Are Today's Indian
Youth Lacking Proper Direction?
Bahrain, May 12, 2006
Dr. Prem Joshi
Recently, a few articles have appeared in the print and online media
such as The Hindu, The Hindustan Times etc. regarding the issue
whether today's youth in India lack proper direction (Dishaheen)?
I don't fully concur with those who say that "youth of India
are useless, selfish and lackadaisical and money minded. There are
no role models or youth icons anymore" and also with their
The youth are not useless rather they have great potentials if
they are directed and guided properly. But, they have certainly
developed a tendency to be selfish and interested in making quick
buck in short span of time without much struggle. There is gradual
deterioration in them to show respect to their elders, preservance
to their traditional values, and perservance toward achieving gradual
results. Today, they want to live alone and not with the parents
because of the changing social and economic environment in cities.
Don't say that it depends how they are brought up in their childhood
and what values have been given to them. I can quote thousands of
examples in which children are given the best education, values
and environment. Once they start working and experience the metros
fast and glamorous in the new environment, their thinking and lifestyle
changes. The faulty policies of government towards reservation and
decline in the quality education also contribute to their frustration.
On a larger scale, they become money minded and enjoy luxury. Exceptions
are there. Someone has said about B-School students "The placement
mania makes MBA students regard jobs and salaries as the be-all
and end-all of things. This attitude is inculcated into very bright,
young and impressionable students right from the time they enter
the B-schools. Instead of imbibing a spirit of idealism and developing
a strong desire to change the world for the better, students leave
their B-school after graduation, totally obsessed with making money
and progressing in their career."
It is true that the societal pressures have made the today youth
money-minded and career-focused. However, the brightest students
do not opt for teaching and research. They instead take up lucrative
jobs in multinational firms and end up serving college dropouts
like Bill Gates and Michael Dell.
Our youth is financially growing, advancing in technical skills
but still lagging behind in intellectual growth. Recently, when
my inclusion in the list of outstanding intellectuals of 21st Century
in UK appeared, several well placed ex-students of mine congratulated
me and many of them also remarked "Sir, it seems you have made
a lot of money". I was really shocked to see how today's educated
youth measure the success in life mainly in terms of wealth accumulation.
Regarding the political youth leaders of the contemporary India
like Rahul Gandhi, Sachin Pilot, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Milind Deora
etc. they have still to taste all holy rivers' waters of India.
Once they become matured politicians and hungry for political power,
you may see some of them may be in horrible news like Bofors.
On the top of it, all of them will be carrying forward the family
dynasty of politics. How many of them have really come out into
politics on their own like Lal Bahadur Shastri? With ample resources
and facilities at their disposal, they were groomed right from the
beginning at college life to be the future leaders of this country.
One can say that in the era of globalisation, fast means of communication
and easy access to information and knowledge-based economy, today
youth are getting exposure to several things and becoming more sagacious.
However, due to less exposure to ethical values, a growing tendency
of selfishness, commercialisation of education, an environment of
corrupt practices etc are leaving them behind to have true role
models from whom they get inspired.
In contemporary India, my suggestion would be to get inspired from
Dr. Manmohan Singh, an intellectual, researcher, thinker, missionary
personality, bureaucrat, clean leader, competent administrator,
the brain and father of Indian economic reforms.
His only goal is to take India into the 21st century as an economic
power of the world.