State youth policies-the need of hour

State Youth Policies-The need of hour

         

  By Sadaket Malik

The youth policy directs the government to ensure gainful empleyment and total empowerment for unreached. In India there is no scarcity or dearth of welfare policies but the problem lies in primarily to rationalise these policies in to the logical frame work.Most these policies are top driven, lacking pro people and holistic welfare approach.
                    Most importantly, policies are being made and at the same time policies are being lost either, or need to be recovered by the researchers after a long time to see what was there in the particular policy. National youth Policy- 2003 is one of such policy, may be policy maker themselves has forgotten about this Policy.
                   I strongly feel that each and every Policies of our country should and must have special provision for all the Northern states, in particular a backward and trouble torn state like Jammu and kashmir. Is it really essential to mention the situation of the youth of  the state ? Drug, insurgency, ill effect of globalisation has thrown the youth of state in to a futureless and hope less situation. There are no employment opportunities for them, no place to breathe in the fresh air.
                Ironically, The National Youth Policy 2003 has not covered any specific aspect of the youth of the state. In this policy issue of empowerment is just touched in a superficial manner without touching the grave situation of the state. Corruption thy name is J&K. Issue of addressing corruption is also just touched without mentioning the in-depth mechanism.
                  In the Serial no 4 under its onjectives, ” it is mentioned again in a superficial manner in the sub clause 4.5 “to facilitate access, for all sections of the youth, to health information and services and to promote a social environment which strongly inhibits the use of drugs and other forms of substance abuse, ensures measures for de-addiction and mainstreaming of the affected persons and enhances the availability of sports and recreational facilities as constructive outlets for the abundant energy of the youth”.
                        One may argue in a different manner regarding inclusion of special provision for the youth of this state, J&K in particular, as it is mentioned in this policy under clause no 3 in relation of the Defination of Youth, sub clause 3.1 mentioned that “This Policy will cover all the youth in the country in the age group of 13 to 35 years.
                      It is acknowledged that since all the persons within this age group are unlikely to be one homogenous group, but rather a conglomeration of sub-groups with differing social roles and requirements, the age group may, therefore, be divided into two broad sub-groups viz. 13-19 years and 20-35 years. The youth belonging to the age group 13-19, which is a major part of the adolescent age group, will be regarded as a separate constituency” This provision definitely included the youth of Northern states and J&K. I once again plead that they need a special provision in the policy. The youth  as a whole are the the youth of hill, valley, they are the youth of ethnic community, situation is different.
                     In the Preamble of the policy it is mention under sub clause 1.2 “The socio-economic conditions in the country have since undergone a significant change and have been shaped by wide-ranging technological advancement.
                  The National Youth Policy – 2003 is designed to galvanize the youth to rise up to the new challenges, keeping in view the global scenario, and aims at motivating them to be active and committed participants in the exciting task of National Development.” Through this statement the policy maker stated that the Youth Policy 2003 is designed in such a manner so that the youth of India including the youth of North  may rise up to the new challenges keeping in view global so called advancement. If we look at this statement critically the ill effect of globisation will also be promoted. Development of the soil should include the people of the soil not excluding them not prompting the hidden agenda of global actors.
                    Nevertheless, there are a few positive aspects in the National Youth Policy 2003, but most of the clauses do not have any link with grass root reality.
                  Under the clause “Mental Health” it is mentioned in sub clause no 8.3.8 “Lack of proper education often leads to mental depression. In an environment that is becoming complex and competitive by the day, the chances of young minds being afflicted with depression are ever rising. This is particularly so, among adolescents who are showing higher incidence of suicidal traits than even before. Against this background, this Policy advocates a system of education which teaches the youth to fight back rather than give in. It also recommends establishment of statesponsored and free counselling services for the youth, particularly the adolescents”. In the context of  J&K, factors leading towards mental depression is just not lack of proper education. Significant factors are gun culture, extortion, Political trauma, corruption, ethnic conflict and several others.
             Among the positive aspect of the policy are “The Policy recognises that children and young people are particularly vulnerable to the ill effects of environmental degradation.NYK-Nehru Yuva Kendras in J&K has contributed a bit for the same by formulation of local level youth clubs. The number of youth in the age group of 13-35 years, as per the 1991 Census, was estimated at about 34 crores, and about 38 crores in 1997, which is anticipated to increase to about 51 crores by the year 2016. The percentage of youth in the total population, which, according to the 1996 A Census projections, is estimated to be about 37% in 1997, is also likely to increase to about 40% by the year 2016.

            A novel public – private partnership programme to impart education in information technology (IT) to underpriviledged youth and women is being implemented by giving basic IT tranining in areas such as data entry.

             Intrestingly, after 1994 genocide in , thousands of youth were left homeless, with no education and with no means of livelihood. It was in this situation that a group of young IT savvy professionals, under the banner of Cyber Host, initiated a project to rehabilitate the unfortunate youth of . With the assistance of NU-Vision Ministry, Cyber Host provided these youth with basic ICT skills thus meeting part of the requirement of for Information Centres and ICT experts.

           However, what is the crying call of hours? What  the youth can expect in the years to come will depend on how well the Policy is framed viz-a-viz understand and leverage their rights and how willingly and efficiently they are able to shoulder their responsibilities. What then are the rights and responsibilities of the youth of India?
         The National Youth Policy, 2003 be reviewed after 5 years from the date of commencement of implementation of Five years has already been passed , but what has happened particularly in the context of this state in particular ? a question need to responded by the policy makers. State governments should initiate State Youth policies under the ambit of Department of youth services and Sports as a watchdog in youth affairs of the state.

sadaketmalik@rediffmail.com

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