TODAY -

A musing on BJP's social upliftment cell

S Nongpoknganba Meitei *



As per the 2011 census, the State of Manipur has a total population of 27,21,756 and the literacy rate stands at 79.85% which is higher than the National average of 74.04% and at the same time unemployment is zooming.

There is no industry or other infrastructure which can employ such number of unemployed people and so the demand for Government jobs is simply tremendous, so much so that in the year 2011 when Government called for employment of 1000 odd person of below matriculations to form the Village Defence Force (VDF), there came 17000 applications from persons who were either graduates or postgraduates.

Such is our predicament and on this issue, Prof S Tikendra Singh, the present State president of BJP Manipur Unit had an informal discussion with some of his colleagues at his office chamber. The discussion turned more serious and a sense of urgency crept into it. So many reasons were cited for the prevailing unemployment and one of them being lack of resources in the State.

However the president stood his ground that there is no lack of resources in the State. We have plenty of resources, its only that we are not utilizing it properly. Yes the State has no dearth of resources, to make the State healthy and wealthy. The State has a vast and rich forest cover and we are not exploiting it to the fullest.

Also in the hilly regions, rubber, tea, orange, cardamom, etc. are grown, while in the valley, common food crops including paddy, sugarcane, potato, tobacco, mustard, pulses, pineapple, banana, lemon, pears, peach, etc. can be grown and of course medicinal plants too.

The climatic conditions just make the State quite suitable for horticulture and lots of opportunities are also there for developing fishery in the State. The pleasant climate and natural beauty further endows the State with solid prospects for tourism which is an ever enlarging industry in the world, Manipur is also not lacking in human resources.

We are a sports powerhouse. The skills of Manipuri women in handloom are unique and give them Nationwide recognition in this sector. Our nurses are considered as efficient, hardworking and sincere in Delhi and NCR regions. The discussion which started as an informal one took a brainstorming turn.

But the real issue is, what BJP can do in this respect; what will be the party’s contribution towards solving the problem. Whatever the Government can do, the Government is doing, but what we as Karyakartas of the party can do should be done and the president came up with the humblest idea that, we should try to convert our youth as entrepreneurs and employers rather than employees and job seekers.

We should inject a disciplined work culture into our workforce and towards this objective, we should try to avail the benefits of the various Government schemes with which the unemployed educated youths can be converted into entrepreneurs.

These youths should be made aware of the various schemes of the Government by outreaching to them and by organizing awareness programs in their own locality and if necessary by going to their door and motivating them to become entrepreneurs and work for the progress and development of the State.

However, it transpired that this work can be done only by a dedicated group in the party. So the Manipur State BJP under the concerted effort of its present president led to the formation of a dedicated group eight active members in the BJP under the name of style of Social Upliftment Cell with S Nongpoknganba Meitei as its convener.

Though there are many other cells in the party, this particular cell has been given three objectives. First to reach out to the people and make them aware of the various schemes and programs of the Government both at the Center as well as at the State level.

Secondly the cell is to work towards encouraging, motivating and soliciting the people to avail the benefits of such schemes, programs and policies of the Government and finally to facilitate the availability of the benefits of such schemes and programs and policies. There are hundreds of Government schemes which have been enacted targeting at different section of the populations.

Some are freebies meant for poorest of the poor. Some aims at incentivizing the effort of self employed people and to give basic working capital for such self employed people. Some schemes are specifically aimed at developing small scale industries, both in the manufacturing as well as in the service sectors.

Some schemes simply provide platforms to sell finished products. Yet some schemes aims at skilling the people. To put it in short, there is no dearth of government schemes which if one wants can avail and march forward. Of course sincerity and hard work will always be an essential ingredient.

However it goes without saying that many people are not even aware of the so many schemes much less availing the benefits under such schemes or even if they are aware they for one or the other reasons, do not apply for such benefits or even if when they apply, for one or the other reason, they fail to get the benefit.

However it has been understood that one of the main reasons for such non availing the benefits is due to lack of knowledge about the schemes. This apart, sheer ignorance about some of the criteria which come with such schemes and lack of a certain level of patience towards processing their application block them from availing the benefits.

And it is where, the BJP move in, by spreading awareness of the several schemes, by motivating the people to avail the benefits and further by facilitating the availment of the benefits.

So the idea is to give as many benefits as possible under the different schemes of the Government to as many people as possible so that the benefited people can stand on their own and they can become employers rather than job seekers.

This apart the work of the cell shall also aimed at fulfilling the “antyodaya” that is to say to uplift the last man at the social ladder which forms part of the philosophy of the party which is integral humanism.


* S Nongpoknganba Meitei wrote this article for The Sangai Express
The writer is Spokesperson and Convenor, Social Upliftment Cell, BJP Manipur Pradesh and can be reached at advocatemeitei(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on November 23 2020.



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