Is the future of our nation being nurtured rightly?
A couple of days ago, on 14th of November, the birthday of the first Prime Minister of India, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, was celebrated as Children’s Day throughout the country. Pandit Nehru had great love for children and was lovably known as Chacha Nehru by the children. It was his aim that the children, who are the future of the nation, be shaped and nurtured in the best possible way to make the nation strong in an ultimate sense.
But today, even after 65 years of independence, the plight of children belonging to the poor strata of the society is pitiable & miserable. Taking a stroll on The Mall, Shimla, poor children can be seen following the tourists, especially the foreigners, with an aim that they would give them some money. Begging on the Shimla Mall Road is a common scenario.
Especially the vagabonds hailing from Bihar, Rajasthan & Uttar Pradesh are compelled to force their children to beg because they themselves are not able to make the two ends meet for the survival of the family. Children, in India, are considered to be an asset and not a liability, especially in poor families.
The Himachal Pradesh government says that 99.87% children in the 9-14 age group in the state go to school daily. Either the data requires revision or it may be possible that the govt. census includes only the children hailing from well-to-do or mediocre families of the state.
Child labour too is a common sight at any local dhaba or tea-stall. But, what is the solution? Just guarantying Right to Education, Providing Free School Uniforms and Free Mid-day meals, cannot solve the problem. The best way to make a tree grow better is to strengthen its roots. The parents of these children should be provided with adequate income resources so that they don’t need to not compelling to force their children to beg.
Parents are like gods for their children. No parent ever wishes for his children to remain illiterate till the time bare survival is not a challenge. It’s the circumstances, born as a result of imbalanced economy of our country, that compel these innocent souls to beg for their survival. The corruption in our government has hindered the flow of money as a great part of money is locked inside the lockers of the secret bank accounts as the black money. That plays a great role in keeping a great number of kids devoid of education and a normal grooming. Unfortunately, it’ll remain the same or might get worse if the citizens didn’t learn to question the government and their representatives they had elected.
Contribution: Er. Vishal Sharma, a HW Community Member