Only with collective efforts of administration, police and social organisations can we end the menace of child trafficking and child labour. Earlier RPF was limited to its jurisdiction under the railways, but after joining hands with KSCF, it is happy to extend its jurisdiction, reaching the remotest villages of the state generating mass awareness. This Yatra will only be successful when every citizen joins in”.
Several BMG officials, including Manoj Kumar, Amit Kumar, Chandan, Mintu among other Bal Panchayat members and representatives were present during the event. Also BMG district co-ordinator Surendra Pandit and manager Subir Roy and state co-ordinator of Bachpan Bachao Andolan (BBA), Shyam Kumar, were present.
BMG is a novel concept conceived by KSCF, in which children don the leadership role to spread awareness amongst the rural population about child labour and to promote quality education for children.
Gobind Khanal, programme manager of BMG, said, “This Rath is intended to travel around Koderma and Giridih for a week covering villages, panchayats, block headquarters, schools and markets. Pamphlets would be distributed at all these places, street plays, night choupals and songs will be organized to spread awareness in these areas”.



'Very low rung in quality ladder': Critique of ICMR study on 'sudden deaths' post-2021

By Bhaskaran Raman*  Since about mid-2021, a new phenomenon of extreme concern has been observed throughout the world, including India : unexplained sudden deaths of seemingly healthy and active people, especially youngsters. In the recently concluded Navratri garba celebrations, an unprecedented number of young persons succumbed to heart attack deaths. After a long delay, ICMR (Indian Council for Medical Research) has finally has published a case-control study on sudden deaths among Indians of age 18-45.

SC 'appears to foster' culture of secrecy, does not seek electoral bond details from SBI

By Rosamma Thomas*  In its order of November 2, 2023 on the case of Association for Democratic Reforms vs Union of India contesting constitutional validity of electoral bonds, the Supreme Court directed all political parties to give particulars of the bonds received by them in sealed covers to the Election Commission of India. SC sought that information be updated until September 2023. 

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Only 12% of schools RTE compliant: Whither 6% budgetary allocation for education?

By Ambarish Rai* Despite Indian state’s commitment of 6% GDP on education, the Finance Minister completely ignored right to education for children and strengthening implementation of RTE Act which makes education a fundamental right in her budget speech . The Right to Education (RTE) Forum, which is a collective of different stakeholders in education, condemns this neglect of a legal entitlement, which is unconstitutional and demand for overall increase in the budget to ensure improvement in learning outcomes and overall enhancement of quality education.

Savarkar in Ahmedabad 'declared' two-nation theory in 1937, Jinnah followed 3 years later

By Our Representative One of the top freedom fighters whom BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi revere the most, Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, was also a great supporter of the two nation theory for India, one for Hindus another for Muslims, claims a new expose on the man who is also known to be the original proponent of the concept of Hindutva.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Reject WHO's 'draconian' amendments on pandemic: Citizens to Union Health Minister

By Our Representative  Several concerned Indian citizens have written to the Union Health Minister to reject amendments to the International Health Regulations (IHR) of the World Health Organization (WHO) adopted during the 75th World Health Assembly (WHA75) in May 2022, apprehending this will make the signatories surrender their autonomy to the “unelected, unaccountable and the whimsical WHO in case of any future ‘pandemics’.”

'Ambiguous policy': India late in advocating EVs as energy storage in national grid

By Shankar Sharma*  This is regarding the points raised by the Chief Electricity Authority’s (CEA's) advocacy for usage of electrical vehicles (EVs) as energy storage technology, and few associated issues . An objective reading of what he states should reiterate the enormously growing importance of battery energy storage systems (BESS) in our need to transition to a net-zero carbon scenario for the country.

Union Health Ministry, FSSAI 'fail to respond' to NHRC directive on packaged food

By Our Representative  The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has expressed deep concern over the adverse health effects caused by packaged foods high in salt, sugar, and saturated fats. Recognizing it as a violation of the Right to Life and Right to Health of Indian citizens, the quasi-judicial body called for a response from the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) regarding its selection of front-of-pack labels aimed at providing consumers with information to make healthier choices.