Three-Day Student Youth Parliament by ABVP in Delhi was the first of its kind effort to channelise youth power for nation building.
In order to convert the youth as change agents in their respective areas of living or working, the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) organised a three day Student Youth Parliament in New Delhi from October 1 to 3. Students from all over the country participated in the Parliament and deliberated upon the various challenges the country is facing and also how they can contribute in their solution.
First day of the Parliament was dedicated to discuss the problems of Vanvasi youth. Union Minister of Tribal Affairs Jual Oram inaugurated the session which witnessed the presence of 308 Vanvasi youth including 39 girls from 18 states. Shri Oram said the Vanvasis and non-Vanvasis are part of the same society and there should be no discrimination between them. He called upon the youth to contribute in nation building while preserving their respective languages, cultures and values. The session prominently discussed the level of education, employment and skill development in Vanvasi areas.
ABVP general secretary Shreehari Borikar said the ABVP realises the immense power of youth to transform dreams into reality. Today, the ABVP dreams of the developed yet environment-friendly Vanvasi areas and participation of Vanvasi youth in the mainstream national life. Shri Prafulla Akant, incharge of Vanvasi affairs in the organisation, said the Vanvasi Youth Parliament is a right step taken at the right time. He said the youth came from distant parts including the Naxal-hit areas like Dantewada.
On second day i.e. October 2, 'Girls' Parliament' was organised which was attended by over 300 girls from 33 Prants. The Parliament broadly discussed the issues like education, security, health, dignity and self-dependence. Inaugurating the session Union Minister for Women & Child Development Smt Meneka Gandhi exhorted the girls to fight against injustice. She said the women should always come forward for their rights. She said during the last one year the Central Government has taken various bold steps for women empowerment. She said the recruitment of 1,400 women in Delhi Police is a welcome step, which the other states should follow. She said there should be 33 per cent representation of women in Police forces, and a panic button in mobile phones with GPS connectivity so that in emergency they can use that. She pointed out that the government would recruit one Special Woman Police Officer (SWPO) in each village, who can work as a link between police and women of the particular area. ABVP’s girls’ incharge, Mamata Yadav, urged the girls to come out from their houses and lead in their respective fields. Smt Asha Devi, mother of Nirbhaya, also addressed the girls in the second session.
Third day of the Parliament i.e. October 3, discussed the issues concerning the north-eastern students. It was basically to commemorate 50 years of ABVP’s initiative, Students’ Experience in Interstate Living (SEIL). Over 150 student leaders from North-Eastern states, excluding Nagaland, attended the session. Representatives from Bodo, Seinraij, Koch, Jaintia, Hajong, Jamatiya, Chakma, Rava, Missing, Dimasa, Karbi, Tiwa, Khasi, Kachari, Wancho, Nocte, Ollo, Tangsa, Singpho, Adi, Tagin, Shertukpen communities attended the Parliament.
Inaugurating the Parliament, Union Minister of State for Youth and Sports Sarbananda Sonowal acknowledged the potential of young Bharat. He highlighted the steps taken by the NDA government to enhance the opportunities for North-East students. He named a national young leaders programme, which aims at participation of youth in local governance. He said time has come when we should start working on solutions and ABVP has already worked on it and has performed well. He further said ‘we should look at North-East region as a region with potential for growth and should not look down upon it as a backward region’.
ABVP organising secretary Shri Sunil Ambekar said the ABVP’s relations with the North-East are not based on business rather at heart. He assured the ABVP would always be at the disposal of the North-Eastern students living anywhere in the country. He said the aim of the Parliament is to initiate positive deliberations and find solutions to the problems. Earlier, Shri Hari Borikar acknowledged the underlying quest for development of North-East Bharat in the working of various student organisations active in the region. He also traced the role of SEIL in bridging the gap between North-East and other parts of the country.
In the second session Shri Atul Kulkarni presented a holistic picture of development in North-East region and traced the challenges for development of the region, Joint Secretary of Ministry of North-East region Shri AM Singh also highlighted the steps taken by the Ministry in the North-East region. He said 10 per cent of all the plans and funds from Central Government are dedicated solely to the development of roads, air, power and telecom. He said the government is also seriously working to improve the level of education in the region, where teachers from rest of Bharat will be asked to give time to the region for the training of teachers. Joint Secretary of Ministry of Tourism, Shri Ram Kiran spoke on the ‘Swadesh Darshan’, an initiative taken up by the government to tap the opportunities in the field of tourism.
Shri RN Ravi focused on the root causes of disputes among various communities of North-East. He said the history of the region was forgotten and was distorted by British and subsequently by the respective governments of Bharat after Independence. Shriniwasji said the Parliament is going to be a milestone in the progress of North-East. He highlighted the role of SEIL in bridging the gaps between North-East and the rest of India.
Speaking at the concluding session Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju highlighted the outcome of the ‘Act East Policy’. He said at the time of globalisation we cannot live in isolation. Therefore there is a need to open the heart and boundaries. He said the people who had taken up guns are now coming back in the mainstream due to the initiatives by Central Government. He also stressed the need to address the cultural gap. Pramod Kumar