Democracy is not just about having an elected government but about having representatives from all sectors and levels of society, especially young people. Currently, we have a majority of the population under 40, electing to power a majority of people over 60.
The country has progressed since independence, but development would have been much faster if we had had a few young torchbearers to light the way. India needs young leaders at all levels who can use their enthusiasm and energy for the betterment of society.
Rishvanjas Rishi Raghavan
A young political scientist from Bengaluru changes the scenario at his level to formulate the politics of today and tomorrow. Rishvanjas Rishi Raghavan ensures that the younger generation is not disenfranchised or disengaged from political processes as it is important to voice public concerns.
He is the leader of the youth wing of the Bengaluru NavaNirmana Party (BNP) and a dynamic leader who made the leap into politics at fourteen while running for high school captain. The BNP is the only city party in the world.
The 22-year-old earned his BSc (Hons) Economics and Finance from Ashoka University and is pursuing a master’s degree in public policy at the National Law School, Bengaluru. Rishi continued his journey of student leadership in college and won student council elections with record votes.
The passionate youngster contributed to the Union budget in July 2019. At 19 years old, Rishi was chosen to attend Lok Sabha, the Parliament for the budget session, and has attended regularly since then.
He was elected the youngest member of the BNP board in September 2021. The 22-year-old has also been invited as a panelist on Kannada News Channels to provide input on passed parliamentary bills and policies in the Union Parliament.
Interest in the work of the civic body
Rishi does not come from a political family. He was interested in the idea of representation and taking responsibility for what was happening in the country.
He spoke to The Logical Indian and shared his insights on New Age leadership and the importance of ward level elections. Asked about his interest in neighborhood elections, Rishi said it was the most ignored area across all three levels of politics, despite being the area with the most impact.
“What you and I need on a daily basis, we need a good quality of life, regardless of our social strata. This includes security, public lighting, waste collection, roads. Tomorrow, if I don’t have water or electricity, I won’t be able to call the prime minister and the prime minister, it will be the local body that will have the role to play, so it has a lot of potential,” he added. Rishi said.
Express concern about BBMP workers
According to the Deccan Herald report, the BBMP decided to consult MPs, MPs and MLCs before finalizing the city’s annual budget without an elected council. It was not well understood by former councillors, how mayors and members of standing committees were excluded from these crucial meetings.
Reportedly, the civic body also plans to reduce the size of the budget to ensure fiscal discipline.
The problem was pointed out by Rishi, who asked the BBMP to focus on paying contractors on time so that the quality of work does not suffer. He said the the company owed more than Rs 3,200 crore to the workers and hadn’t talked about how they were going to settle their dues.
He asked the civic body to make its accounts and audits for the past few years public so citizens know where the money is being spent. The reports will also help people analyze the performance of the company.
Importance of the civic body in politics
Rishi talked about the importance of being part of the council and how one can participate in city affairs through standing committees. There is a committee at the BBMP on education and youth affairs.
“There are nearly 157 schools run by BBMP in the city, which are not in good condition. These schools have gone unnoticed because of the private institutions we have in Bangalore. I am passionate about this. to revolutionize state education but bring about meaningful change,” Rishi said.
Need for New Age Leadership
Speaking on the importance of having new age leaders, the BNP boss said change must be tailored according to citizens’ expectations. Today, if we need smart, technology-driven governance, you need to elect people who understand technology. This is the main reason for young people to get involved in politics.
Any advice for those not interested in politics?
Rishi says it’s a personal choice if someone isn’t interested in politics and wants to pursue a different career, but he has to realize that despite his non-participation, he is part of the circle. They are the beneficiaries of policies and schemes.
“Every action you take causes something, but even your inaction causes something or allows something to happen.” he says.
Through his “New Age Leadership” initiative, Rishi wants to ensure that young people participate and are represented in political institutions, works, decision-making and elections. It ensures people know their rights and have the knowledge and skills to participate meaningfully.
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