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Democracy is a buzz word for our political system. But is it really so? Is it democracy that a nation where a majority of population is below 40 elects a majority of people above 60 to power? Are we really satisfied with the way our country is governed? Should it not bothr us that at the age people generally take retirement and rest our politician actually become eligible to be at the helm of affairs? Why is so that people below 40 is considered as Political Kids? The country desperately need some young leaders who personify energy, enthusiasm, morality and diligence. India needs such leadership which work with innovative ideas and fulfill the demands of each and every sector and age group. No doubt we have progress a lot in last 66 year but the development pace would have been completely different had some young torchbearers led process of development. This study is concerned with the participation of young people in Politics and Decision making of a country, role of youth in election, effectiveness of youth participation. The study will also put light on the issue that Why youth participation is important and what is its need? To go through the topic first we need to understand the basic concept of the study. Keywords: Democracy, Youth, Politics

What is Youth? When we speak of young people, we are actually referring to a diverse and highly heterogeneous group in society with a complex variety of identities and socio-economic as well as educational backgrounds. Youth is best understood as a period of transition from the dependence of childhood to adulthoods independence and awareness of our interdependence as members of a community. Youth is a more fluid category than a fixed age-group. However, age is the easiest way to define this group, particularly in relation to education and employment. Therefore youth is often indicated as a person between the age where he/she may leave compulsory education, and the age at which he/she finds his/her first employment. This latter age limit has been increasing, as higher levels of unemployment and the cost of setting up an independent household puts many young people into a prolonged period of dependency. Age group of youth differ for different purposes like study, employment, etc.. For this study we consider the age group of 20-40. This is the age group in which people are full of energy, enthusiasm and can contribute a lot in nation building and decision making.

What is Politics? Politics is a word taken from a Greek word Politicos which means relating to citizens. It is the practice and theory of influencing other people on a civic or individual level. More narrowly, it refers to achieving and exercising positions of governance organized control over a human community, particularly a state. A variety of methods are employed in politics, which include promoting its own political views among people, negotiation with other political subjects, making laws, and exercising force, including warfare against adversaries. Politics is exercised on a wide range of social levels, from clans and tribes of traditional societies, through modern local government, companies and institutions up to sovereign state, to international level. No one is born a good citizen; no nation is born a democracy. Rather, both are processes that continue to evolve over a lifetime. Young people must be included from birth. A society that cuts itself off from its youth severs its lifeline; it is condemned to bleed to death. Kofi Annan, Former Secretary-General of the United Nations

History of Youth participation in Indian Politics India has a great political history.

Whether there is Effective Youth Participation Youth participation is always a matter of concern in India where more than half of population is youth. Youth have always played a vital role in development of our country. From the time of independence to till now there is up and downs in the practical particpation of youth in the main political wing of the country. One of the bad customs of Indian politics is the custom of hierarchy. At the time of independence Gandhi ji called upon the youth to participate actively in the freedom movement. Young leaders likes Nehru came to his reckoning and led the movement. But this is not the case now. Nowadays we have only a handful of young leaders like Rahul Gandhi, Sachin Pilot, Varun Gandhi etc, but they are in the political scenario because they belong to influential political families. It is next to impossible to find a young leader with no political family background in the furor of Politics. There can be two reasons for this deplorable scene of Indian politics. One may be that the youth today are not interested in actively participating in the political field. They are content with what they are doing and how the country is being governed. But this reason seems to hold no ground seeing the discontent shown by the youngsters towards cases like reservation, Jessica lal murder case etc. The youth of modern India are aware of the problems facing our country and the world at large. Given a chance they would be ready to change the political condition of the country for better. Second reason may be that young people are not given opportunities to prove themselves claiming that they are not equipped with experience to participate actively in the governance of the country. This reason seems to be more logical seeing the monopoly of old leaders in almost all the major political parties of the country. Old people should realize that proper development can take place only when they make way for younger people to take control of the activities. There are few things which need to be clarified. One that youngsters do not mean people who are 20 years old with no experience at all. Youth in this context is meant to refer people in their 30s or early 40s with a good mix of energy and experience. Two, it is not intended to mean that old people should leave the political scene and rest. What is wanted is that they should be there but for guidance because they are treasures of invaluable experience. There are a few things which I would like to suggest. There should be a retirement age for politicians as well which may be around 65 years. There should also be some educational qualification for politicians. How can we give those illiterates the key to our country whom we cannot give the key to our house? People with serious criminal background should not be allowed to contest elections. As for the youth of our country, they can contribute in more ways than just contesting elections. Much can be done in areas like educating people, raising awareness about various social ills, and many other areas. We can just wish that the next time we go to vote we find more names of youngsters who can make our country a better place to live in.

Role of Youth in Nation Building India is a big country with a large population. It is estimated that Indias present population is about 120 crores. Those between the age of 20 to 40 form more than 50 percent of the total population. For our purposes we count them all as the youth. These comprise students, employees, workers, farmers and persons from various professions including the unemployed educated or otherwise. These young people constitute a large force. They are energetic, enthusiastic and full of zeal. Unfortunately a large number of them are without any direction. It is dangerous to allow them to remain idle, as it would increase their frustration. A large number of them are capable, devoted, dedicated idealists and are fond of work. Their frustration is a result of their being without any worthwhile job. It is a great national wastage if these energetic hands and brains are not provided with some sort of work to meet the needs of the nation. No country can permit such wastage. What is needed is that they should be taken into confidence and given a directionsome constructive work. This massive manpower can do wonders provided its enthusiasm is harnessed for development work. Indian youth have never lagged behind when called upon to meet a challenge. It is for the national leaders to play their part by mobilizing their abilities and providing them with a direction. Let there be no doubt about their strength, power and capability. Their counterparts have changed the governments in their own countries. It was the youth of Indonesia who overthrew President Soekarno. The massive youth movement in Czechoslovakia succeeded against the military invasion on their country. The recent history of Cambodia, Egypt, France and Syria provide evidences of their invincible force. Even in our own country before partition the youth played a very inspiring role in the freedom movement. After independence too their power has changed the fate of several state governments in the recent past. If we exclude the youth, the rest of the population of India will comprise old people and children. They cannot be called the real manpower of the nation. So we may say that if the youth of the country are not enthused to devote their energies to the task of national reconstruction, the whole manpower of the nation is being wasted.

The task of nation building is enormous and can be divided into many phases and compartments. It has some work for everybody. All the young people may be involved in this work. They may be assigned jobs according to their capacity and capability. First of all they should be made to understand a specific project and its importance to the society and also the part they are expected to play to make it a success. They are sure to work hard for its fulfillment. They have the resources, guts and imagination to explain it to the people in detail and make it a success, They will feel more than satisfied by the realization that they have been assigned a role in the nationbuilding efforts. This realization will encourage them to put their best into it. There is another factor: whatever is done by the government for nation-building affects the whole societythe young and the old alike. At least the former think that they are being denied the right of their participation in that task. It would be prudent to associate them with all such programmes as concern them. Such a step would satisfy their ego.

It is not very difficult to mobilise the youth for nation-building. Once these programmes have succeeded in firing their imagination, more than enough resources of energy will be forthcoming to achieve the targets. And once they are genuinely involved, and their interest in these programmes is aroused, they would be prepared to give their best to their quick implementation. There can be a large number of schemes, projects and programmes wherein their total involvement will bring quicker and better results. They can play a pivotal role in the socioeconomic regeneration of the society. There are many evil practices in our society. If the youth is associated in a drive against these practices, the results may be much more satisfactory. There may be schemes connected with the raising of the level of production in agriculture. The youth may be assigned the job of dissemination of knowledge for better farming, new techniques and proper use of fertilisers and pesticides. What is required is that they may be given adequate training in these tasks. In a drive against economic offences, their energy may be used in moulding public opinion in favour of eradication and prevention of such offences. The youth may work successfully as an arm of the administration in the implementation of governmental programmes aimed at fighting against these and other maladies. Another field wherein their energy may be gainfully employed is the task of adult education and universalisation of education. Being given a little dose of incentive encouragement and support, they may take over the great responsibility of fulfilling the targets fixed by the government. Their services may similarly be utilised for preventing and fighting offences like smuggling, black-marketing and hoarding. They can at least create public opinion against those who indulge in such unfair practices. Cooperatives may be encouraged, through them for creating parallel marketing facilities to render the antisocial practices ineffective. What is needed is that we repose faith in their capacity and capability. By enlisting the cooperation and involvement of the massive youth army, the government will on the one hand be successful in mobilising idle man-power, and on the other hand these young people will be saved from falling a prey to such elements, as utilise them for their own narrow selfish ends. By employing these persons in some socially useful work, the possibilities of demonstrations, violence, unrest and turmoil will be largley minimised. It is therefore, in the national interest that these young men are attracted towards some sort of developmental activities. Such involvement of the young people would generate a sense of pride and self-confidence in them, provided it is accorded adequate appreciation. It would raise tfieir morale as well. At the same time the sense of patriotism and of being useful to the society would inhibit them from going astray. It would also help develop in them a nationalist outlook. Such a step would speed up the process of socio-economic regeneration and democratic decentralisation. Our government spends a large amount of money on a number of organisations that are given charge of implementation of various schemes and programmes concerning national development. Involvement of the youth and their organisations would cost less in terms of money as well. The young people may be inspired and encouraged to adopt villages or other suitable units of operation, where they may cancentrate on the improvement of physical and social environment. This will lead to socio-economic progress and help to channelise the energies, enthusiasm and idealism of the youth in the task of nation-building. It is certain that the youth will make full use of the diverse opportunities offered to them. If would make the task of nation-building easier and quicker.

Need of Youth in Politics India is the largest democracy in the world. In order to run this huge conglomerate, India needs mass support, intellectuals, fresh and experienced leaders and obviously new and innovative political game plans. In this twenty first century, every country is on the verge of becoming a rat race. Globalization and free economy have made the path to progress and success. It's time to mobilize and utilize the mass workforce. It's time to plan the development chart and chalk out the social and economic reformation. India has a very complex and matured political background. There are several political parties with different agendas. Most of political parties are run by veteran politicians. There political activities and party influence have made the politics synonymous with power. Many politicians take advantage of this power and apply it for their own interest. This has created a wave of corruption deep rooted in the origin of Indian politics. The system has become rigid and matured. No-one wants to take the risk of changing the way the system work. The ultimate victim are the mass population. The so called political heroes are unable to meet the expectations of common man in India. But this is the time to bring change. A nation needs an aimed and strategic direction to attain its growth. India also shouldnt be behind in the race. Young and educated people form the backbone of a growing nation. Since they are young their minds are fresh and innovative. They are more prone to take risks and accept challenges. They are less vulnerable to corruption. Therefore their work is inevitable for the growth of a nation. Their spirit and courage can contribute to the development of the society. Today, India needs the youth to come into politics and take this as an opportunity to work for the system. Starting from year old caste system to poverty, there are several key issues that need to be focused on in India. The most important step toward progress is rural development. A combined, dedicated and honest plan is required to attain this target and thats where India needs its fresh and young educated minds to come forward.