KOHIMA: Union Minister of Home Affairs Rajnath Singh has said that the forces of change are inevitable and the need of the hour is to master over such forces or else such forces will master over us. To make this really happen, Singh has banked on the youth power.
Singh said this while addressing the annual Hornbill Festival terming it a spectacular event showcasing the rich ancient culture and civilization of the people of Nagaland. He said that the festival powerfully demonstrates the cultural diversity and civilizational unity of the people. “How each tribe is proudly unique in their cultural richness and yet there is an overwhelming sense of unity among all. This spectacular demonstration of unity in diversity in what India is all about,” he said, and added: “At the Hornbill festival I get a glimpse of the Indian spirit of happy peaceful co-existence of the multiplicities”.
“Folk songs and dances are essential ingredients of the traditional Naga culture. Oral tradition is kept alive through songs and folk tales and very often, romantic and historical themes are sung and stories of famous ancestors told. Seasonal songs, which describe various activities done in a particular agricultural season and war dances are also an intrinsic art form in Nagaland,” he said.
Given the rich cultural heritage of Nagaland, Government of India has rightly established the North Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre at Dimapur, Nagaland, he said. “The North Eastern Council (NEC) has also funded the infrastructure for the Margaret Shishak School of Music at Patkai Christian College, Dimapur. You all will be happy to learn that NEC is building a North Eastern Cultural and Information Centre in Delhi. The proposed centre would showcase rich history, culture, heritage and cuisine of the eight States in the Northeast. It will also establish facilities for promotion of tourism, a common facility centre, library, knowledge and resource centre in the national capital. This centre would facilitate dissemination of knowledge about the rich cultural heritage of the Northeast,” he said.
“The forces of change are inevitable and will not wait for anyone. We have to be prepared for it. If we are prepared for it, we will shape the future according to our wish. If we are not prepared for it, we will be shaped by these forces, may be even against our wish. The challenge of the day is to grasp and master these forces. India is geared to grasp and master these forces. The main driver of this is our youth. Our challenge is to make them capable enough to be the master of our better tomorrow. Nearly half the Indian population is young. Similar is the demographic profile of Nagaland. While we are all rightly proud of our rich and glorious past, we also have to create conditions conducive for our rich future. Nearly 50% of Nagaland population is below 25 years. It is they who will shape the future of India including the future of Nagaland. We have to create conditions where their creative and entrepreneurial potential is unleashed to the optimum,” he said.
He expressed happiness that Nagaland is going to get its first medical college under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare with a sanctioned Rs 300 crore. The NEC has also funded setting of a North East Regional Multi Disciplinary Paramedical Institute, Dimapur at a cost of Rs 4981.31 lakh.
He said that Nagaland is geographically located at a vantage point. “It is the gateway to the South-East Asia. Northeast is the pivot of our Government’s ‘Act East’ policy. Today, we are at the best of relations with our neighbour Myanmar. On the bedrock of our shared cultural and civilizational linkages with Myanmar, we have also a large spectrum of shared interests. Government of India is determined to build and improve our connectivity and engagement with South-East Asia,” he said. (PIB)
Also Read: Top Headlines