Thursday, March 23, 2023

Failing system

Without a doubt, we have many sectors that demand immediate attention. Among many others, we have an ailing health care, chronic unemployment and an obsolete education system. And uplifting them will be uplifting the whole society. Today our State exchequer is in a viral soup and that’s very much official. We have over Rs 2600 deficit as on date. The situation is bound to worsen as revenue collection is poor. It will likely take sometimes for the state to make the decades old rusted finance machinery work. On the other hand we have a huge unemployment crisis. We know that social evils, crime, drug abuse, suicides, discontent and unrest all emanate from the curse of unemployment. But we also have a chronic swollen salary bill, which had been a red zone in liabilities side of the budget for years now. Given these facts accommodating thousands of unemployed youth can be a serious challenge. The government must shift focus of youth from jobs seekers to job creators. On health front, doctor patient ratio, neo-natal mortality rate, spurious drugs, outdated medical infrastructure and many associated issues have defined our health sector over the years, and which was glaringly exposed during the ongoing Covid pandemic. Moreover, quality of pathology has always put a question mark on our experts and equipments. The government should first of all strengthen its substantial network of primary health centers. This network if given proper human resource and technological support has the potential to soak a substantial amount of health care pressure in the state. Second and equally important is a clean drug industry in the state. There is also the issue of traffic jams, which is no longer a problem of Kohima and Dimapur alone. The problem has spread and engulfed other towns/districts. It seems nobody is able to figure out how to deal with this issue, which is only getting bigger every passing day. Traffic mess reflects the administrative bankruptcy that the state is in. In addition to building wide roads there is an immediate need to uplift our flawed public transport system. Less private transport means less traffic and smooth movement. On education sector, much has been written on it. We’ve and outdated education system, which no one can deny. We have also seen one of the biggest scams in this sector – the backdoor appointment of teachers. That aside, the role of skill imparting institutes in the state has been overlooked and underutilized. This is primarily the reason for our poor industrial growth – the lack of skilled human resource. The sector eagerly awaits a major overhaul. At the same time, capital city Kohima and the commercial center Dimapur are fast transforming into an obese person gaining weight unplanned at wrong places. This unplanned growth has made us all pay a heavy price in every way. There is an urgent need to devise a solution for soaking the pressure of urbanization without abusing agricultural and forest land. We also have an acute water and power crisis, and the list goes on and on. Sadly successive governments over the years have failed in curbing unbridled corruption and it continues till date. This is the main vein to be cauterized if development has to take roots. With corruption gaining ground, no progress can be thought of. In the sectorial arena, the human and infrastructural development asks for attention. In the tangible factor development, power is main developmental factor. It has to be taken seriously by the government as the state is deficient in power despite huge potential of hydroelectricity. But we are yet to see any road map from the government in this sector. Successive regimes have failed to lessen the agony of the state in this sector. This sector is pivotal for major boost of the state’s economy by way of boosting the social and industrial levers. T&D loss and distribution options also demands immediate attention. The industrial sector is also at low ebb. Until the state comes up with a strong base for providing goods and services indigenously, it cannot guard this sector of vital importance. Indeed there are many more sectors which the government needs to ponder over to ensure smooth development in the state. If government seriously takes all these moves, it can really make a difference.