15 May 2012

25 years hence celebrating today's youth

The following blog in HBR will set most of us thinking:


Here are some statistics from the Indian Government's census report:

(a) Those in the age bracket of 25-44 years are 27.6 percent of the Indian population. The absolute number is 284008819.

(b) Those in the age bracket of 45-64 years are 13.5 percent of the Indian population. The absolute number is 139166661.

Here in India - as elsewhere - we celebrate youth. The Indian population profile is young and energetic and is raring to go.

But think of 25 years hence. Folks part of that magic figure of 284 million (28.4 crores) will turn 50 plus. There will be many a gray among their shiny black. Currently, the middle-aged 13.5 percent are struggling to keep their jobs or get new jobs. And the struggle gets tougher with each passing day. Every company wants young hands and nimble feet. No one wants a 45 plus. What will happen to the 284 million, 25 years hence? (I don't talk in percentages because percentages will change given the projected population growth of 2.1%) Think of the old in Greece who barely existing now. Their savings have eroded and their pensions do not even cover minimum wages. Our current young population could well end up like the elderly Greeks of today. Unless...

Unless we build enough structures where 50 plus can work and prosper. We have to create structures that enable 50 plus people to work in an enabling, creative and constructive environment. Structures have to be built where they are of use to the society. Structures where the 50 plus is a genuine contributor and not a burden or is considered deadwood.

Just as the young are citizens of the world, the middle aged and the old too deserve a right to livelihood and a life of dignity.

Unfortunately, getting old is a one way ticket and this journey happens to everyone. We all eventually reach there. In fact, there is enough research to suggest that those born after 2000 have a good chance to survive 100 years on this earth. It's better that we recognise this truth and start giving space to the current middle aged and the old. That way, once we reach there, there will be others who will give us space.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

India is young so India must rock but those in the age group of 45 to 60 are no less creative hence there should be constructive environs for them to work.


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