Youth is the age that carries the burdens of a country’s hopes and aspirations. At the same time, it is also that phase of life when the question about one’s own identify, future and place in the world are lurking in front of them, This results in an inevitable conflict between what the youth sees as its rights and learns as it duties. This conflict becomes even more pertinent in a developing country where, on the one hand the youth is spellbound and fascinated by the plethora of opportunities presented to them for the sake of their individual fulfillment and on the other hand country is also banking upon its demographic dividend derived from its youth to take the next leap towards becoming a developed nation. This becomes starkingly correct when it comes to Indian Youth.
Indian youth is today at the same cross-road of rights and duties. The essay deals with the dynamics of the arrival of this cross-road; what this conflict entails; potential costs for the individual and the country in the scenario of being stuck with this conflict; and lastly the possible way out.
Indian youth or youths of any vast developing nation are vulnerable to get torn between the national aspirations and their individual global dreams. In this modern, globalized and technologically advanced world, most youths are well aware of the global happenings around them. This knowledge provides them a better understanding of their own country’s social and political set up, which empowers them to feel, and rightly so, entitled to a dignified and equal status as a citizen. But it is the same youth upon whom responsibility lies to carry forward these very benefits and entitlements which helped them reach the privileged status, to the vast underprivileged section of the society. Also, upon them lies the responsibility to create an overall enabling environment which grows and develops in a truly inclusive way. But does the Indian youth want to engage in this Endeavor? It is here with this question that the conflict arises.
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So basically, the conflict which the Indian youth is facing can be summarized as the conflict between that they view as their rights and what is expected of them as their duties. By virtue of being equipped with so many resources and energy, the youths desire a life of amenities for themselves. Such ambitions often keep them aloof of their immediate surroundings, i.e., the problems of their own locality or country. The glitter of the globalized urban world seems such a lucrative option to them that they only want to cater to this world and enjoy its subsequent benefits. But the same world in general and their own country in particular, that gives them all these opportunities, require that the Indian youth realizes their responsibilities and duties towards it. For example, India produces one of the largest numbers of doctors, engineers, IT professionals and rich business conglomerates, but India’s health and education sector are hugely lagging behind the desirable standard. India requires its youth to invest themselves in every aspect of its social and political infrastructure in order to move up the growth and development ladder. Realizing and ultimately fulfilling these duties is not easy to do, for it requires that they sacrifice their own aspirations for the sake of the betterment of their community. For example, serving as a doctor or a bureaucrat in a remote village in the hinterlands of India without modern facilities, even road and internet connectivity would require a great amount of determination and will on their part.
The formation of this conflict entails significant costs for the nation but the individual youth who is the formative unit of the nation is not spared either. The nation or the society which is denied prioritization by its own youth loses the chance to utilize its demographic dividend. Similarly, Indian youth who fail to fulfill their duties pay the price by gradually getting alienated and uprooted from their own society. Constant drift towards the global world does not necessarily result into this rootlessness, but when this drift lacks realization of one’s duties and a sense of loyalty, gratitude and responsibility, it’s then that the process of disruption of one’s links to one’s ethnicity, community and culture begins. The result of this alienation could be very unsettling for youths as they would be left with no sense of belonging and no ground to fall back on, if the glitter fades.
This conflict needs to be resolved soon because not only it is hindering the development of the society but also making the Indian youth feel alienated in a more unequal society. The resolution of this conflict between rights and duties can be initiated with the inculcation of the understanding that rights and duties complement each other. The conflict arises when the balance between the two is broken. While the tendency to exploit one’s rights is secured in the fundamental structure of the constitution itself, the duties have been left to the sensibilities of an aware citizenry. The lack of commitment towards or awareness of the duties can be seen as the result or the inadequate knowledge of it. So it is by attempting to confront those two issues that we can confront and resolve the problem of conflict between rights and duties being faced by Indian youth.
The resolution of this conflict needs support of the society as well as the government. The government needs to create an enabling environment for the Indian youth to join the effort of nation formation in various capacities. On the other hand, society needs to sensitize its youth from their childhood itself about their role and needs of assistance in society and nation formation process. Also, the danger of alienation and rootlessness from its society must also be studied and discussed in the civil space. Hence, by taking the sensitive approach and increasing the awareness among Indian youth about the complementary nature of its rights and duties, can one really hope to end this conflict that youth faces between their rights and duties.
Towards conclusion, it can be said that Indian youth are the backbone of any society and country. They are the most important and crucial resources, a nation has at its disposal to fulfill its hopes and aspirations. The Indian youth being caught in a conflict between its rights and duties is not a tragedy for the society and the nation but also depicts the failure of the value system which failed to inculcate the spirit of service in its youth. Indian value system has been revered for its sublime humanitarian values. It’s high time our nation rediscovers the ways to transmit the humane values to our Indian youth in novel ways so as to proceed towards the resolution of this conflict.