Post Mortem

2020 global mission: People are means and ends

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 1/11/2020 11:02:08 AM IST

 As we entered into the Second Decade of the 21st Century we are going to face a mixed baggage—challenges and possibilities. 2020 mission agenda for the decade will have to be something different and yet in congruence of the reality that people across the world faced in the previous decade and are going to face in 2020 and beyond. It is imperative that we should take into account the happenings and episodes of the previous decade while working on the mission agenda. It should not be another replication of the past decade. Year 2019, however, was explosive, volatile and erratic and yet defining as the whole world witnessed a wave of protests within countries and between continents. 

People have gradually been losing their hope and live in a state of shock. Nonetheless, somewhere from unknown quarters a ray of hope keeps flickering. The youth across the globe raised their voice against those who throttled and heckled the innocent citizens. Undoubtedly the major players to dominate this decade are the youth. The youth of the world have come of age and are going to take the centre-stage of the national and global affairs. It became amply clear and evident and is hoped that this decade belongs to them. The protests that occupied the capitals and major cities of the world grabbed the attention of the comity of nations and people around the world were climate change, corruption and extra-constitutional jurisdiction.

The climate movement questioned the irresponsible global leaders for ransacking the natural resources for their selfish motives. While on the other, the teens—the future of the world occupied the podium of the UN dared the world leaders of having betrayed their future and also blamed them for having given all false promises and fake narratives. Leaders were stunned and had to sit and forced to listen to them patiently. The power dynamics totally shifted since then where the youth in different parts of the country occupied the streets on a number of issues that hit them ranging from employment, economy, freedom of religion and speech, human rights, refugees, migration and host of others. 

In their expression there were moderation, anger, farsightedness, reason, temperance, justness and care for the planet. The impending problems--environmental, economic and political challenges the people of the world face have gripped the world in complex ways and thus posing numerous challenges. All these have further depleted the hopes and thus annoyed them. The young world keep asking their leaders who govern the world: Can they assure a livable planet to the present and future generations because they pitch their narratives filled with false promises, age-old traditions, myths and fakes tweets. 

The global youth want arguments and rhetoric based on reason, science and facts, and certainly not tall unfulfilling promises and superficial claims.  As there were hardly any positive answers and problem-solving measures the long wait of the youth reached a point which turned out to be uprisings against them. The political class either received or guaranteed their subjects better living, meaningful existence and quality of life for the present and the future generations’, large waves of protests right across the globe blossomed. Out of many, the primary issues that hit the world in totality have been forced displacement, throttling of democratic voices and undemocratic rule. 

Unlike the older generations, the young protesters are unwilling to compromise and not afraid to defy; prepared to face consequences; outraged by structural and systemic inequalities. Their patience came to a boiling point and so started their defiance and resisted openly the vital issues such as crony capitalism, religious fundamentalism, populism, patriarchy and homophobia. With their culture of defiance and brave occupation of the main streets and by-lanes in tens and thousands unfolded a path of prosperity and freedom for all. It clearly conveys a message that the dominant narratives are getting punctured; populist measures are gradually waning and rhetoric hardly works. 

The current ruling dispensation is shaken and rattled because the young India wants something new, an appealing approach and political lexicon towards those disagree and protest. Old narratives have failed to inspire and makes people to listen and get convinced. Citizens gather in massive numbers across India, devised posters with street plays within the non-violent and democratic framework. India is increasingly becoming highly centralized rule wherein the police, paramilitary and the state machinery posits dangerously over-extended structure which the Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi warned against. 

Gandhi opposed on the following basis that “Centralization as system is inconsistent with a non-violent structure of society … centralization cannot be sustained and defended without adequate force.” What he said some time ago is relevant and more apt to the Indian scenario. Centralized State tends to consolidate its power by abetting and normalizing violence between citizens—though it is abnormal but a new normal in India. Those who control the State use the state machinery for the promotion and promotion of power. Furtherance of power in recent times is only by terrorizing the people in brute manner.

Democracy is such as amazing framework that accommodates those who secured fewer seats or more seats to form the governments both at the Centre as well as in the states. Minority or majority though works on the principle of numbers be it bigger or smaller, its basis is premised on one person, one value and one vote. In democracy each and everyone is considered as equals. No one is above and no one is below—all are equal and no distinction on any counts. The young world taught lessons to older generation and leaders of the world that the youth is watching and knows when to intervene and how to intervene. It’s their world and their future and so their hopes and aspirations be respected and they shall not tolerate their world being robbed. Representatives who have been duly elected to represent the electorates and to make the world livable and sustainable are by and large engaged in looting the global resources and accumulating wealth in disproportionate ways. What Edmund Burke long ago said fits well to the current scenario: “Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgment; and he betrays instead of serving you if he sacrifices it to your opinion.” It is apt to the present as 2019 was clouded with “too much of government” and “too less of governance”.

The youth of the world resolved that “2020 should be the year of the citizens and governance”. If the opinion of the citizens is not given due attention and importance by their elected representatives, then the citizens have no other option or choice, except occupying the main lanes and by lanes. In such a context-specific the third decade of the 21st Century should put people at the centre who are the means and the ends.  

Dr. John Mohan Razu

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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