Recently a friend shared an experience which evoked contradictory response from me- a desire to laugh and cry simultaneously. Why? I was unsure which one to go by. Should I laugh at the incredulity of the situation or display the emoji of anger. Turn red! A company on the lookout for fresh recruits made a laughing stock of an educated, professionally qualified youth by offering a pittance as salary. An amount no respectable person should be offered. A remuneration which is a third of what a cook or a salesman earn. (With all due respect to both these, I hold each one who earns her/his bread, with or without butter in high esteem. The comparison is to simply help imagine the scenario the educated youth find themselves in, an unenviable position) Disgusted is how I felt when I first heard of it and then after the sense of shock had sobered down, to my horror a ripple of laughter emerged from my lips. Just didn’t know why!
Was it a sad laughter at the sorry state of affairs of the qualified? Could it be linked to the helplessness felt at the deplorable state of affairs our country and its youth find themselves in- the educated lack employment opportunities and are given to searching in futility for placement based on academic credentials alone. Is brilliance ‘marks obtained’ dependent? Can grades determine the skill/ capability of the person? Tears then sprung to my eyes. How would a qualified individual who has dreams of a comfortable future after an education feel having been made such an undignified offer? What of the dreams he bears in the eyes? What of the self-worth? And what the self -esteem? And wouldn’t it be more dignified to simply refuse to offer a place so that the demeaning act of pulling down a person’s confidence does not occur?
Thankfully the victim of such a callous offer is not in desperate need and can wait for another respectable offer. But what about a young lady or man who have been waiting to complete education to help with the finances of the family? Compelled to accept the offer made, she/he would succumb to pressures and thus be exposed to more exploitation. Isn’t she/he entitled to a sum which ensures a decent living- to manage the daily basic costs? Respectable living is becoming more and more difficult to attain. This incident made me wonder if dignified living has become a distant dream and vision for most of us. And then there’s this instance of an enthusiastic youngster who has been assured of a place and job and has yet to receive the appointment letter! How does the psyche get affected? Does the wait torment him?
The situation could be redeemed. The managers of the affairs of the country ought to become more humane. They ought to be pro youth and think about basic human needs, rising costs of living and devise laws which ensure a remuneration that helps meet subsistence requirements at least, if nothing more. It would keep the youth away from frustration, crime……. And ensure greater productivity.