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 The Youth Icon: Swami Vivekananda  

Date of Publish - Wednesday, 10th January 2018
igniting_minds

The Youth Icon: Swami Vivekananda

Rejoice Millennials! It’s the celebration of us. Yes, a day solely dedicated to us by the Government of India since the declaration of 12th January as National Youth Day in the year of 1984. And while this sense of validation is fulfilling, it is important to note that the day falls on the birth anniversary of none other than Swami Vivekananda. It is but natural to search for the reason behind this fortunate coincidence. Why him? Ask why not instead. Swami Vivekananda is the ideal poster boy for the youth of today’s India, a youth that is definitely more aware, capable and resourceful. His message of unity, spirituality, empowerment and nationalism resonates with the ideals of tolerance, equality, perseverance and modernity.

The day is celebrated across the country’s schools and colleges. Parades and processions are organized, speeches are given on the shared values of our nation builders like Mahatma Gandhi, Swami Vivekananda, etc., and various other activities like quizzes, group discussions, and essay writing competitions too take place, with the aim of bringing the youth together, to make them ‘think, strive and hustle better.’ Every year, a theme is decided upon by the Government of India.

In the last few years, it has ranged from Celebrating Diversity in Unity (2012) and Youth for Drugs Free World (2014), to Youth for Clean, Green and Progressive India (2015) and Youth for Digital India (2017). The theme for 2018 is yet to be decided. This year the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India is organizing the first Mega National Youth Parliament as part of the National Youth Festival 2018.

Young dynamic individuals between ages 18 and 25 are eligible to take part as representatives of various states and work towards finding a sustainable and inclusive policy solutions to the myriad of problems.

India is being looked upon by the world as the next big power. With the advantage of its young demographic dividend, India is expected to soar to new economic and political heights. Our country has always held an important place in terms of leaving its cultural mark on the World. But it wasn’t just religion or art and architecture that were the cause of this but also the great thinkers like Swami Vivekananda whose take on indispensable aspects of life like caste and religion, education, health and spirituality was like a breath of fresh air. May it be his condemnation of bigotry and sectarianism in his Chicago speech in 1893, his emphasis on empowerment of youth, or, the establishment of Ramakrishna Math and Mission, all reflect his understanding of his country and the larger world, which were at war both inside and out.

The aim of celebrating the day is to remind the youth of a young man like them, who endeavoured and succeeded in questioning and redefining the values that this great nation stands for, an aim our youth aspires to accomplish.

 

 

Author:
Khyati Jain IMIA043

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