Heartiest congratulations to Youth Ki Awaaz for its glorious 12 years. YKA is known as one of the biggest platforms for citizen journalism and inspires young fellows to write. Having been a YKA user since September 2017, I got featured as a ‘Top Writer’ of the platform in February 2018. As an underprivileged fellow who hails from Assam and just wishes to share my thoughts in my writing, I have written over 60 articles covering issues related to contemporary social affairs, gender issues, current political affairs, international relations and more on this platform so far.
I can firmly say that YKA gives a platform to its users, where they can express themselves openly without the fear of being judged. YKA accepts me just the way I am. It reads my articles patiently and inspires me to keep writing more. This is the best platform to express yourself through your writing and explore your thoughts and views. Most importantly, YKA helps us to develop our skill of writing, understanding and helps us improve ourselves.
I write because writing gives me pleasure. It gives me the space to share my thoughts, connect with people, and most importantly, it evokes in me the spirit to make myself a happy person. It is a form of expression to narrate issues, concerns and trends that need to be catered to. It also helps me find relief by expressing oneself. Gradually, I have come to realise the power of writing, and it gives me peace!
If you ask me who inspires or motivates me to write, I would say, you! The valued readers who always inspire me to write more and more. Also, I had the privilege to learn and seek inspiration from my family. I belong to a family of writers and poets who are splendid in their respective fields. My roof shares the likes of a poet, a columnist and authors of several books in the Assamese, Nepali and English language.
To be honest, through my purest heart, I never considered myself to be a writer; but I love to write and soon enough it became my passion. During my school days, I wrote small pieces in Assamese just because I wanted to create something as a hobby or for fun. Then one fine day, my uncle came to know about my writings. He further inspired and encouraged me to write.
During the late ’90s or early 2000s, he wrote letters to me and sent them via Indian Post. I cherished his words of inspiration, lessons for life, guidance, but most importantly, his love. He urged me to reply and I tried too, via postcards. I conversed in Assamese, which was also the medium of my schooling.
Later, in 2003, when a landline telephone was set up in our home, he used to call me frequently to ask what new stories I’ve written, besides enquiring about my studies. He always gives me valued lessons, most importantly on life. While writing this piece, I remembered my beloved Thulobuba (uncle), Late Phani Sarmah, who left us a few years ago.
My beloved aunty (Sanima), Late Geeta Devi, who passed away recently, used to say: “To do something in life, first, we need to believe in ourselves. For a dreamer to chase the stars.” She always stood besides me as a guide, inspiration and kind supporter. She often pushed words of inspiration and instilled faith in me that led me to move on. This article is also a tribute to these two great souls.
It is known to be true that every citizen’s voice matters in a democratic nation. But, unfortunately, most of those voices remain suppressed. I believe writing is a way of expressing one’s thoughts and ideas. We are living in that era where media is often criticised for its bias and lack of ethics. As the fourth pillar of democracy, media surely is being criticised for its lack of credible reporting. Therefore, I think our voices matter a lot while the media faces problems in its own roots.
In April 2018, I had also written a post titled ‘Our Words Can Start a Silent Revolution’ under the same segment of YKA’s #WhyIWrite and cherished the glorious 10 years of its journey, where I discussed why everyone should speak up about the issues and concerns that are related to the nation-building process. As citizens, our voices matter and help in moving the country forward. I write to express myself freely and for this purpose, YKA is the best platform!
I also extend my gratitude to The News Mill in Guwahati, an Assam-based digital media on which I wrote my first ever article for a digital platform and got my inspiration to write further. It is from them that I started my journey in content writing for digital platforms.
I shall always be thankful to YKA’s Founder and Editor-In-Chief Anshul Tewari sir and the entire team of YKA for giving me the opportunity to write. It has been a great experience with YKA so far. Congratulations once again for a glorious 12 years of your journey. Cheers!