Why I can’t criticize my government- Part 2
I love my work. It makes me apply everything I have learnt and more. It even educates me on how my government works. It has exposed me to little corners, unknown destinations, off-the-beaten tracks and how my generation fits into this landscape.
I hate events. Events equate workshops & seminars which is equivalent to oral tradition with lots of speech irregularities. But my work led me to events. Events made me witness how my government operates and what my generation demands.
My generation demands reservation. They question what happened to the 25,000 job creation. They demand transparency. They have not forgotten the 350 crore package. To cut a paragraph short, they demand everything. Everything except educational rights.
Education ranks high in my list of “must-have'”. Yesterday, I caught Tim Sebastian of BBC Hard Talk fame anchoring a show where policy makers of Arab Nations came together to discuss their vision of a liberated Iraq. Education was much talked about. Ambassador to the US voiced his thoughts and I quote him “Education is dignity. It builds self esteem”. I remembered the teachers who we protested against because they dared to demoralize us. I remembered LFS Class of 1993. While flipping channels, I got to watch Live Earth Concert on VH1. A promo ran “You don’t need education to do right”. Perhaps not. But you certainly need education to think right. Without education how will you compete in the general level? How will you guarantee for yourself a job among the 25,000? How will you fight for what is yours? How can you be the one individual who can even retain a thousand rupees within your community? I am sorry to say that being a mere literate isn’t going to take you far. Being educated will. You will have to educate yourself on how to create a market to sell your skill.
Of late, the government is trying to invest a lot on education. The Corpus Fund assists successful NSPC, UPSC candidates who clear prelims. The Horti Deppt was seeking applicants for MBA in Agri Business with 50% scholarships. The Corpus Fund in partnership with Llandrillo College is offering 10 scholarships for vocational courses in the UK. Is there going to be a stiff competition or is it going to be a clean walkover? To understand competition you just have to watch NDTV Airtel Scholar Hunt, Destination UK during the weekends at 6 pm. Nevertheless, I won’t be surprised if my generation knows nothing about all of these. After all, we are not very fond of reading. Neichute Doulo of Entrepreneur Associates once remarked, “When a Naga travels, he will always carry his slipper but never a book”.
Through my exposure to events via my work, I do know almost every village has a government school. Investigative stories on newspapers reveal the ratio of teachers against students. I need a disappearing ink to write the statistic here. My own native village’s Thetsumi Govt School might be closed down because it has a kaput % in HSLC. Everybody blames the government but they never blame the young teachers because they are their own. Here, I want to applaud my friends who gave up everything to return to their villages to teach in the government primary schools. At the same time, I want to appeal to my other friends who give up all their school hours to be in Kohima and Dimapur. Your village school might be closed down because of you. Students will remember their school like they remember dinosaurs. Extinct.
Students always remember their school days. I remember what it meant to be taught by a good teacher. I still remember the lessons taught by my LFS teachers who never let us open our textbooks. I remember a science theory I learnt practically. I ran so fast during a 100mtr race that I couldn’t stop even after crossing the marked line. I had to dash against the wall to stop myself resulting in 3 stitches on my left wrist. Kinematics. Law of motion which has no reference to a cause. Education for life. I also remember my professor in LSR who asked me what Jesus replied when asked what an individual owes to his government. You don’t know? It’s a good time to start learning how to read. Look up Mark 12: Verse 14-17.