The pandemic might be ending soon but what about the cracks and gaps in the system that the pandemic has brought to light?
From digital divide in education to lack of access to menstrual hygiene products due to the disruption of the supply chain, 2020 has been a year that has made us realise we weren’t really living in a sustainable world. Rather, we were viewing the world through our rose-tinted glasses ignoring the most pertinent issues in our country and subsequently in the world.
On the occasion of National Youth Day when the country has risen to celebrate the youth, the citizens should remember that a few months back these very young people were beaten up for peacefully protesting against CAA-NRC and other questionable laws and bills that government kept approving amidst the pandemic. Universities became a den of violence and even libraries and hostels were not spared.
Amidst the pandemic too, we have seen young activists being charged with the archaic UAPA and being put behind bars for claiming their basic constitutional right of voicing their concerns. Time and again when the students screamed for their basic right to education, we ignored with this thought in the mind that there’s only so much we can do about anything. We ignored the cries of the bright, young scholars who had to drop out due to the economic crisis. We also forgot about the budding mathematician who had to take the deadly step of killing herself.
So are we really ready to celebrate National Youth Day even if we fail to recognise the needs and concerns of our future generation and our young people who we claim to be the backbone of our economy? Or is the National Youth Day only meant to celebrate the youngsters who can afford to sit behind virtual screens?