X Chophika Sumi
Bank Colony, Dimapur
Nagas are gullible- that is usually what the non-locals attributes us. Ever since we attained our Statehood, we’ve been relying completely on the grants/aids from the Central Government for our survival. There were times when some industries and factories flourished during the nascent stage of our statehood but it has all come to a standstill. We might as well perish if at any point of time, the Central Government stops providing funds.
Lately, there have been a realization amongst the Naga youths that it is time we embrace the dignity of labor which is applaudable.While there are multitudes of our youths who flock to the Indian cities for jobs, there are also plenty of young like-minded youths having genuine concern for our society who stays back at home and tries to set up their business or even do odd jobs. For if all the youths migrate out of our state stating the ill- conceived notion that our state is plagued with corruption, nepotism, that there are no opportunities in our state then who will bring change to our land? We cannot simply bring change by only commenting in Social Medias, I presume.
A big shout out to all those who brave against all odds and stays back at home to heal our ailing society.
We Nagas are mostly in to II Generation in terms of education and our parents and elders are also partly to be blamed for the scores of unemployment. With the exception of the few, most of the parents and the society does not approve of other jobs except Government jobs- be it Peon or chowkidar. Government job is alpha and omega for them.
Now let us do a simple mathematics here. Suppose an EAC officer draws a salary of 50K-60K per month. Our Naga trend these days is when someone gets a Government job (an officer especially). We tend to approach that person for all the important or not so important functions as Chief Guest or Speaker. That particular person will have to shell out a minimum of 10K per occasion. Besides the usual routine of being invited as Guest or Special Invitee. Our officers are burdened with lots of donations, fund raise, charity from all the organizations and associations that he/she is familiar with. As a result, we aid our emerging dynamic leaders to plummet.
Now, coming back to our youths who stays back at home to start their own businesses. They cannot just run their businesses on the roads or footpaths. Dimapur, being the commercial hub has witnessed the emergence of many new buildings particularly in the main town. One such glaring example is the Naga Council Dimapur building which was demolished to pave way for the new building. Usually, what happens in our context is that the rooms or the entire building are rented/allotted to the outsiders who are ever ready to shell out any sums of money to acquire it. These people in turn rent out the rooms at exorbitant rates. Our enthusiastic youths are thus deprived of getting any rooms or cannot afford to pay the rents to start their business. With regard to other buildings, it becomes the prerogative of the owner to whomever they want to rent out their building. As for the new NCD building, I feel the first opportunity should be given to our young entrepreneurs if there are any. If this can be materialized, the noble deeds of the NCD members will contribute significantly to the transition that we are in and should be emulated by one and all.
If it is not by us then who will transform our society for us! The change that we have been looking for is ‘US’ and I believe it is a collective responsibility and not just one man’s duty.
For us, by us is the motto of Akuluto Area Union, Dimapur. I found this quite relevant and inspiring and I sincerely hope that it does the same with others as well.