Monday, October 13, 2008

Possible effects of Internet use in Mizoram

    It’s an irony that Mizoram being one of the most literate states in India, 
is one of the poorest states in India. But I would say that it is one of the 
states with the most potential. Being a late entrant, it could take 
advantage of the latest technology possible in the Market. I guess we all 
know that we do not have any precious resources like petroleum, coal or gold 
in Mizoram. However, we have the most precious resource, which is Human 
resource. And if this is utilized wisely it will be very beneficial for us. 
We the Mizos are hardworking people who treasure learning. If we start 
applying the Internet in our lives with our hard work and learning, I’m sure 
that the Internet will be an indispensable part of our life, even though it 
has not been long since the Internet revolution has started. I think the 
Internet is the key technology to bring a revolution in Mizoram, where we 
can move from our primitive bamboo age to the more advanced computer age. 
The computer and Internet as a whole will effect our lives in a big way. Let 
us look into some of the possible effects.

The Effect on Youth: The Internet has been a boon for the youth of Mizoram. 
As we all know, the youth of Mizoram are very much involved in drugs and 
alcohol. I wonder if we ever think why this is so? I believe one of the 
possible reasons could be that the youth of Mizoram do not have any source 
of entertainment. I think the old saying, an empty mind is the devil’s 
workshop is very true here. Peer pressure among the youth is very strong 
among the youth in Mizoram. This is because none of the youth, if not most 
of them, do not want to be an outcast and the odd one out. Thus they just 
join their friends in what they are doing, good or bad. And the sad fact is 
that most of the youth who do drugs do not do them to satisfy themselves but 
rather to identify within that group. So what the youth could do now is to 
influence each other to do something good and enjoyable at the same time. 
The computer can be a place where they can communicate with their far off 
friends. Or use as a message board where they can post messages or make 
their homepages where they can give more information about themselves. Not 
only will the youth be using their time wisely but they will also learn 
computer skills, typing and maybe even a bit of English. Among the youth in 
developed countries, the police say that drug usage and smoking has dropped 
because the youth are too involved with the internet using it to send each 
other messages. Sometimes, I think we’re too involved with our outward 
appearance, the brand of shoes that we are wearing and comparing the costly 
price of our shoes… I think this is utter nonsense because it does not help 
us in any way. At the most it may just make us look very rich or prosperous 
whereas we may not be, which means we are just cheating ourselves. We should 
arm ourselves more with knowledge, knowledge of computers and Internet 
because that is where our future is headed.

For business: The Internet has a great scope for development in Mizoram. In 
Aizawl itself, if we go to any house, we can see a TV with cable connected 
to it. With the latest technology bringing the Internet through the cable 
into the house through TV, it is going to be possible to do business in 
Mizoram. Thus, it may soon be possible to do business in the Internet in 
Mizoram, provided the credit card system comes along too. Thus a person 
would be able to sell handicrafts from the comfort of the house without 
having to go to the Market and selling it at the best prices. Some of the 
ways that we can sell our wares is to use the Business to Consumer (B2C) 
method, Amazon.com and Rediff.com being prime examples. Here they sell 
everything from CDs to Book, the list being endless. The other popular 
method being the Consumer to Consumer (C2C) method. Here the people trade 
what they have with each other, the buyer tries to sell it at the best price 
he can whereas the buyer tries to buy it as cheap as he/she can thus coming 
to a settlement. The Business to Business (B2B) model also is very popular. 
Here the different business trade with each other. To give an illustration, 
Medical transcription is very popular in India. What they basically do is to 
type into words what the doctors in the US are doing; they need this, as it 
is legally necessary. And they give the work of typing to third world 
countries because labour is cheap. And time is saved as there is the time 
difference between the East and West, so while they are sleeping, one can do 
the work here, and when they get up, the work is ready to being sent to 
them.
    To start all this, what our State needs the most is young, dynamic 
entrepreneurs who are willing to take risk, and start businesses based on 
their own ideas and take responsibility upon themselves. I think it is kind 
of sad to see the youth of Mizoram, most of them having finished Their 
Master’s still trying to get job in the Government. There’s a limit to the 
number of employees that the government can employ, because if the 
government employs everywhere the state machinery is going to be in a mess, 
using all the development money in big projects. Sri Lanka recently conceded 
to its student Union and hired all the University Graduates into the 
government. And guess what happened? ! The economy almost collapsed. Mizos 
as we are not only hardworking, but full of ideas and a fertile idea can 
have lot of imagination. And with the human mind at work, there are endless 
possibilities to achieve. It’s kind of sad that most of the intelligent 
students in Mizoram are opting for Medicine and Engineering. This is against 
the trend, what they should be really studying is Management where they’ll 
learn more about entrepreneurship. Imagine if just 200 entrepreneurs 
employed 500 employees, they would be employing 100,000 people, and with 
that if they started Employee stock option or a better pay, the people would 
not only be working harder for the improvement of the state but they would 
also be getting richer. Getting rich is no sin as long as we reap what we 
sow by honest labour and so we should try our best to work hard and try to 
improve our living standards, and then only will the standard of living in 
Mizoram improve.

For the Government: First and foremost, it is the duty of the government to 
improve the infrastructure in the state. We need good roads, good 
electricity and for the Internet, we need a local server somewhere in 
Aizawl.
    I also strongly feel that the State Education Board should work towards 
changing the system of Education in Mizoram. It’s an irony to see so many of 
us studying by rote or should I say learning by heart. By learning by rote, 
we do not learn anything but just the facts, which we soon forget without 
understanding something. What we are doing is just following the 
stereotypes. What we’ve got to do is undo the mindset that has served us so 
well for so long and encourage and embrace change and creative destruction. 
Learning should be an innovative experience where young people would be able 
to compete in the hip- Internet era. Unless the system of education changes, 
they spirit of entrepreneurship will not be very widely seen. And to 
encourage entrepreneurship, I think the Government should encourage Angel 
investors (Investors who help in investment of a firm and get a chunk of the 
profit) and Stock Exchange.
    Corruption is one of the main problems faced by all Governments. If the 
government of Mizoram could connect all the villages in Mizoram, I guess 
there would be certainly less paper work and more efficiency. This could 
mean that we would not need to stand in very long lines to pay our 
electricity bill and water bills and bypass all those corrupt officers who 
keep on pestering us, and asking for bribes.
    One more possible use of the Internet is that it could be used for more 
transparency. Take for instance, in Mizoram there are lot of small projects 
where construction of roads or maybe a Mini- Hydel projects are going on. 
And we constantly hear about witch-hunts where some people say that this 
person is siphoning of some money; where as the other person says that he is 
not guilty. To settle all this what could be done is to keep the records of 
the money spent on the projects for the entire public to see. Perhaps on the 
Internet, not only will this help the people to see that their taxes are 
well spent, but it will also ensure that those who are working on a 
particular project will think twice before tampering with the records 
illegally.
    To conclude, I think that we can immensely profit from the new economy, the 
economy of the Internet. I don’t think anyone of us want to be left behind 
in the race for technology that is sweeping all over the world, let us be 
brave and keep on moving in this world.

 ( This is an article of mine that was published in Pune Student Union Annual Magazine - Zamzo way back in 2001, apologies if  you find it irrelevant)

 

6 comments:

  1. Nice artice!! I ziah hun a rei deuh tawh a tlemte khi chu a outdated toh mai thei. A tam zawk erawh khi chu tlumtea thlir tak in kan la thlir a nih hi maw!! Politician te zingah ngaipawi mawh pahnih khat tal han awm ve hram se chuan thil hi danglam thei tur chu a nia leh.
    i ziak tha tho2 e. Mizo tawng in nitin chanchinbu ah te chhuah chhawng la mawle.. :P

    ReplyDelete
  2. @ wonderboy, i ti lawm awm hle mai. Power te hi han ngai pawimawh deuh se chuan, broadband nei bawk i la, keini Mizo te hian tun ai hian hman kan sawn pui zawk ngei ang. Sorkar tan poh, Sumdawn nan poh. BPO te poh tan a har vak lo ang mawle.

    ReplyDelete
  3. i am trying to get his contact number since long time it will be very great help if you put his email id or anything to which i can connect him thanks and God bless ya

    Daniel

    ReplyDelete
  4. Good article. Mizo te hi kawng thenkhatah kan tlan chak lutuk a, a dangah kan backward leh lawi si. Balance dik deuh chu kan ngai ani.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Tha hle mai. Khatih hun laia i vision thenkhat chu hei a thleng tan ve mek a nia. Mahse thalai zingah chuan a negative impact hi a la langsar zawk rih em aw, ka ti...

    ReplyDelete
  6. i applaud u and anyone else w2ho think like this i too look forward to the day when we can step out from the massess and this cattle mentality that we have when we can stand up an say i am going to be different and forge my own path and have the courage and perseverence to do so...maybe one day we"ll be great

    ReplyDelete