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The youth needs to see politics as a way of life, not just as a career

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The youth must become the torchbearers to free our country from all social and political ills by practicing politics.

Politics is not only about elections, it actually starts there…
Do not think Left. Do not think Right. Think People.

Whether it is the Indian freedom movement, the movement for creation of states or any rights-based, revolutionary movements in our political history, it has been led, sustained and inspired by the selfless sacrifices of the youth. The youth aspires for change in India; change due to which public welfare institutions can be democratised. This is sought so that government reaches people who are disadvantaged and they can lead a dignified life, which is enshrined in our own Constitution.

The youth doesn’t aspire to change rulers, but to change the system which is ruling the country. Politics is not just a career to choose, but is a conscious uninterrupted understanding of society and people’s issues. Without this, the evolution of democratic governance is not possible to ensure the equitable upliftment of society.

The youth should understand the politics of relevance, which is a need of the hour, and not fall into the trap of irrelevant political idealism. The Idealistic Left isn’t relevant for the Idealistic right, and vice versa. Youth politics is a global phenomenon now.

“Step aside respectfully or face defeat in elections.” This is democratic political warning from the youth to old politicians in Nigeria. Emma Oko, the acting president of the New Nigeria Youth Progressive Association (NNYPA) recently also said, “The youths are continuously misused and neglected by the political elite.” This is a cruel truth in the Indian political scenario as well.

It is the youth that does everything to establish, and successfully organise a political party. But what is the representation of the youth in institutions from gram panchayats to Parliament? The youth must become the torchbearers to free our country from all social and political ills by practicing politics, not as a career, or as a service, but as a way of life.

Democracy is not just a political practice, it is a social practice and more importantly a moral practice. Politics can ensure India evolves into a better and healthy democracy.

Vikram Velmala, a student of MIT School of Government, is the winner of the opinion writing contest on the first edition of Democracy Wall. This was in a response to the question asked by ThePrint: Is politics a worthwhile career option for the young and idealistic?

Democracy Wall is a monthly free speech campus initiative organised by ThePrint in collaboration with Facebook.

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  1. India has a majority of young population. But we have very few political leaders from that section of the population. One of the reasons for this is probably the lack of faith of youth in the existing political culture of the country. Perhaps they believe that this culture will never let them see or bring the change they want.

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