As per Census 2011, the youth comprises 19.1% of the total population, which is estimated to cross 34.33% by 2020, i.e. the year that just went by. The percentage is not tremendous, but the number is staggering. With a population of 1.32 billion people, 1% of it sums up to 76 million people, which is more than the population of Thailand, the 20th largest country by population.
What does this population growth signify? Will it be a boon for the country to sustain this large population or will it cause a rise in corruption and riots? As per the IDM, the pressure on India’s soil, air and water will be the highest in the world. This indicates a crisis in India way worse than the ongoing Covid-19 crisis the world is facing.
The population growth rate in urban India is 2.3056%. There are no precise findings on the urban slum growth rate, but it is clear from the ground that this population is high in areas in the urban milieu, which means that a large number of Indians will be born poor or below the poverty line. Although our per capita income is on a constant rise, 1% of the rich continue to have control over 70% of our wealth.
Statistics are omnipresent and the problems are also underlined, yet, why can’t we find the right solution? There are various solutions and they have assisted in improving the economic conditions of our population, but a major revolution awaits. Will the youth be responsible?
Youths are spread everywhere on the internet and have access to data like never before. They are truly equipped with the knowledge required to bring change. A major problem with the youth is not being able to produce original opinions or ideas. To a great extent, Indians have been in the habit of imitating the Western culture, irrespective of the difference of the problems that the East and West face.
It was anticipated that the youth will guide the elderly and the kids to protect themselves from the Covid crisis, but nothing like that happened. Instead, on one hand, the youth appealed the government to cancel examinations, and on the other, the same students spent this time sightseeing in the city.
The main problem wasn’t sightseeing, but doing so without taking any preventive measures. And sadly, this sect of the youth is known to be literate and responsible. The Indian education system is highly criticised for its rote learning problem. The attention that was earlier rewarded to engineering has reduced, and fields of commerce and humanities are becoming a popular choice. This means more and more people are making economics their field of study.
These people will be the ones running a healthy economy over due course of time. Start-ups in India are increasing each passing year and these small-scale units will provide employment to people at a higher per capita income. India is constantly pushing up its employment rate, but the number of people required to run a healthy economy cannot all be accumulated into the working economy.
How can the youth solve the problem of unemployment? By bringing a balance between communist and capitalist ideas. For instance, we know communism comes with its own systemic problems, but its universal healthcare system and education in school studies are in favour of all citizens and must be mandated.
The Indian youth is sharp and bright, and will play a major role in overcoming the ongoing crisis. They’ll find innovative ways to implement social distancing and suggest brilliant ideas to bring the devastated economy back on track. The problem is not lack of talent, utilisation and accumulation of resources.
Covid-19 brought studies and work opportunities to a halt, and when this is the scenario, the youth should focus on learning life lessons. This crisis has a lot to teach. Mexico and India were some of the few countries where doctors and other frontline workers were attacked, and those who sighted attacks were not old-aged people; they were young adults.
We have a responsibility to teach them so that India can be on the path of progress. At the time this article was written, amid the China issue and boycotting Bollywood trends, the need is to talk about bigger issues such as India’s wrecked economy, hunger and poverty. but these topics almost never come into the limelight. This is where the youth should take the responsibility to talk about the right things, and no one would be able to stop India from achieving soft power in the near future.