Youth is a major contributor to the state’s overall development and progress. The youth is viewed as the future of any society and a country.
In Pakistan, out of 220 million people, 64 percent people are below the age of 30, which makes the country one of the largest young populations in the world.
This can be turned into the greatest dividend for Pakistan if capitalized. Pakistan’s youth has immense potential, which can make our country politically, socially, and economically strong.
The youth of Pakistan is now taking an active part in the economic and political development of the country.
The majority of the youth is part of the political setup: they are joining state institutions such as the armed forces and other civilian departments in order to strengthen the economic discourse of the country.
This is a good omen from a futuristic point of view of Pakistan. Likewise, Pakistan is extending all possible support to the young generation for the promotion of their active role in society.
Due to the idealist and post-truth approach of some Pakistani politicians such as Imran Khan, we are living in a most intense period of social unrest, rapid economic, social, climatic, and catastrophic changes, and individualism and identity crisis.
Severe disparities and poor political and socioeconomic conditions may motivate frustrated and deprived young individuals to participate in violent and extremist activities.
This trend is initiated by the political party of Imran Khan, who claims to have massive support from the youth: which is a mere myth, having no solid base.
Khan’s volatile political campaign has brought society to a point where people are losing patience, with social and cultural norms.
They are viewing all the developments through the prism of politics. Unfortunately, Imran Khan and his party Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf’s (PTI) malicious approach is dangerous for institutional legacy of Pakistan.
They are trying to politicize state institutions including the armed forces for mere political gains, which is not in the interest of anyone.
The major civilian and military departments of Pakistan are working tirelessly to spread social, and political awareness within our society in order to counter the growing radicalization and politically oriented interests of masses.
These departments are conducting this exercise in the larger interests of the country. For instance, Pakistan Army is leading this campaign by promoting soft image and cultural values of the country.
To promote harmony among different societies of the country, Army has been conducting various social and cultural programs in different provinces in which people of all ethnic communities participate and get to know the cultural and social values of different groups.
Not only this, the armed forces are undertaking various other programs to accommodate youth in setting up their future goals.
Likewise, civilian government with the help of Army, is conducting various capacity building seminars to make people aware how to serve Pakistan in order to boost the economic and social values.
The bonding between Pakistani youth and Armed Forces is increasing massively and people are ready to sacrifice their lives for our armed forces.
Unfortunately, a targeted campaign can be seen in the recent past against our state institutions, especially the armed forces where some paid political agents tried hard to malign our brave forces for mere political interests.
That campaign was part of the cyber war against Pakistan. However, the brave Pakistani youth has briefly defeated that by promoting the positive and real face of our forces and other law enforcement agencies.
No political party can harm the bonding between youth and the armed forces. This trend is in fact increasing at a massive level. More and more young graduates are now aspiring to join our armed force to serve this nation.
If political parties continue to malign state institutions for political gains, and the right strategies and policies are not put in place today to meaningfully engage the youth in the community, deliver quality education, and secure future livelihoods, the biggest workforce will be at risk of becoming marginalized, intolerant, vulnerable to social ills and unable to contribute towards the broader development of society.
The armed forces and other civilian institutions are playing an active role in the development of the country. Now, it’s the responsibility of political parties too, to play their part in the development of the country.
They must think beyond their individual-based political interests for the betterment of the country. It is a well-established fact that no country can excel without the support of political parties and youth.
So, our political leadership must show some maturity and provide our youth with more and more employment and educational opportunities. This will also help our country to eradicate the menace of extremism and radicalization from our society.
To conclude, this demographic variation can have explosive socioeconomic and political consequences until the people are given equal access to health, education, and livelihood and their feeling of deprivation is addressed. So, the onus is on the politicians of Pakistan, now.
*The writer is an Islamabad-based regular contributor.
**The Diplomatic Insight does not take any position on issues and the views represented herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Diplomatic Insight and its staff.