SHILLONG, July 05: Religion and politics should be personal matters and should not be talking points day in and day out as this will not help India progress as was pointed out by the former Governor of Meghalaya, Ranjit Shekhar Mooshahary.
“The difference between India and other countries is that we have mixed too much of politics and religion. We have mixed politics and religion too much, everywhere we talk about religion and everywhere we talk of politics,” he said.
Mooshahary was addressing an award ceremony to honour media personalities from the region organized by the University of Science & Technology, Meghalaya (USTM) as part of its USTM PR Day held at Guwahati on Thursday.
“Where religion and politics have become the topic of discussion day in and day out that country has not progress and not likely to progress. I think these priorities we have to really reconsider,” he said.
Stating that so many temples, mosques and churches have come up, Mooshahary however said, “The more the temples, the more the mosques, the more the churches, I think we are really going down, the humility is disappearing, the sense of compassion is no longer there with us.”
Asserting that religion and politics should be personal matters, he pointed out that the happiest countries are those who have been able to keep politics and religion to themselves without discussing in public.
Also stating that education is the backbone of social change, the former governor however said the main reason why India is remaining where it is today is because of the failure to improve the educational standard of universities, colleges and schools.
He said instead of inculcating character building, responsibility and accountability in the students – we are more interested in inculcating skills. “That (skills) is important no doubt but then what happens, do we want machines to produce something or human beings?” he asked while adding, “USTM is a big university but I feel in all academic institutions we need to stress on character building which is an essential subject to be taught – we don’t need religious motivation.”
Pointing out that the media has a great role to reform the society, Mooshahary however said that social media is becoming destructive and the trend has to change.
“The more we progress in science and technology, the lower the human being we are becoming. But while we progress more, I think the basic humanity has to be checked,” he added.
Mahbubul Hoque, the Chancellor of USTM, stated that it has been a challenging journey for USTM which began with only six students in 2011 and now the University takes pride to have more than 5,000 students. The University has adopted a holistic approach for social development, besides its consistent mission towards development of individuals and the society in the field of education. The University’s outreach programmes and activities are gradually being expanded to reach those areas and people requiring support and assistance. “We are placing the University Progress Report in front of media and other dignitaries in this USTM PR Day”, he said.
Later, the former governor also conferred the awards to honour media personalities from the region recognizing their contribution in the field of News Media giving legitimacy to people’s voice and augmenting the role of media as the “Fourth Estate”.
This year’s USTM Media Excellence Award went to four media stalwarts of the region: Zarir Hussain, Chief Managing Editor, News Live Television; Dileep Chandan; Editor, Asom Bani; Samudra Gupta Kashyap, veteran journalist and author and Maini Mahanta, Editor, Nandini.
The USTM Media Achiever Award-2018 went to eight senior journalists from the region. They are: Sujit Chakraborty, Special Correspondent, IANS, Tripura; Satyanarayan Misra, Staff Reporter, Dainik Purvoday; Imtiaz Ahmed, Senior Reporter, The Telegraph, Guwahati; Monmoromi Mahanta, Journalist, Prag Channel; Mridul Haloi, Sub Editor, Dainik Janambhumi; Aafaque Hussain, Staff Reporter, The Shillong Times; Tinakali Sumi, Senior Sub Editor, Nagaland Post and Evanjoplin Dkhar, Senior Reporter, Meghalaya Guardian, Shillong.