Every year, since the Government of India declared on January 12, 1984, the birthday of Swami Vivekananda is celebrated as the National Youth Day all over the country. This day is observed all over the country with great vigour and enthusiasm. Schools and colleges organize competitions and programmes promoting the principles of Swami Vivekananda and drawing inspiration from his ideas on Indian Spiritualism and Science.
This year, on Swami’s 154th birthday, a four-day event has been specially laid out for the occasion in Rohtak with the aim of promoting digital economy jointly by the Center and the State. The theme for the festival this year is ‘Youth for Digital India’. Prime Minster Narendra Modi had addressed the opening session of the event through video conferencing, hinting at the importance of technology and its easy usage in our daily lives. Swami Vivekananda’s teachings have often been quoted by PM Modi, who has described his as “one of the most prolific thinkers and a guiding light who took India’s message to the entire world.”
Vivekananda wanted from the youth of the nation, muscles of iron and nerves of steel. He believed that the youth of the country are the ones who shall carry the quest for justice, hence they need to be encouraged to meet any challenge. His speech at the first Parliament of the World’s Religions, held in Chicago is considered as one of his most noteworthy contribution to the world. He emphasized the ancient philosophy of Hinduism, supported with logic and scientific approach which has inspired young minds across the world.
As the interests of the youth are changing with the times, youth clubs, schools, and colleges across the country have a wider range of activities to gather maximum participation. Activities like face-painting, slogan writing competition on themes such as rash driving, anti-drug drive, essay competition on topics like the importance of global peace, etc. have engaged the young minds on this day. Recently, President Pranab Mukherjee advised the students to engage themselves in activities that make them Happy, so that the aim of a Happy India is achieved.
In the present time, when it is common to see little ones drop out on outdoor activities and play video games on tablets and computers, it becomes essential to celebrate events like this so that children and adolescents understand the importance of national heroes and the significant roles that they have played in the process of nation building. These events allow them the opportunity to engage in history in a fun and interactive way and promote the spirit of nationalism and patriotism.