Youth in Politics

If I were asked to describe ‘Politics’ a few years back, this is what I would’ve said- Politics is a quagmire of dirt, corruption and power. For a government official to a top bureaucrat, money is the end and the means. Politics meant getting your hands soiled, without achieving much. However, the situation today is fast changing. The faceless anger with current proceedings and motivation to make a constructive change in the society has found manifestation in youth movements, young MPs and Ministers.

This change has largely been brought about by the media, the internet and an attitudinal shift in populace of India. The media has empowered the youth- it has given them a potent platform by means of which they can relate to thousands of Indians, influence them with their speeches, enthuse them with their passion for change and inspire them to rise against injustice. With growing awareness, this freedom and scale of expression has the potential to directly culminate into greater participation of the common man, and often results in altered preferences for political candidates.

5 years ago, 75% turnout for voting meant a miraculous day. But today – it is norm! Such is the power of the ‘idiot box’. The internet has increased the ease, speed and effectiveness of mobilisation. It takes less than 2 minutes to make a page on facebook, 1. 5 minutes to initiate a protest across the net- and less than 1 min to get one lakh people to support it. And most importantly, it is the very factions of once dispassionate population that have come out in support of youth in politics.

Parents are no longer wary of their child’s future in politics. The youth themselves have realised that the power that politics places in their hands is unparalleled, and a single ‘straight’ move can set many wrongs right. Some of my closest friends, interested in the development sector, want to join politics. India, as a nation is also evolving. Today, it is the second most favoured destination for international investment. In general, for a country to prosper, it needs to have transparent laws and a responsible government.

In the era of International Economic Darwinism, there is a pressure on India to perform- which can only be fulfilled by a cleaner political leadership. And the involvement of youth in the Indian polity is seen as a step towards achieving this competitive edge- the youth will, hopefully, infuse India with vigour and vitality, efficiency and accountability, and sow the seeds of transparency. The youth today are not only willing to participate in politics, but are also the need of the hour.