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CM asks youths to shun ‘reservation mindset’


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SHILLONG, Oct 19: Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma has suggested the youths to develop a competitive mindset and eschew ‘reservation policy mindset’ in order to survive in contemporary times girdled with competition.
The chief minister made the fervent appeal while addressing a gathering during Aspire Meghalaya District Talents Event 2022 at U Soso Tham Auditorium on Wednesday.
According to a statement, Aspire Meghalaya’s District Talent Event 2022 commenced on October 6 and the East Khasi Hills chapter of the event was organised here on Wednesday.
During the programme, the chief minister also felicitated 103 campuses from the district for their participation in the Meghalaya Youth Survey 2022 and Soft Skills Training interventions under Aspire Meghalaya.
Conrad, in his address, said that youths are one of the biggest strengths as well as one of the biggest challenges for any state or country.
“There’s no reason why, in spite of the challenges we may have as a state, we can’t come out on the top and change the mindset that we cannot be among the top states of the country become one of the top ten states in ten years; the process must start with key stakeholders and key groups – farmers, women and youths,” he said.
He informed that Aspire was meant to tap the talents, accept oneself and build confidence with proper grooming and guidance.
“You may not see the results of the programme today, but ten years from now, these same youths who are here today will have the kind of confidence in moving forward in life. We will see a different sense of purpose, passion, confidence and positivity like never before. This is the difference and it is going to happen. But we need to be persistent and work together. Every single person has a role to play to make sure that we are able to invest properly in the human capital we have,” he added.
Reminding the youths that the contemporary world is competitive, the chief minister said, “We have to remember that we need to compete with the best. The reservation policy is there for us but that does not mean that our mindset has to be a ‘reservation policy mindset’ but a competitive mindset. Fight as if you need to survive. Fight as if there is no reservation for you. Fight as if you are going to compete with the best from the world. It is that competitive mindset that I want in every single youth.”
As part of the programme, an interactive session was also held between the chief minister and the schoolchildren.
One of the students asked the chief minister about the state government’s initiatives in safeguarding and promoting indigenous music.
Conrad responded, “There are programmes and interventions that promote local musicians which include indigenous artists. The Tri-Hills Ensemble concluded recently is one such instance”.
It may be mentioned that class 9 student of St. Mary’s Higher Secondary School Afshana Nongkynrih (Dancing), class 11 student of St. Anthony’s Higher Secondary School, Pynursla, Elanstar Mawiong (Musical Instruments) and 1st Semester student of Shillong Commerce College Ashish Paul (Singing) emerged as the Aspire Meghalaya District Stars from East Khasi Hills.
Others who were part of the programme include Director of School Education & Literacy RM Kurbah, East Khasi Hills Deputy Commissioner Isawanda Laloo, Assistant Director of Sports & Youth Affairs Paia B War Nongbri, students, teacher, et al.
It is pertinent to note that a huge part of the Aspire Meghalaya initiative is the identification of emerging talents from across Meghalaya.
“Talent discovery platforms were integrated into the campus training interventions that have seen the emergence of 350 promising talents from across districts in talent spaces varying from singing, dancing, spoken word, sport performance and visual arts. Top three talents are selected by a panel of District Talent Committee members at each district event. 36 District Stars will converge at a state-level summit where Top 12 State Stars will be recognised,” a statement in this regard said.
Aspire Meghalaya is an initiative of the Directorate of Sports & Youth Affairs which is supported by the State Education Mission Authority of Meghalaya (SEMAM-SSA) under the Education department, and implemented by AVENUES, Shillong.
Over the course of the year, over 64,000 youths from 332 campuses have been engaged in the Meghalaya Youth Survey and more than 13,000 students across 62 campuses have been trained in soft skills and career exploration programmes under the initiative.


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