Pakistan is among the youngest countries in the world, and second youngest in the South Asian region after Afghanistan.

According to global statistics, 64% of the total population of Pakistan is below the age of 30 while  29% is aged between 15 and 29 years. However, we have yet to take advantage of this youth bulge.

Rather our youth continue to face a lot of problems that no government ever looked serious about paying attention to.

The successive governments did acknowledge the importance of youth but failed to do anything concrete to tap their potential.

The incumbent government, led by PTI, is no exception.

Before coming to power, Imran Khan never ceased to mention the ''important'' role of youth in  nation-building. He always pledged to invest in the human capital, rather than in roads, streets and buildings.

On assuming power, Imran Khan did launch a few programmes for youth, that all fell pretty short of their needs and expectations.

Unemployment is one of the biggest problems facing the youth of today. The situation has hopelessly worsened in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Lack of proper education and skills is among the factors affecting the chances of our younger workforce of getting employed.

Lack of transparency in recruitment to government jobs is also a demotivating factor for  the young educated lot. Discouraging merit in the  recruitment process also discourages talent.

That the unemployed youths  highly likely to turn towards evils like drug addiction, crime and terrorism goes without saying.

The first and foremost the government should devise a comprehensive youth-centric policy on how to produce educated and skilled youth; how to raise their capacity, how to make best use of available talent; and how to make them part of the job market.

The government should set aside a proper budget for the development of Pakistan's youths.

The World Students Society thanks author Ishaque Junejo, Sindh, Pakistan.


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