Journal of Agricultural Extension and rural development Vol. 3(2), pp. 23-28, February 2011 Available online http:// academicjournals.org/JAERD ISSN 2141-2154 ©2011 Academic Journals
Full Length Research Paper
Role of rural youth in agricultural and rural development: A self perceived case study of Okara District, Punjab, Pakistan
Tahir Munir Butt1*, Muhammad Zakaria Yousuf Hassan2, Shahbaz Talib Sahi3, Muhammad Atiq3, Abdual Jabbar4, Irfan Ahmad5, Muhammad Luqman6 and Wasif Shafique1
University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Toba Tek Singh Campus-Pakistan. 2 Agricultural Officer, Gujrat, Muzafarghar, Punjab-Pakistan. 3 Department of Plant Pathology, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad-Pakistan. 4 Department of Agronomy, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad-Pakistan. 5 Department of Forestry, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad-Pakistan. 6 Department of Agri. Extension, College of Agriculture, University of Sargodha-Pakistan.
Accepted 20 October, 2009
Rural youth in Pakistan play very important role in the political, economic and social development of the country. Many Rural Youth Organizations such as Chand tara, Boy Scouting, Girl Guide Movement, Farm Guide Movement and Farm Girl Guide were introduced in Pakistan. But in-spite of all these efforts, Pakistan had no formal system for organizing and training a bulk quantity of its Rural Youth. And it is time to create awareness among our rural youth about new technologies for adoption in the field of agriculture and rural development. Keeping in view the about fact present study was designed in 2008 to ascertain self perceived role of Rural Youth in agricultural and Rural development in District Okara, Punjab, Pakistan. The district comprises three tehsils (sub-division) namely Depalpur, Renala Khurd, Okara. From each tehsil, one union council was selected through simple random technique. Two villages were selected randomly from each selected union council and 25 young males whose ages were in the range of 15 – 25 years were selected randomly from each these selected villages, thus, making a total number of 150 respondents. The data were collected with the help of a specifically designed and pre-tested interview schedule.
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With over 70% population living in rural India, more than half of them are youths. Rural India today is undergoing a rapid transformation. Even as agriculture continues to be a major source of livelihood for rural population, the younger generation is eagerly turning towards alternative sources of livelihoods. This generation of rural youths is keen to obtain an education and skills for their ...
The results showed that 88.0% of the respondents had an education from primary to matric (tenth examination) and above level. Slightly more than one fourth 28.6, 25.7 and 17.2% of the respondents were labourers, farming, farming and playing respectively. On the basis of conclusions it was recommended that for first of all the educational level of the study area should be increased. To establish the cottage industry in villages so that maximum numbers of Rural Youth get employed there and initiate various agricultural developmental programmes for the betterment of Rural Youth. Key words: Rural development, agricultural technology, rural youth. INTRODUCTION According to United Nation’s General Assembly, “Youth are the persons falling between the ages of 15 and 24 years inclusive”. The similar definition was given by Piqa (1999) and Lindley (1993) in their articles. The total population of Pakistan is about 142 million out of which 35 million comes under the category of Youth which is total population having age 15-29 years (UN, 2002).
The first serious attempt was a Rural Youth movement run between 1952 and 1961 under the banner of country’s first organized extension program and rural development entitled “Village Agricultural and Industrial Development
*Corresponding author. E-mail: [email protected]. Tel: +92 300 9468909, +92 336 7447966.
The Role of Youth in Achieving Millennium Development Goals This new millennium started with the advent of the year 2000, and it motivated mankind to wonder and ponder over its purpose, existence, and progress. The dawn of this millennium has come with a plethora of hopes and expectations. The cardinal millennium development goals are economic growth, equality before law, and international peace. ...
J. Agric. Ext. Rural Dev.
Program (V-AID)”. It was V-AID, which gave birth to Chandtara clubs (Mallah, 1997).
Boy Scouting (BS) is one of the world-renowned institutions replete with infinite potentialities of shaping the thought and behaviour of younger generation. Girl Guide Movement (GGM) in Pakistan is towards the preparation of girls for social welfare programs at all levels and to cooperate with all other social welfare agencies such as Pakistan Child Welfare Council (PCWC), Pakistan Red Cross Association (PRCA), All Pakistan Women Association (APWA), etc (Chaudhary, 1967).
Similarly different youth organizations such as Youth Hostelling in Pakistan, Farm Guide Movement (FGM) in December 1966; Farm Girl Guide (FGG) in 1968 were also introduced. Agricultural production in Pakistan is affected by a number of factors including lack of continuity in agricultural policies, politicized environment in agricultural support institutions, isolation of agricultural education, research and extension wings, unfavorable prices, buyer’s and middleman “Mafia”, absence of necessary infrastructure for farm exports, deficient management and marketing skills, a large number of small operators and unproductive tenancy systems, etc. (NRSP, 1999).
These problems may be over come with the help of youth-serving organizations and the practitioners who work with them. During critical hours, they extend learning through rewarding growth and development experiences. They also foster caring environments that optimize the development of young people in community settings. Pittman (1991) recommended strengthening the role of youth-serving organizations to reach underserved and marginalized youth, to extend programs and services to underserved youth and to develop within and crosssector collaboration (Skuza, 2004).
Youth is an important and vital segment of human resources, which not only today but in future will have to shoulder the responsibility for the development including agriculture and rural sectors. The same was voiced by UNESCO (2004) as Youth “not only the future…is also the present”. To produce enough food for the world’s six billion inhabitants with the aim to give a voice to the world’s one billion youth (15 to 24-year-olds) who with better opportunities for education, training and employment, could funnel their youthful idealism, energy and determination into a positive force for change (Piqa, 1999).
The Government of Pakistan is a federal government established by the Constitution of Pakistan as a centralized governing authority of the four provinces of a proclaimed and established parliamentary democratic republic, constitutionally called the State of Pakistan. The order of operations constitutes a Westminster system, and it comprises three branches of government: the executive, the ...
Pakistan is a developing country and agriculture is the mainstay of its economy. Its contribution to GDP is nearly 20.9 and 43.4% of the total employment is generated from agriculture. This sector not only fulfils the daily living requirements of population of the country but is also the main feeder of raw materials to all industries. Agriculture remains the dominant source of employment in Pakistan and approximately 66% of the country’s population live in rural areas and directly or indirectly rely on the agriculture sector for their livelihood (Anonymous, 2007).
However, in Pakistan, there is no formal system to organize the most energetic and enthusiastic youth for development
purposes. On the contrary, they are being exploited by people with vested interests for creating instability in the country. This means there is a dire need to organize the Youth for development purpose as receptivity and responsiveness is more in the younger group than the elders particularly in the following context; risk aversion, mental activity and scientific orientation is better in youth; the process of learning is quick; mentally alert, socioeconomically considerate, open to new ideas; take less time for creating awareness and interest and are able to experiment and adopt quickly. There was no study conducted previously for self-perceived role of Rural Youth in Punjab and especially in district Okara, Punjab, Pakistan. The present study was designed in especially to see self perceived role of Rural Youth in rural and agricultural development in district Okara, Punjab, Pakistan.
METHODOLOGY Methodology provides a structure and ways for various aspects of the problem which is under consideration that ultimate provides valid generalization about the phenomena (Thakur, 2003).
Punjab means “The land of five rivers” that is, River Sutlej, Bias, Ravi, Chenab and Jehlum, all of these run side by side in the planes of the Punjab. The province comprising 35 districts extends over an area of 205,344 km2 (Government of the Punjab, 2004).
In consideration of every field in education I believe that there is none more impactful than that of a social studies class at an adolescent level. Whereas other disciplines can also challenge students to think critically and in new, creative ways, a social studies course has the unique opportunity to teach content in a way fundamentally essential to the progression of society. If the next ...
The total population of Punjab was 85.65 million; share in country’s population was 55.63% (Government of Pakistan, 2006).
The Rural population was 69% and Urban one was 31% (Government of the Punjab, 2004).
Pakistan has been endowed by nature with a rich soil, aided by an efficient irrigation system. It has earned a name for agricultural productivity. Selection of study area The study was conducted in Okara District of the Punjab province of Pakistan. All the three tehsils namely Depalpur, Renala Khurd and Okara were selected for the study on the following grounds. i. All the tehsils were similar in socio-economic and agricultural conditions ii. The educational level in all the selected tehsils was very low. iii. Traditional norms and male dominancy in whole the area prevails. iv. Researcher himself working in this district for last approximately two years as Lecturer in the subject of Agricultural Extension Education at Sub-Campus University of Agriculture Faisalabad at Depalpur District Okara, Punjab, Pakistan and provide rendered advisory services to the farming community in this selection area. Selection of sample for the study Therefore present study was conducted in district Okara, Punjab, Pakistan. The Okara District is famous for its fertile lands, peaceful natural environment and green fields of potato, sugarcane, wheat, rice and maize crops. The district comprises three tehsils namely Depalpur, Renala Khurd, Okara. As the number of union council and villages in all three tehsils varies too much, therefore, researcher decided to give equal chance to all tehsils and on these basis it was decided that one union council and two villages from each tehsil were selected randomly (Sudman, 1983; Charmaz,
Butta et al.
No. and Percentage of the respondants
120 100 80 60 40 20 0 Up to 18 19-22 Above 22 years Total No. %
Figure 1. Distribution of the respondents according to their age.
From each tehsil, one union council was selected through simple random technique. For the selection of villages lottery method was adopted (Thakur, 2003) and names of villages were written on pieces of paper, then union council wise two tickets were selected. Thus, making a total of six villages, the respondents were selected through simple random sampling method (Ogunjuyigbe et al., 2005).
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Two village was selected randomly from each selected union council and 25 young males whose ages were in the range of 15 25 years were selected randomly from each these selected villages, thus, making a total number of 150 respondents. The data were collected with the help of a specifically designed and pre-tested interview schedule. The collected data were analyzed with the help of an appropriate statistical package for interpretation and formulation of suggestions. A well structured interview schedule having open and closeended questions was prepared (Acharya et al., 2005; Tucker et al., 2005).
The data were collected with the help of a specifically designed and pre-tested interview schedule. The collected data were analyzed with the help of an appropriate statistical package for interpretation and formulation of suggestions.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION Age of an individual makes him mentally mature and able to take rational decisions (Khan, 1991).
Therefore, data collected from respondents and showed in Figure 1 which reveals that 52.0% of the respondents fall under the age category of 19 – 22 years, followed by 25.3% of up to 18 years and 22.6% of them were above 22 years of age. Education is the process of developing knowledge, wisdom and other desirable qualities of mind, character and general competencies, especially by a source of formal instruction (Evenson and Mwabu, 1998).
visualized that more the percentage of educated people more will be the rate of development (Hussain et al., 2003).
Keeping in view the importance of this aspect respondents were asked question about their level of education and the results cleared the picture in Figure 2 which shows that a large majority of the respondents collectively had different levels of education, that is, 29.3% were middle to matric, 26.7% were above matric, 23.3% were up to primary and 8.7% had primary to middle level of education. However, only 12.0% of the respondents were illiterate. Table 1 shows that out of the 150 respondents 44.0% were students, out of them 53 (35.3%) were studying in school/college or university and 13 (8.7%) were studying at their homes and 84 (56.0%) were not going to school. Almost similar results were achieved by those of Idrees (2003).
Youths are considered very important in the development and transformation of any nation. For the youths of any nation to live up to expectation, they must be empowered. That is why youth empowerment through quality education cannot be overemphasized. This paper considers quality education, its importance to youth empowerment and in what ways it empowers. The paper recommended proper ...
This rate of education is bit lowered than that of provincial or national level (GOP, 2008).
The 13 (8.7%) number of respondents who did not go to school/college or university and got their education at home were further asked about their sources of education at home. The results of their responses highlighted in Figure 3 which indicates that 46.2% of the respondents, who studied at home, got education through private tuition, followed by 38.4 and 15.4% of the respondents who got education through AIOU (Allama Iqbal Open University, Islamabad, Pakistan) and by relatives, respectively. Present almost similar results as reported by Idrees (2003) who found that most of the respondents were gone to school/college or university for education. After investigating the status of respondents as student they were further asked about their timings to spend after
J. Agric. Ext. Rural Dev.
160 140 120 100 80 60 40 20 0 Illiterate No. % 18 12 Up to Primary 35 23.3 Primary to middle 13 8.7 Middle to matric 44 29.3 Above matric 40 26.7 Total 150 100
Figure 2. Distribution of the respondents according to their education.
No. and Percentage of the respondants
Table 1. Distribution of the respondents according to their studentship.
Status Students Study in school/college or university Study only at home and not go to school/college or university
Yes Yes 66 53 13 % 44.0 35.3 8.7 No 84 13 53
No % 56.0 8.7 35.3
coming from school/college or university. It is evident from Table 1 that 66 (44.0%) number of respondents were students, so enquiry was made about the distribution of timings they utilized after coming from their respective institutions. Gathered data displayed in Table 2 reveals that slightly more than one fourth (31.8%) of the respondents were busy in studying, playing and went to dera after coming back from school/college or university followed by studying and playing, studying and went to dera as reported by 20.4, 15.9 and 15.9% of the respondents, respectively. Only 2.3% of the respondents served their parents after coming back from school/ college or university. In Punjabi or Pakistani rural context it is customary that male children shouldered field burden of their parents and serves as unpaid labour, therefore they indulged in different pieces of work at home after coming back from their studies. But one thing is alarming for the change in society norms, that is, only one respondent serve his parent. Therefore, it is necessary to probe into the societal setup and found the causes of this change.
Out of total number of 150 respondents 66 were students and rest of 84 (56.0%) were indulged in different types of bread earning activities. The data in this regard exhibits in Table 3 which showed that 23.8%, 21.7%, 14.3% and 10.7% of the respondents were involved in laboring farming, farming and playing and farming, business and playing respectively. The rest of the respondents involved in activities like farming and labour, playing, labour and playing, trading, driver, pulling cart and unemployed. The respondents were asked questions about their suggestions for improving and increasing rural youth participation in various agricultural and rural development activities and their responses are tabulated in Table 4 which depicts that most (44.0%) of the respondents suggested that youth should take part in making NGOs for the development of village but on the other hand 35.0% of the respondents suggested that Government should develop agricultural industry in villages for better employment chances for Rural Youth, similarly 28.0% of them suggested that youth should fully concentrate on
Butta et al.
Source of Education
No. and Percantage of the respondants
80 60 40 20 0 Private tuition No. % 6 46.2 Through AIOU 5 38.4 By relative 2 15.4 Total 13 100
Figure 3. Distribution of the respondents according to their sources of education at home.
Table 2. Distribution of the respondents according to their work at home after coming back from school/college or university.
Table 3. Distribution of the respondents according their activities in case they do not go to school/college or university.
Activity Studying, playing and go to dera Studying and playing Studying Go to dera Taking rest Playing Serving parent Total
No. 14 9 7 7 3 3 1 44
% 31.8 20.4 15.9 15.9 6.8 6.8 2.3 100.0
their study and a nominal percentage (19.2%) of the respondents suggested that highly educated should stay in their villages and should not migrate to cities. CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS From above discussion, it was concluded that youth were the important asset of the nation but was exploited by the different agencies and their capabilities/competencies were not fully utilized by the Government or nation. On the basis of conclusions it was recommended that first of all Government should take serious steps for developing rural based NGOs in which Rural Youth actively participate for the development of their villages. Government
Activity Labouring Farming Farming and playing Unemployed Farming and labour Playing Labour and playing Trading Driver Pulling cart Farming, business and playing Total
No. 20 18 12 6 5 3 2 5 1 3 9 84
% 23.8 21.7 14.3 7.1 5.9 3.5 2.4 5.9 1.2 3.5 10.7 100.0
should initiate various agricultural developmental programmes for the betterment of Rural Youth. Government should establish technical and vocational institutes in villages for the training of Rural Youth. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS We would like to express our thanks to Dr. Muhammad Zakaria Yousaf Hassan, Agricuture Officer, Gujrat,
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Table 4. Distribution of the respondents according to their suggestions about involvement of Rural Youth in agricultural and rural development.
Suggestions Youth should take part in making NGOs for the development of village Government should develop agricultural industry in villages for better employment chances for Rural Youth. Youth should fully concentrate on their study. Highly educated peoples should stay in their villages and should not migrate to cities. Government should start various developmental programmes for the betterment of Rural Youth Government promote positive activities so that youth should not involve in bad activities. Rural youth should help their parents in agricultural activities and take interest in getting more agricultural knowledge. Technical and vocational institutes should be established in villages for the training of Rural Youth. There should be good transport facilities for Youth so they go easily to educational/vocational institutes which are far from villages
No. 55 44 35 24 19 18 14 4 3
% 44.0 35.0 28.0 19.2 15.2 14.4 11.2 3.2 2.4
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