GUWAHATI, July 14 - The youth are the future of a nation and their well-being is always the topmost priority of society. Technological advancement has no doubt prepared them to face the challenges of a modern world, but it has also created confusion in them. With a lot of information at their disposal, they tend to become confounded when it comes to issues like choosing their career or visualising their future. Particularly the young people of the capital city have been experiencing this confusion with access to a lot of information at the click of a button.
According to studies conducted by the North East Youth Foundation in the last few years, the youngsters of the capital city feel at a loss when it comes to deciding about their future. �The crucial issue that needs to be addressed is to extend proper guidance to the youth. The young people living in Guwahati or studying here have more access to information when compared to their counterparts living in the smaller towns and rural areas. And therein lays the problem. They are puzzled as to what career to choose as the avenues are wide,� said Ranjan K Baruah of North East Youth Foundation.
Baruah added that it is also important to motivate the youth to become agents of social change. �From our experiences we are focusing on some issues and areas like good governance, climate change, human rights, etc. Most of the young people want a platform to express their views, which is missing in the city. With the promotion of digital media and social networking sites there is more discussion on the virtual world, which rarely brings a solution to any social problem,� said Baruah, adding that most are concerned about livelihood. With limited government opportunities for livelihood, the foundation is focusing on skill training and entrepreneurship.
�We have also been conducting awareness programmes on human rights and for repeal of the AFSPA as many young people in the city are still not aware of this Act and human rights violations. There are young people who want to engage in social change, but they do not get a platform and right mentorship in time, due to which we are missing the agents of social change. As an organisation, we believe the young citizens can take their part for social change,� said Baruah.
Suresh Ranjan Goduka of Jeevan Initiative said lack of good mentorship is one prime reasons behind the confusion that is noticed in the youth. He also warned against the addiction of the youth to the virtual world. �The youth of Guwahati are in an advantageous position as they have access to technology. But this exposure has not only led to confusion, but has also created in them an escapist tendency with most of them preferring the virtual world rather than interact with real people,� he said.
As per a survey by Jeevan Initiative, 52 per cent young girls and 38 per cent young boys in Guwahati start their day with Facebook or Whatsapp. As per the survey, 12-17 per cent youth spend more than nine hours on these social networking sites. The survey was conducted as per statistical format with 1,573 random sample size.
�Social detachment is vivid amongst the youth of Guwahati. They are more comfortable in the virtual world and have less time for their nextdoor neighbour,� observed Goduka, adding that this self-imposed alienation in the youth is not a good sign for society.