[Analysis states that the average age of an Indian is 28 years. The average age of a Parliamentarian and Legislator is 56 years. 65% of Indians are below the age of 35 years. This makes a major section of the population unrepresented in the Government]
Try conducting a poll related to a topic of political interest and chances are that majority of the responses will include ‘Not interested in politics’ or ‘Don’t even know what this is’. A few may even say that they hate it without even making an attempt to know what it is all about.
“We need more youth in our parliament and assemblies, either it could be through old politicians voluntarily taking retirement or through the reservation of seats for youth.” So said D. Roopa Moudgil, IPS to the young audience at the 2018 Under25 Summit in Bengaluru on February 18th.
Roopa Moudgil was a part of the panel discussion on ‘ Reservation for Youth in Politics’. The other noted panelists included Anil Shetty, lead campaigner for the Youth Reservation Bill. An activist and motivational speaker, he is currently the President of Nav Bharat Democratic Party taking over the reign from R.K.Mishra, Grammy award winner and conservationist, Ricky Kej, South Indian Actress, Sruthi Hariharan, Sandeep Kumar Maini, chairman of the Maini Group of companies.
The discussion commenced with how politics is looked upon by common people. When we live in a democratic country, ignoring politics is close to impossible. However all said and done, a common household in India is most likely to shun their children away from politics saying it carries a lot of negativity.
One of the panellists asked the audience, “Do parents ever say be a politician?” The discussion then led to how politics isn’t generally considered as a career option by many. In this scenario, it should be pursued in a professional manner and not in an indulgent way.
“It is when one gets too attached that selfishness, nepotism and corruption breeds.” said Roopa Moudgil IPS.
Sandeep Kumar Maini voiced his opinion, saying the mindset is that the only thing you return as currency is gratitude. A politician is a leader at the end of the day. If you want to be a true leader, it is important to know what servant leadership is. “Are you happy with a simple or warm thank you? Then you will be a good leader.” he further added.
Anil Shetty, who launched the website at the summit to conduct a survey on a proposed youth reservation bill (www.youthreservationbill.org), said “We want young people to understand that being indifferent to politics is not the solution. The youth in India is like an elephant that has been changed by social conditioning and politics. The elephant can break this chain and bring about change, but it is afraid to do it, we want young people to be motivated to break this chain and lead in politics.”
Ricky Kej supported the Youth Reservation Bill. “I am not a political academician to know the feasibility of this idea but I know for sure, youth participation is extremely essential and critical to the nation’s growth. That’s why I support the Youth Reservation Bill.”
Sruthi Hariharan spoke about how the youth has to take the initiative to be the change.
“Instead of just tweeting about it behind, why not come forward? It is high time we stopped just complaining and began acting on the change we want to see.”
Many of us have to perhaps understand the actual meaning and purpose behind politics. The practices and ideas that the constitution lays forward to us should be understood by citizens. The entire youth of the country needn’t become politicians at various levels in order to bring about change, but surely they need to be curious about it. Instead of making oneself politically bereft, one must embrace it and question the ideas of a democracy.
Bringing you independent, solution-oriented and well-researched stories takes us hundreds of hours each month, and years of skill-training that went behind. If our stories have inspired you or helped you in some way, please consider becoming our Supporter.