Category Archives: General

Backdrop:Aligarh Muslim University

Backdrop:Aligarh Muslim University

Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) is a Residential Academic Institution located in the city of Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, India. It was established in 1875 by Sir Syed Ahmed Khan and in 1920 it was granted a status of Central University by an Act of Indian Parliament. It is one of the premier central universities in India. Aligarh Muslim University offers more than 250 Courses in traditional and modern branch of Education. This is a premier Central University with several faculties and maintained institutions and draws students from all corners of the world, especially Africa, West Asia and South East Asia. In some courses, seats are reserved for students from SAARC and Commonwealth countries. The University is open to all irrespective of caste, creed, religion or gender. It is ranked 8th best (2009 ranking) of all research universities in India by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) of India. There are 16 Halls of residence comprising 69 hostels

The Aligarh Muslim University is in the middle of many controversies. These controversies stem from the university’s dual status as a central institution and as a body established by the Muslims. The former necessarily involves state responsibility in respect of finance and ensuring its secular character consistent with the Constitution. The latter raises fundamental questions concerning minority rights.

Specifically, three student upsurges have to mentioned in this context. In, 1965, Ali Yawar Jung, AMU VC, brought a law declaring 50% reservation for internal students and a ruckus broke in campus and police fired on students, injuring three. The Students Union Hall was fired at the time when a University Court meeting was being held. Congress government cancelled the autonomy of the university.

Later, in 1971, an act was introduced through which the minority character of the university was scrapped. Congress is being accused by Pro Muslim for crushing AMU’s Islamic character in one form or the other by diluting the Students Union or resurrecting a parallel Student Council or trying to belittle the autonomous character of the university.

In 2007, three students were murdered in a row and students initiated protests. They had burnt down many important buildings of the university, including V.C Lodge. Arson and looting had forced the authorities to declare sine die.

In 2009, On Oct 30, Shahnawaz Alam, a B.Sc final year student of the varsity – was shot dead by assailants. Around 600 students had blocked Delhi-Howrah rail route for hours, demanding action against those involved in the murder. Protesting students had also disrupted the academic and official work in the varsity and also manhandled some university employees.

The tenures of Vice Chancellors (VCs) at Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) in the last couple of decades ran into substantial problems of indiscipline, students’ strikes, violence, arson, forced shutdown of university, indifferent academic achievement, lack of pursuit of excellence and discontent in the community that AMU serves. Most of these Vice Chancellors were distinguished and competent managers. The student upsurges in AMU are invariably engineered/sustained by some lobbies to incapacitate the VC, who will in turn depend upon these lobbies, who will consequently extract favours of lucrative/ powerful positions of academic administration, promotion, contracts/ kickbacks.

It is observed that AMU is sustaining an environment which is not suitable for social harmony and integration of Muslims with the mainstream. The university (AMU) Tarana (song) does not contain a single word in praise of India but it glorifies such things as the evenings of Egypt and the mornings of Shiraj. The university flag has greater resemblance with the flags of Muslim countries, with moon and palm tree stamped on it, than with that of India”. In stead of pursuing the academic goal of the university its authorities are mostly engaged in arousing the religious sentiments of Muslims with a view to keep alive the bogey of its minority character

SIMI has its roots in the Aligarh Muslim University. It was officially established on April 25, 1977 that SIMI was slowly spreading its roots across Uttar Pradesh and then establishing outposts in Maharashtra,Kerala and West Bengal.

Recently, the university is is also trying to establish its branches in other parts of the country. An Off-Campus Centre of the Aligarh Muslim Universty is being setup in Kerala state.

PLAN International Children Development Agency

PLAN International Children Development Agency

Founded over 70 years ago, PLAN is one of the oldest and largest international development agencies in the world. They work in 49 developing countries across Africa, Asia and the Americas. The field of work is in Education, providing water and sanitation, Tackling violence against Children, towards halting the spread of HIV and AIDS, support to Children after disasters, income generation and cross-cultural communication.

Plan directly supports more than 1,500,000 children and their families, and indirectly supports an estimated further 9,000,000 people who live in communities that are working with Plan. They work with ommunities, organisations and local governments in realizing its objectives. Children are involved in all aspects of our programmes, working with adults who have learnt to value their contribution. PLAN is working towards protecting and promoting children’s rights. Plan cliams to be an independent agency, with no religious, political or governmental affiliations.
Nearly 1,100,000 people in 17 donor countries have participated in Child sponsoring programme. An average 80% of donations goes directly to support programmes benefiting children and families.

Indian operations focus on Education, girl child and gender gap. In its official website, there are some exaggerated notes about the status of Indian women.
“A feudal and conservative ethos keeps the women in the region silenced, exhausted, veiled and secluded from birth to death. The Thar has one of the Th lowest and declining sex ratios in India. The girl child is discriminated against, and girls are commonly married off as soon as they reach puberty, when they are sent to the husbands family home and from then on permanently veiled and secluded”.

PLAN received 500K pounds from Slumdog millionaire team for providing education to slum children of Mumbai.

Structure of the Catholic Church

Structure of the Catholic Church

The Roman Catholic Church is organised in a worldwide hierarchy under the pope. Pope is the leader of the Roman Catholic Church and head of state of Vatican City. The Pope nominates Bishops to every region of the world. Bishops are governors of the church. The Pope is the Bishop of Rome. A Bishop is responsible for teaching the faith and ruling the church. Diocese is the territory of administration of a Bishop. A cardinal is a Bishop appointed by the Pope to serve in the College of Cardinals, the body empowered to elect someone to the papacy. Approximately, for every 100 Bishops, one Cardinal will be selected. Archbishop is an elevated Bishop. Archbishop administers Archdiocese. The highest-ranking bishop is patriarch. Some senior Roman Catholic Archbishops are also called Patriarchs. Archbishops and Bishops administer individual dioceses as successors of the twelve apostles. As such they are responsible for the appointment and supervision of parish priests, and the oversight of all church affairs within their diocese. A parish is a territorial unit that was usually historically served by a local church. The Catholic Church is organised into local hierarchies within each nation, or group of smaller nations. National Conferences of bishops co-ordinate local policy within each nation. The Catholic Church is organised into local hierarchies within each nation, or group of smaller nations. National Conferences of bishops co-ordinate local policy within each nation.

As of 3 December 2008, the ecclesiastical jurisdiction statistics is as follows; 13 Patriarchate, 536 Metropolitan Archdiocese, 79 Archdiocese, 2,165 Diocese.

A religious order is a lineage of communities and organizations of people who live in some way set apart from society in accordance with their specific religious devotion, usually characterized by the principles of its founder’s religious practice. They follow a form of consecrated life in the Roman Catholic Church. They do so for the purpose of imitating Jesus more closely, mainly but not exclusively by observing evangelical chastity, poverty and obedience, which are the three evangelical counsels of perfection. A Religious Order is characterized by an authority structure where a Superior General has jurisdiction over the order’s dependent communities. Pontifical Council Cor Unum is the dicastery (Department) responsible for coordinating the charitable activities of the Catholic Church.

There are two principal types of Catholic religious orders. Members of congregations (such as the Congregation of Holy Cross) take simple vows, while members of orders proper (such as the Society of Jesus) take solemn vows. The term congregation sometimes also applies to branches of an order such as for women in addition to the pre-existing one for men, or tertiaries. Additionally, a number of generic terms, which are not always exclusively defined, exist to define groups of orders and congregations, such as mendicant orders or canons regular. As well particular or familiar names exist for religious such as Brother and Sister, whereas older terms including Monk and Nun are now more infrequently used. Technically Nuns are religious women who profess solemn vows rather than simple vows.

The religious orders could be Contemplative orders” (such as Benedictines, Carmelites, Trappists, Carthusians, Cistercians, etc.) are those who primarily focus is to grow in union with God for the love of God and the salvation souls. Such communities typically have little interaction with society. “Active” orders (Franciscans, Dominicans, Missionaries of Charity, etc.) are those who tend to have more direct interaction with the world than contemplative orders. While still principally prayer-centered, active orders generally dedicate more time to certain apostolates, such as feeding the hungry, teaching, preaching, missions, youth retreats, and various forms of service to the community.