Youthquake in Agriculture in Northeast India

✍~Youths or youngmen in Assam as well as in other States of Northeastern India are vibrant enough with innovative ideas and actions to create a tremor coined as ‘Youthquake’ resulting in a movement of change in cultural, political and social fields. Ideas and inspirations bubble up from the younger generation to explore their new identities and it has the freedom to push boundaries. The term ‘Youthquake’ is a recognition of the revolution launched by the younger generation. Youthquake is defined by Oxford Dictionary as “a significant cultural, political, or social change arising from the actions or influence of young people”.

Here in Assam, young students of different streams in the Colleges of Agriculture, Horticulture, Community (Home) Science, Veterinary, Dairy, Fishery, Sericulture etc under Assam Agricultural University and Central Agricultural University are in full of inspiration and efforts in writing articles packed with applied technological information and know-how for the benefit of farmers and farming in Assam and other northeastern States. The student guest editor of the special student issue of ‘Krishak Bandhu’ eMagazine, a student from Lakhimpur College of Veterinary Science, North Lakhimpur is doing everything at hand along with his supportive student friends and ever-ready to help faculty guides. So, the youthquake has occurred in Assam in the field of Agriculture to bring in a socio-economic change in not only in Assam but also in other States of northeastern India. It is already a success in creating a set of new writers among the student community in the broad-based fields of Agriculture and help them in having a taste of agricultural journalism in real field scenario. A sense of helping attitude will come up among the students for the welfare of the farming communities as a result of such togetherness as writers and readers, and may be some interactions may also come up as consequences.

The term youth describes those people between the ages of 15 and 24; and young people includes both adolescents and youths covering the age span of 10 and 24. However, as a broad term, youth can include people upto ages of 29 or 35. The number of youth in the world between the ages of 15 and 24 is 1.1 billion; and thus youth constitute 18 percent of the global population. Youth and adolescents together, including all those aged 24 years and younger, account for nearly 40 percent of the world’s population. The largest population of youth is concentrated in Asia and the Pacific. Approximately 60 percent of youth live in Asia; about 85 percent of the world’s population of youth live in developing countries. Amazing fact is that youth comprise 41 percent of the world’s unemployed people. India has an unrivalled population of youths, its 65% is 35 or under, and half the country’s population of 1.25 billion people is under 25 years of age.

Tthe Programme of Action (PoA) for Youths of the world negotiated in the International Conference on Population and Development (1994) outlined 10 priority areas of concern for young people out of which education, employment, hunger, poverty and environment are related to agriculture sectors. Our youths are expected to generate innovative ideas and perform works of standard in the interest of farmers and farming in Assam as well as other States in the northeastern India.

In this northeastern part of India, we produce sufficient food materials to be able to celebrate an event of “Bhogali Bihu” in mid-January to eat different items of food with family and friends in togetherness enjoying the warmth of fire at the fireplace or the “Meji” specially made for worshipping the Fire-god. We generally have enough of crops and food materials produced in our fields to enjoy eating in abundance with several recipes; and the surplus quantities are readily marketable. Some enterprising youngmen are doing marketing of some indigenous commodities aggressively in the spirit of Youthquake. This is indeed a good sign. In this season of ampleness, we may strive for Profit and Prestige for Peasants to establish farming as an honourable profession to attract more people to join into it; and an environment of Craze and Glamour can be created by the eagle-eyed youths only to deter despaired farmers in leaving the farming. You youths can only perform in style and show its glitter to maintain the Youthquake.

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