Youth As Leaders


Dixya Poudel

The recent election for House of Representatives and Provincial Assemblies was preceded by highly competitive political campaigning and canvassing. From living rooms and cafes stalls to news sites and even social media, the election was the talk of the town. Throughout the cold month of November, people argued and speculated on political leaders and wondered who would ultimately be crowned the winners. Certainly in elections there are bound to be winners and losers as the nation chooses its next set of leaders.

 As seen on November 20, independent candidates contested at a record high number, perhaps encouraged by the recent win of Balen Shah as the Mayor of Kathmandu. It is heartening to see youths contesting in the election as independent candidates with some even winning seats. As more and more seasoned politicians are aging, there seems to be new and young faces in the political climate. It has shown that Nepali citizens particularly the youth want a change in the nation’s politics. Could they be fed up with the political instability, corruption and power dynamics of the elderly politicians? 

And are Nepalis shifting their stance when it comes to political setting, with the coming of age voters choosing leaders who are younger and competent over the older ones? As such, leaders are individuals with a purpose, charisma and a vision brimming with a cause. 

However, effective leadership isn’t always loud and forthright; often it has a certain gravitas. It isn’t just in the public eye, it is also behind-the-scenes, steadily gathering strength, determination, and purpose. And a leader isn’t just one with the most supporters. 

Instead, leaders are those who can inspire a deep sense of faith, integrity and loyalty due to their visionary aptitude. They provide direction towards societal progress. As seen in the tribal communities, there is always a leader at the helm called a chief. And the tribal political structure is a window into the history of leadership in the human world. Now in the modern world, instead of chiefs there are CEOs, managers and politicians who govern over a company, an organisation and ultimately a nation. 

And a lot hinges upon how such leadership conducts itself. If one is to think of self-less leaders, one thinks of Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, Mother Teresa, etc. Likewise, an example of visionary leader would be Steve Jobs. Apart from highlighted leaders there are those who quietly work for a purpose through their activism. However, not all are born to be a leader, especially a great one since it comes at a price. 

Higher up, it can be lonely but the solitude can be empowering. And whether fame or oblivion, leadership is greater than renown. It is in guiding people to a right path-one that isn’t driven by avarice and clout but instead is motivated towards a greater purpose or one could say a higher calling. Ultimately it is about fostering positive changes. 

Thus, to see the Nepali youth taking up the political platform in the recent election with a purpose of bringing about changes is certainly a welcome prospect. As seen by the political turnout in recent election, the youths are certainly changing the image of leadership in Nepal setting in tone for proficient governance.    

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