I was happy to attend the Youth Conference on ‘Empowering Youth, Transforming Lives,’ which saw the attendance of youths under Namchi-Singithang Constituency in the auditorium of Namchi Public School today.

I was pleased to listen to the 19 Youth Coordinators representing various GPUs of the constituency. They spoke on numerous policies including welfare programmes initiated by the Government.

I spoke on the crucial role that the youth play in State and Nation-building process and urged them to equip themselves with knowledge and skills of the modern day to be successful and self-reliant individuals. They should explore various other employment options rather than looking for government jobs only. Like I always say, our youth can become successful entrepreneurs and be job providers instead of job seekers. I reiterated the fact that the State Government has guaranteed 90% of jobs in private industries/companies for the local people. It rests with them to take advantage of this facility. For those seeking Government jobs, we have increased the upper age limit to 40 years. Numerous opportunities have been created in sectors like tourism, horticulture, organic farming, industries etc. With schemes like Startups, they can venture into their business and can be global leaders.

I called upon the youth of Namchi-Singithang to create a ‘business culture’ like that of developed countries. In our State, we see the dominance of urban areas over the rural populace in all spheres. People from the villages, particularly the younger lot have to work towards ending this dominance, otherwise they will remain as mere consumers at the mercy of the people from towns and cities. For instance, they can take a lead in organic farming, which offers our rural people a huge opportunity to be producers and become trend-setters. Youths can take up small scale industries in villages like agro-based, packaging and marketing of organic produce to aid our farming community.

I called upon the youth of Namchi-Singithang constituency to create an identity for themselves in whichever field they choose. They must avail of all the opportunities created by the Government in Namchi and surrounding areas. They must remember that Sikkim belongs to them and since they are the future of the State, the responsibility lies on their shoulders to keep the prevailing peace and tranquility intact for the next generation. I exhorted them to be pro-active and play a leading role in securing the future of the State and the people.