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New York: In the Global List of the happiest nations, India was ranked 118th out of 156 countries. India has come down one slot as compared to the previous year. Hence, failing to make any improvement.

The World Happiness Report 2016 was published by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and the Earth Institute at Columbia University. The report takes into account GDP per capita, life expectancy, social support and freedom to make choices.


The list is topped by Denmark followed by Switzerland, Iceland, Norway and Finland. Countries like Syria, Afghanistan, Madagascar, Liberia & Burundi were noted as the least happiest countries.

According to the report, India was among the 10 countries witnessing the largest happiness decline along with Venezuela, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Yemen & Botswana.

For the first time, the report, released on UN Happiness day March 20 indicates the measurement and consequences of inequalities in well-being of different nations and regions of the world. Previously, there have been arguments that happiness proves to be a better indicator of people’s welfare in comparison to income, poverty, education, health and a strong government.

The report reflects a new demand for greater attention to happiness as part of government’s policies. It provides evidence on how to achieve social well-being which is not money alone but also includes good health, fairness and honesty.

The report also exhibits that a nation’s key challenge is to make sure that the government polices are designed and delivered in such a manner that it enriches the social framework and teach the power of empathy to the present and future generations. (Inputs from Agencies)


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Kerala Kalamandalam admits girl students after 90 years

Kerala Kalamandalam that teaches the globally recognized art form of Kerala -- Kathakali, has for the first time in its history of 90 years, admitted girl students.

In class VII of Kalamadalam, out of 10 students admitted, 9 are girl students for its Kathakali course. Kathakali is a highly masculine art form with even the female characters being portrayed by men. The attempt is being welcomed across the world.

However several women had started practicing Kathakali in 1970 and 1990 and K.K. Gopalakrishnan, renowned art critic of Kerala in his research book, 'Kathakali Dance - Theatre', said that some women from foreign countries had trained for some short-term courses in Kerala on Kathakali.

Most of these performing women artists were either trained privately by Kathakali masters but this is the first time that Kalamandalam is taking in girl students for its long-term programme.

T.K. Narayanan, Vice-Chancellor, Kerala Kalamandalam told media persons that giving admission to girl students in Kalamadalam was a demand for several quarters since long and that this academic year the governing body has decided to give admission to girl students in a full-time programme at Kalamandalam.

Training at Kalamandalam from school days would expose the students to the teaching and guidance of experts and a diverse pool of teachers of the institute who have huge exposure and deep knowledge of the subject. (IANS/JB)


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Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said the Delhi government would arrange free-of-cost travel for senior citizens from Delhi to Ayodhya.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday said the Delhi government would arrange free-of-cost travel for senior citizens from Delhi to Ayodhya.

"I want every Indian should be fortunate enough to have a 'darshan' (visit) of Ram Lalla. I am a small man but Lord Ram has given me enough and I will use my position to help people to come for darshan here," Kejriwal added after offering prayers at the Ram Janmabhoomi temple in Ayodhya on Tuesday.

Speaking to the media, he said, "I pray to Lord Ram to help India move ahead in the world and bring prosperity for 130 crore people."

Kejriwal, who visited the Hanuman Garhi temple, said he was fortunate enough to be in Ayodhya and seek blessings from Lord Ram for the welfare of Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, and the rest of the country.

The Delhi Chief Minister had arrived at the temple town on Monday and attended the 'Sarayu aarti' where he interacted with saints and seers. (IANS/JB)


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Tamil Nadu will host the national blind football tournament for men and women.

Tamil Nadu will host the national blind football tournament for men and women from October 27-30. This is the first time the state is playing host to the national blind football tournament.

The state has formed a blind football team for men only in 2018, and, in 2019 the Tamil Nadu blind football association commenced functioning.

The founder of the TN Blind football association, GR Bharathiraja, while speaking to IANS said, "While we were late in establishing a team and forming an association, we have not lagged behind in training, and a good team is now arranged. We are hosting the national football championship for the blind in both men's and women's categories from October 27."

This is the first time a national-level women's blind football tournament is being conducted while this will be the sixth national blind football tournament for men.

The teams are coached by Francis Sebastian who is an acclaimed blind football coach and he said that the tournament was slated for 2023 but the associations put pressure on the national office-bearers and have made the tournament possible in 2021 itself.

Sebastian, while speaking to IANS, said, "While both the men's and women's teams are performing extremely well, we need more support from sponsors as well as the general public. In the northeastern states of the country, blind football is popular in villages and we are planning to make it popular among the masses of Tamil Nadu, and for that, we need more support and patronage."

The state association, as a first step, is planning to introduce football in every blind school of the state and to train coaches for the same. The blind football association also wants to divide the state into five zones with each zone comprising of some districts and to decentralise the coaching programme so that the game is introduced across the state.

Bharathiraja and Sebastian have said that infrastructural problems are plaguing the game and that the team does not have a playing ground of its own, but the passion for the game is pulling the organisers, players, and coach forward. (IANS/JB)

Keywords: Football, Sports, Blind Tournament. national blind football tournament, Tamil Nadu blind football association