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Cabinet approves Meghalaya Youth Policy 2021

SHILLONG: The State cabinet on Monday approved the Meghalaya Youth Policy 2021. Drafted by the Sports and Youth Affairs Department, the policy is in sync with the government’s vision for the state to transform Meghalaya to be amongst the top 10 states in 10 years in GSDP per capita and SDG ranking.

The policy aims to address major issues and concerns of the youth based on nine identified key thrust areas that include education, health & wellbeing, counseling & mentoring, employment, skill development & entrepreneurship, sports, cultural & creative industries, engagement & leadership, inclusion, and environmental consciousness.

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Under the policy, the Meghalaya government has planned the implementation of 45 programs that would be measured by 54 performance monitoring indicators.  These performance indicators have been mapped to 10 departments and are planned to be measured quarterly, bi-annually, and annually.

Informing about the policy, Chief Minister Conrad Sangma said, “We are happy to announce Meghalaya’s Youth Policy 2021 that provides a systematic framework for youth engagement and provides equal opportunities to all young men and women for their socio-economic development and in turn contribute to enhancing the per capita income of the state and in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals of the state.”

The structure of this policy is based on a result-oriented approach that will be driven by various departments and will be evaluated in a time-bound manner quarterly, biannually, and annually.

Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs, Banteidor  Lyngdoh said, “Meghalaya Youth Policy 2021 is our endeavor to provide a concrete and progressive framework that addresses the current issues, challenges, and concerns of our youth towards their growth and development. The policy has 9 thrust areas with specific programs under each area.”

The policy includes planned interventions covering the lifecycle of youth in its entirety that includes early childhood interventions implemented through various plans and policies like Early Childhood Education Mission, Meghalaya School Improvement Plan (MSIP), Health up-gradation programs like FIT India, sports infrastructure up-gradation, setup academies of excellence in the area of arts and culture, and recognition of key achievements in sports, arts and culture.

As per the latest estimates, Meghalaya has a population of approx. 38.29 lakh people, of which over 74% percent i.e. 28.48 lakhs are under the age of 35 years.

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