Events of ADRI (Patna - Ranchi)
Among the sections of the population in Bihar which was bypassed by the development process in various degrees, the Muslims form a major part. Although Muslims are not a homogeneous community in terms of their socio-economic characteristics, a majority of them suffers from the common problems of low income, widespread literacy and many other social, political, psychological and cultural disadvantages. Since they constitute no less than 17 percent of the population of Bihar, the overall progress of the state is not possible, without Muslims being integrated with the general population.
Unfortunately, even at the national level, there is currently no policy framework or guideline to address the predicaments of the Muslims, particularly the Muslim youth. Most national policies like those on population, education, gender issues or the very recent skill development, embrace an umbrella framework and refuse to even mention the need for a special focus on Muslims, leave alone identifying their specific needs. Over the years, this has ensured a practice of persistent denial to the Muslim population, resulting in their present seriously disadvantaged social and economic status. Since Bihar has a substantial Muslim population, this policy void has serious implications for the state's development strategy.
In order to address the development needs and growth deficit of Muslims youths in Bihar, it is first necessary to know their present socio-economic status and identify the disadvantages and discriminations they face in various spheres. In this background, at the request of the United Nations Fund Population Action (UNFPA), the Asian Development Research Institute (ADRI), Patna is planning a study which has the following objectives -(a) Profiling Muslim youth in Bihar,(b) Assess the appropriateness and effectiveness of major state policies (population policy, women empowerment policy, education policy, skills policy etc.) in addressing the growth deficit amongst the Muslim youth, (c) Assess the efficacies of existing government programmes and entitlements in addressing the needs of Muslim youth, and (d) Understand and document the needs and demand of Muslim youth through consultations.
The basic purpose of the two-day Workshop is to prepare the outlines of the methodology for the proposed study. Apart from identifying the set of indicators that could describe the socio-economic status of Muslim youth in Bihar, the methodology should also indicate the qualitative dimensions of their socio-economic profile. Further, the Workshop should also prepare the guidelines for the consultations that the research team plans to hold with the Muslim population in general and its youth section in particular.
On Day 1 of the Workshop,its Inaugural Session will be attended by a number of scholars, administrators and members of the civil society. On Day 2, a small group of people (again scholars, administrators and members of civil Society) will interact in the Workshop to prepare the methodological base of the proposed study.