AMID the ongoing tug-of-war between government and opposition, the children living in Thar, which is one of the most deprived regions of the country, formed their own ‘Thar Children’s Parliament’ to create political awareness among the local youth.
Students from different schools of Tharparkar participated in the election process, and two parties were formed in a democratic way. They chose their ‘speaker’ to run the house and also elected their ‘chief minister’ who has his ‘cabinet’ with ‘ministries’ of education, health, human rights and others.
Their opposition leader, a girl, has asked the party in ‘power’ to ensure strict compliance with what the members have sworn to do.
These ‘parliamentarians’ have prioritised promoting peace in the first place, which is the identification and beauty of Tharparkar region. Besides ensuring quality education for the needy children, equipping libraries and healthcare are also on their to-do list.
Despite living in a desert region where resources are scarce, these children are keen to bring a change. Their efforts should excite and encourage children all over the country who may step in to follow suit. If it happens, this may well lead to a generation of democratic leaders in the years ahead.
These young and enthusiastic ‘parliamentarians’ should be invited to national and provincial assemblies to experience first-hand how the sessions are run in the actual parliament.
Finally, a word of praise is in order for the elders and the educationists in the region who came up with the idea and paved the way for the children of Thar to learn democratic values.
Published in Dawn, January 22nd, 2021