Youth and Optimism for India’s Future
The future of the nation lies in the hands of the students and youth. India has a rich cultural and scientific heritage. The nation reigns supreme with its enduring spiritual skills, creativity-inducing diversity and abiding youthfulness, among the league of nations. India is gifted with the right combination of natural and human resources to steer its destiny as an ideal republic.
However, even after 70 years of founding India as a republic, it still languishes in the darkness of poverty, illiteracy and hatred. Large number of best trained minds (e.g. from IITs and IIMs) still migrate to other countries, where they believe they could raise their families.
The 56th Rajagiri Round Table held at Bharatamata School of Legal Studies (BSOLS) in Aluva on 15 January deliberated on Vision 2025 for India and attempted to make a kind of SWOT analysis for India as a nation with some leading questions to the Generation Z, the youth of the nation:
Is it the education system and teaching methods that are letting the youth down, that they feel lesser prepared to help India reach its fullest potential? Or is there a lack of opportunities for the youth? What should be the common minimum political agenda of all political parties in India, irrespective of their ideological compulsions, to ensure India's leading position among the league of nations?
Rev Fr Sebastian Vadakkumpadan, Director of BSOLs and Dr Seline Abraham, Principal made the introductory remarks and the programme was moderated by Sreekumar Raghavan, Editor of Pallikkutam magazine.
The students and youth of today are unhappy with the education system and administration of justice not to speak of lack of opportunities that force scientists and technologists to look for better avenues abroad. However, they showed enthusiasm and the hope that advancements in technology, education reforms and an open-minded attitude of the youth can help nation make rapid strides in economic and social development and in league with the top nations of the world.
Jomy Josy Maliakal, Student
Students have to be taught, how to live life, rather than just taught how to pass the exams. We wouldn’t have to migrate to other countries if we knew the potential of our country. India’s education system should be such that it inspires us to remain here, rooted in our place.
Clinton Pinheiro, student
If we become policy makers, the first thing that we will make sure of is that, the process to start industries is uncomplicated. Bring about necessary policy changes to lighten the barriers that hinder growth of industries and promote them, will be a priority. In China, their income and economy is based on their large industrial base.
Adithya Menon, Student
We are unfortunately living in a country where a politician who has not even finished his basic education has more power and respect, that a teacher who is training the minds of the next generation. In South Korea, teachers are respected and enjoy many privileges. Our treatment of teachers shows our basic attitude towards education, which is pitiable. Good education is the way for bringing out India’s potential. Overhaul of education system is necessary. The text books in school need to be updated with latest facts and researches more frequently. With education comes refinement, passion makes you blind. The value of education has to be instilled in the youth, only then can we leap forward.
Jibin Joji Maniyangadan, Student
The biggest potential of India is its youth. We have seen a time in Kerala where we all stood up and applauded the youth for their massive efforts during the floods. We have the same love for our country as former president APJ Abdul Kalam had, he was not ready to go away and earn more money abroad. This is the same love that you see on the streets of JNU and every other university in the country. They need to be taken seriously by the authorities.
Dr. P.R.Poduval, former director of School of Management Studies, CUSAT
We agree that the youth is very energetic and dynamic. They have to start responding to the issues around them, rather than just reacting. A response has more power to bring change than a reaction. They have to respond in a thoughtful manner. They have to be aware of what they are responding .A lot is changing in India, we need to create a system that will facilitate this change. We have adopted a system where we assumed that the students did not know anything, and the teachers have to teach them. The focus here is on teaching, instead of learning. The teachers should not be there merely to teach, but there to support. This attitude needs to change.
Jinu Samyuktha Padmakumar, Student
Our judicial system is not slow, it is steady. We ensure justice. We as future lawyers of the country will try to make sure that the system becomes a little faster. The fields of forensic investigation, cyber crime can be improved with the youth's initiatives. They can work towards it.
Dr.Job Kuruvila, Academician, Epistemologist
The youth should not be job seekers, but job creators. When looking for jobs, the youth today is more concerned about what they will get rather than what they can give to their fields. The mediocre education system can be turned into something wonderful if the teachers take initiative to turn it into a participatory system.
Mr. Saseendran, Faculty Member
The youth today is not allowed to think independently. Technology has helped students to stay up-to-date about facts. It’s helping students to do their research. The panchayati raj system has failed. But that failure is a big opportunity for today's youth. If you can go there as lawyers today, you can definitely build your careers.
Dr.Anna V Puthuran, Faculty member
Today’s youth is more open- minded. They have the ability to tolerate new ideas and accept different arguments. We need to give them the space to have their voices heard, only then will they be able to speak for others. We can involve them in policy making since the beginning. Maybe that will be a good start.
Dr. Varghese Panthalookaran, Professor at RSET and Managing Director of Pallikkutam
What teaching should be today, is helping the students to learn. Feeding information is no longer the job of the teacher, as information is already available everywhere. The youth knows everything. To churn something out of this jungle of ideas and vision for the future is what is learning. The spark of new ideas and creativity comes from unexpected places. MNCs function with the motive of hire and fire. But the real jobs are created by middle sized companies. We may not be making big companies, but at the same time new startups, middle sized companies, localized companies can create new job opportunities for the local areas. We can create self sufficient villages, self sufficient cities.
Anupama Ravi, student
Mobile phones are not just devices that we use to pass our time anymore. It has become the instrument of our basic researches. When we have a genuine doubt, our teachers may not have the time to dwell into that and clear them, as they have to finish the course. This is where I can just clear my doubt then and there by searching on the internet. Just because some people do not use it in the right way, doesn’t mean that we need to completely ban them. The internet is a big boon to the youth who want to get answers to their curiosity.
Meritta Shaju, student
We can assist the progress of the country only if we have an optimistic attitude towards the future. We will be able to achieve much more things for our country.
- A complete revamp of the education system is the need of the hour. Education cannot just be job oriented. It has to be about imparting better values and promote creative thinking among the students.
- The youth has to be open to learning and not rely on their teachers to spoon feed them. There are many facilities available today to help them learn, apart from relying on their teachers only.
- Incorporation of technology in educational institutions for learning and research. It will be essential in creating an innovative experience for teachers and students alike.
- In legal courses, logic should become a topic of study which will help them to become good lawyers and judges..
- Creating more job opportunities locally for the youth, by encouraging start ups and small companies to come up in villages and cities alike.
- Encouraging the youth to take up creative fields that interests them, instead of making them comply with, societal and parental pressure.