Children's Take On Independence Day
On Aug 15, 2010
Many global think tanks predict that India shall soon become a force to reckon with. The booming Indian economy, our prowess in science and technology, a successful service industry and IT sector - many reasons are pointed out as driving forces behind the change that is to come.
As we celebrate our 64th Independence Day, there’s one crucial driving force to development that still remains underrated - The power of India’s Youth.
Our burgeoning population is not without its advantages. Nearly 41% of India’s population is in the age group of 13 - 35; this makes India the ‘youngest’ country in the world. In this age-bracket, about 142 million (13.83%) are in their teenage (13 - 19 years old). These teenagers are in the threshold of intellectual growth. Neither adults, nor children, they occupy the biggest pie of the population. They are in the moulding process; their thoughts and ideas define what our tomorrow will be. In this age of information, these teenagers are more intelligent than the previous generation. Some of them share their views on the Independance day:
“We should give a thought to the underprivileged as we celebrate the Independence Day,” opines Threya Pillai, an 11th standard student at St. Thomas Residential School. “In today’s world, equality has a limit and differences still stand tall. All what Gandhiji stood for - total equality and freedom of thought still have a long way to go. Caste, creed, economic and gender discrimination are still prevalent,” Threya adds. Keen about space technologies, she wants to contribute to the nation by becoming a space scientist or an astronaut.
Gayathri Krishna, a student of the same school, feels that Indian National Congress is the best political party of the country. “Had it not been for the party, our country wouldn’t have enjoyed the freedom it is enjoying now,” she says. She has a penchant for the Indian Army: “I would like to serve the nation by joining the AFMC (Armed Force Medical College), after school. I feel that the medical needs of our jawans remain neglected. I would like to enlist myself in AFMC and make a difference,” she says.
Aravind R, of Sarvodaya Vidyalaya doesn’t share the same passion. “Normally, August 15th is a weekday, but this time it’s a Sunday. We missed out on an extra holiday,” he sighs. Doesn’t he feel patriotic on the Independence Day? “Yes. But I feel the parades and the celebrations are pointless. They are a huge waste of public money,” he shrugs.
Nandana Nair of Holy Angels Convent has a different view altogether: “I’m still far from being independent. Hence, Independence day is a black day for me,” she quips.
This reporter had a chance to interact with some underprivileged kids, through the NGO - Make A Difference (MAD). A 15-year-old at a shelter home in Plamood, was quizzed about his opinions on the Independence Day. He retorted haughtily: “What shall I do about it?”
That’s a question we should all ask ourselves this Independence Day. What should we do to pay back the nation that has sheltered us?
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