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‘The youth is the future’: just an exploitative slogan

 Government representatives frequently remember to emphasise the phrase "the kids are the future of any country" in their public statements. The involvement of youth in the formulation and execution of policy is a top priority for development organisations such as the United Nations, IGOs, and local organisations. Similar to this, the media places a strong emphasis on how young people will define and mould the nation's future. Political party manifestos frequently make mention of the youth's potential for leadership. In essence, every performer presents the kid as a resource with unrealized potential.

However, a deeper look at the options that are actually available to young people indicates that most of what is offered is simply exaggeration. In actuality, these actors don't care about the youth and don't make policies that reflect it. They just see the kids as a tool to further their own vested interests.

Political parties are well aware, for instance, that young people will have a significant influence on how future elections turn out. This is clear from the 48 million people who fall into the 18 to 30 year age range and the 36 million who fall into the 30 to 40 year range.

The youth are also a powerful force that can energise political rallies and expertly craft and spread a political narrative among the populace. Political parties therefore create strategies to draw young people to them. This is accomplished through creating memorable phrases that evoke feelings of opportunity for employment, patriotism, and pride in one's country.

Youth are seen by think tanks and development organisations as a great way to entice financing from donors. However, once cash is obtained, they hire consultants who can launch lobbying campaigns with creative slogans. For instance, discussing technology, the Internet of Things, and e-commerce is in right now. Nothing is wrong with supporting technological development or urging young people to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the Fourth Industrial Revolution. But disregard for regional customs.

Let's begin by discussing the state of the educational system. Unfortunately, Pakistan has a 62.3% overall literacy rate. This indicates that there are 86.3 million ignorant people in the nation. In addition, the school system does not enrol 22.8 million pupils. Similarly, millions of kids attend madrassas. Although the Constitution expressly promises that the State shall fund every child's education under Articles 37-B and 25-A, this has regrettably not been the case.

"The State must be responsible for the eradication of illiteracy and the provision of free and compulsory education up to secondary level, within lowest possible time," reads Article 37-B of the Pakistani Constitution.

The State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children between the ages of five and sixteen in the manner provided by law, according to Article 25-A, which deals with the right to education.

Unfortunately, by privatising education instead, the public sector is abdicating its role. This represents a flagrant breach of Pakistan's Constitution. Private educational institutions are expanding rapidly as a result of policies that are friendly to privatization.

The Pakistan Education Statistics Report states that 22.7 million pupils, or 44% of all students, are enrolled in private institutions. It is astounding to learn that 44% of youngsters are housed in 38% of private institutions. Even though private schools and colleges are more expensive than public ones, parents nonetheless prefer sending their kids there. This illustrates how little faith people have in governmental institutions. And the state should be really concerned about this.

Another worry for the country is the quality of education, as formal educational institutions, for instance, make no attempt to give their pupils market-relevant skills. As a result, they are graduating students with few or no life skills.

The absence of institutions for professional and skill development is crucial. The private sector makes up 56% of all skill-development and vocational institutions in the nation, according to the Education Statistics report. Additionally, the government is unable to persuade the corporate sector to uphold its duties in line with the real spirit of Pakistan's Apprenticeship Ordinance.

These elements increase the cost of skill acquisition for the average person and contribute to a decrease in the creation of human capital. Pakistan is hence 144th out of 173 nations in the human capital index.

Due to these issues, the vast majority of educated youth are unable to locate chances that will enable them to earn respectable livings. Because of this anger with the lack of economic prospects, several slogans that exploit ethnicity, sub-nationalism, group identity, and religion become popular.

In conclusion, Pakistan has to comprehend that if the necessary steps are not done, the young, which is currently viewed as an advantage, would eventually turn into a significant problem.

Fifth generation warfare (FGW) has become more prevalent, which has made things worse. Youth is both a major perpetrator and sufferer of FGW. Youth who lack education and skills will become a serious threat to national security. Pakistan must act as though a war is at hand in order to stop this process.

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