Empowering the next generation for Democracy

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International Day of Democracy

By: M Ahmad

Democracy is a universally recognized ideal and is one of the core values and principles of the United Nations. It provides an environment for the protection and effective realization of human rights. It is a political system in which the citizens are involved in the decisions and governing of the country regarding choices that will affect their lives. Citizens have the right to participate directly or indirectly in the shaping of the country through the voting system.

The current economic and social context is creating very diverse challenges for young people. They are often the first to be affected by unemployment and discrimination. With increasing fragmentation and economic inequalities of our societies there is a real risk of social exclusion of young people. The Youth for Democracy programme seeks to achieve the active participation and autonomy of young people in peaceful and inclusive societies.  Increasing political knowledge by introducing subjects in universities and schools that encourage youths to participate in political discussions ensures that they know the importance of their role as youths in the development of our country. Breeding confidence in youth with subjects that increases critical thinking develops a positive attitude and mind-set towards their choices.

It is a well-known fact that the youth of any country is a great asset. They are indeed the future of the country and represent it at every level. The role of youths in nation-building is more important than we might think. In other words, the intelligence and work of the youth will take the country on the pathway of success. As every citizen is equally responsible, the youth is too. They are the building blocks of a country. For youth to be good leaders, inventors and innovators, it is important that they are supported and are provided good health, training, and education to transform the future. There will be a boost in the economy of the country when the youth is working and earning rather than being dependent on anyone. Our youth can bring social reform and improvement in society. We cannot make do without the youth of a country. Furthermore, the nation requires their participation to achieve the goals and help in taking the country towards progress.

The role of Youth in nation-building or development is very important, and this is because the development of any nation lies in the future generation. Democracy, economy, technology and the improvement of medical science all lie in the hands of the Youth. Poverty, unemployment, global warming, and pollution of many types are the problems that the world is facing today. The answer to solving all these problems lies with the next generation. Youth is the most dynamic and important segment of the population in any country. Statistics show that the developing countries which have a huge youth population could be seeing tremendous growth in all the sectors of the countries provided they invest in young people’s education, health and protect and guarantee their rights. It is believed that today’s young minds and tomorrow’s leaders, creators, builders, and innovators.

The role of youth in politics is crucial in shaping the future of a nation. As the torchbearers of change, they are instrumental in driving the political landscape towards a more inclusive and progressive direction. Young people, with their energy and passion, often serve as catalysts for political change. They are typically more open to embracing new ideas and are less constrained by traditional political ideologies. This makes them a potent force in challenging the status quo and pushing for political reform.  The path to political participation for the youth is not without challenges. They often face barriers such as age restrictions, lack of opportunities, and the perception that they are inexperienced. Overcoming these obstacles requires concerted efforts from all stakeholders, including the government, educational institutions, and civil society.

Active and engaged young people can be a source of government innovation and improved service. By encouraging youth to participate in open government initiatives, governments can create positive impact on a personal level and with regard to the overall development of societies and economies. For instance, governments can encourage the development of new, innovative industries and initiatives whilst young people can provide governments with fresh ideas and approaches and ensure that policy outcomes are responsive to the concerns of young people.

The youth is soon turning out to be a responsible part of the population, which wishes to see a change in the governance. The youth is not scared of voicing its opinion and it is not scared of bearing the consequences which come later. The youth is also aware that it has responsibilities when it comes to the nation and that nobody else but they could save the country which might soon be in a crisis. Understanding the current situation, there is a major role of the youth in the democracy, given the freedom to work the way they want to, the youth can change or rather transform the way the country functions.

Thus, if the youth starts exercising its full power, then it can easily take over the democracy and change it over till it becomes completely unrecognizable. The youth today, is already miffed with the governance given the bans and the inadequacy of their actions and when the time is right, it will come out and leave no stone unturned to start a new era of Indian politics. This act will change the way the world perceives India and will bring a new leadership, a new stability and a refreshing change in the Indian democracy.

Meaningful democracy requires the meaningful participation of youth. Young people have much to offer societies – from innovation to creativity to new thinking. Their participation in democracy promotes active citizenship, strengthens social responsibility and can enhance democratic processes and institutions. And today’s young citizens are tomorrow’s leaders and decision-makers.

No one is born a good citizen; no nation is born a democracy. Rather, both are processes that continue to evolve over a lifetime. Young people must be included from birth. A society that cuts off from its youth severs its lifeline- Kofi Annan

M Ahmad is a regular writer for this newspaper and can be reached at [email protected]


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