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Youth Migration and Its Effects on Indian Economy

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‘INDIA , IS A SLEEPING GIANT.ONE DAY IT WILL WAKE UP AND ATTAIN WORLD GLORY’ These were the words said by SWAMI VEVEKANAND and indeed today the INDIAN ECONOMY is on the brink of an uproar. India is today one of the six fastest growing economies of the world. The country is ranked fourth in terms of Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) in 2010. The business and regulatory environment is evolving and moving towards constant -improvement. A highly talented, skilled and English-speaking human resource base forms its backbone. The Indian economy has transformed into a vibrant, rapidly growing consumer market, comprising over 300 million strong middle class with increasing purchasing power. India provides a large market for consumer goods on the one hand and imports capital goods and technology to modernize its manufacturing base on the other.

An abundant and diversified natural resource base, sound economic, industrial and market fundamentals and highly skilled and talented human resources, make India a destination for business and investment opportunities with an assured potential for attractive returns. Far-reaching measures introduced by the government over the past few years to liberalize the Indian market and integrate it with the global economy are widely acknowledged. The tenth five year plan document targets a healthy growth rate of 8% for the Indian economy during the plan period 2002 – 07. India has an extremely diverse economy which includes many areas in agriculture, crafts, major industries and numerous miscellaneous services. The leading economic growth vehicle in India would be it’s multitude of services, however two-thirds of the workforce in India earn their income through agriculture. The labour force of India is estimated to be around 482.2 million people with 57% in agriculture, 17% in industry, and 23% in other services.

In recent times, India has also capitalised on its large number of highly educated people who are fluent in the English language to become a major exporter of software services, financial services and software engineers. Though, India has one of the fastest growing economies in the world it is characterized by population bursts, poverty, unemployment and child labour. These rising issues have become a major concern for the Indian economy but yet have proven to bring a raise in the Indian economy for the 2011 year. This economic burst will not be sustainable for the Indian economy in the approaching years. One of the major problem ofour growing economy has been the burden of Population which has in-turn given birth to problems like unemployment, poverty etc. Unemployment is not only a social problem it is an individual problem also. An unemployed person loses self- respect and faces a discouraging and a disappointing outlook.

Unsteady employment undermines the workers physique, deadens his mind, weakens his ambition, destroys his capacity for continuous sustained endeavour, induces a liking for idleness and self – indulgence, saps self- respect and the sense of responsibility, impairs technical skills, weakens nerve and will power, creates a tendency to blame others for failure, saps his courage, prevents thrift, and hope of family advancement, destroys a workman’s feeling that he is taking care of his family, sends him to work worried, underfed, plunges him in debt. Young persons, who finish their education, find it very painful to join the army of unemployed persons. Many of them do not get any outlet for their creative energy, and their enthusiasm and vigour dies down as days pass on. This is a stage when a person who has completed his education starts looking for better employment opportunities outside the realms of his motherland.

This concept has been termed as migration of youth or youth migration by many economists. Youth migrating to different countries with India as its source of origin can be a very dangerous proposition for the future of our country. The young and bubbling pool of talent bursting with energy starts helping other economies to grow rather than putting their energies to full utilization in their own country. Whenever we are talking about economic development, we cannot ignore young generation. Youth have been recognized as ‘the most vital section of the community’. India is one of the rare lucky countries of the world which has blessed with most of its population in the working class age group of 20 – 45.Other developed countries like Australia, New Zealand are facing severe problems to maintain this structure as most of their population is in the dependent class of the society in the age bracket of 50-75 which cannot be seen as work formidable task force to empower a nation.But the sad part in Indian scenario is that we are not able to generate enough job scope for the educated youth section of our society.

The young educated Indian has to go out and search for a better lifestyle and a better living far away from his friends and family, just to give respect to the formal education which he has acquired over the years. According to the International Migration Organisation, there are 1 billion migrants in the world, 215 million international and 740 million internal migrants. More people are on the move in search of better opportunities, freedom, peace and in general a better life. In today’s world, knowledge is power and Information is the key to success. In most third world & developing nations, the youth is rural and semi-urban areas are confronted with poor educational Infrastructure. In Indian context, there are broadly three types of schools- (i) schools having teachers and children but no buildings or insufficient classrooms,(ii) schools having buildings and students, but no teachers ,(iii) schools having buildings and teachers ,but no students because of non-availability of quality teachers , educational tools & equipments. The colleges in these areas are no better.

Next is lack of quality technical &vocational education, lack of qualified science teachers, scientific tools, equipments and other educational infrastructure. Lack of quality educational infrastructure in rural &semi-urban areas in most Third world & Developing nations focus the mere ambitious modern rural youth to migrate to schools & colleges in cities & metropolis. The factors that drive migration of youth from rural to urban areas at the micro-level are more or less the same that determine migrant motives at the International level .Better education, better employment opportunities, better vertical and horizontal mobility in job situations, more lucrative pay packets , better quality of life and increasing aspirations of the youth in a liberal free economic world are the migrant motives . The number of young students from Third World countries like India has quadrupled over the last two decades.

For some a foreign degree is a status symbol; but for the majority of students from poor Third world countries & developing economies it is the quest for knowledge & better job prospects that drive them to migrate to American and Western Universities & Colleges . One of the major bottlenecks in the pathway of India’s development is Brain Drain. Brain Drain, a common phenomenon in the developing nations, refers to a condition where a large number of technically skilled individuals migrate to another country (a developed one) for various reasons, personal or professional. India has experienced a very high emigration rate in the past few decades. Brian Drain is equivalent to a major financial failure for the country, and adequate steps should be taken by the government in co-operation with the civilian populace to assuage it. Some of the ways by which our country can alleviate Brain Drain are: better infrastructure, better job opportunities, better educational institutions, and the most important of all “removal of reservations”. Better infrastructure implies to a high quality of lifestyle.

Planned residential societies providing all sorts of amenities can surely attract our human resource and avoid their migration to the developed countries in search of a quality living. More industries and businesses should be set up so that ample job opportunities are available for the educated youth. Young India fancies the “Great American Dream”, and hence lucrative compensation and benefits should be offered to all sectors of employment. Greater opportunities for higher studies and research should be made available to India’s brilliant youth. Sufficient funds should be allocated for research in the burgeoning fields of biotechnology, cloud computing, nanotechnology and so on. However, the principal means of eradicating Brain Drain is the eradication of an equally heinous social stigma called “reservation”. Reservations should be debarred in all sectors of the society, be it education, workplace, or government. Reservations can only hinder a nation from moving ahead. So,youth migration can have adverse effects on a developeing country like INDIA.

The need of the hour is that merit and excellence is given its due place of pride. Nepotism, bureaucratic interference, poor and appalling working conditions, etc. should be eliminated. Unless we create a proper work culture, working conditions, job opportunities and handsome salaries, it is almost impossible to check and stop this youth migration. The problem is really very serious and has also attracted the attention of the U.N. It has suggested that developing nations should be properly and adequately compensated for the loss caused by brain drain. The developed countries should pay the affected countries because it is a great boon to them. But the suggestion is neither practicable nor acceptable as it involves many complexities and controversies. Thus ,with no dependence on developed countries and with no hope of any compensation for the already migrated youth let us take a step ahead to curb this migration wave and once again remember the words of SWAMI VEVEKANAND. “ARISE, AWAKE AND STOP NOT TILL THE GOAL IS REACHED”

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