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- Tapati Baruah Kashyap

At the Millennium World Peace Summit held under the auspices of United Nations in New York in 2000, leaders who gathered from every nook and corner of the world reaffirmed their faith in the United Nations in improving global peace. The Millennium World Peace Summit unequivocally condemned violence and sought to play a decisive role in reducing conflicts, poverty and ensure environmental protection as priority.

Peace is the most precious term in a situation where violence is rampant and chronic violence is the order of life. What is peace then? If we ask ourselves the question then we feel that when each individual of a society can live with satisfaction without hindering to others then an atmosphere of peace can prevail in every ones heart. So peace is a most sought after term not easy to create and but opted by everyone.

How can peace be achieved in an atmosphere of constant restlessness? Peace can be created on the edifice of justice. When every individual has mental satisfaction and when each one can live freely and fearlessly then every good thing is possible in that situation. In an environment of peace, every good thing is possible for humanity at large. People can work collectively for greater benefit and their wish in any field can be satisfied since the whole atmosphere is people friendly.

The major hindrance for the peaceful condition in a society is violence. The threat of insurgency in the northeastern region of the country now appears to be a major challenge in the present situation. Violence can not create a peaceful social atmosphere since every individual is tense, fearful and desperate for a peaceful existence.

If we look at the victims of violence then we feel that they are the victims for ever and they are not only crippled physically but also crippled mentally. The victims and their familys mental suffering or the agony cannot be explained or realized unless one himself becomes a victim. Moreover in a peace-less situation, no positive development can be possible. Economic activities fail to progress and that results in low level of employment opportunities for the people in general and educated youths in particular. And in this social atmosphere lawlessness is to be seen everywhere and the overall development is not possible. When there is no stability in human values cannot be preached and the utter lawlessness indirectly adds to mental instability and insecurity of the common masses.

What are the real needs to curb violence in todays situation? How is it possible? A society is nothing but a residing place of many individual beings. So human society consists of human beings and to be a good and prosperous human society it needs to incorporate better human beings. To trace the root of any problem or threat in a society requires judging or looking into the inner self of human beings belonging to that particular society.

The whole northeast is a confluence of different cultures and ethnic groups. Themajor threat now is that there is no common dialogue amongst them. Each group is looking for its own identity, not for a common identity. As a result clashes amongst them are very often noticeable. Of course all these clashes imparts violence thereby contributing peacelessness to our social set up. If we look into the northeastern states then we feel that although violence is going on in several states yet peace can be created on justice. If we look to states like Mizoram, which indeed reeled under several decades of violence, we can easily gauge how much development is possible once peace returns. Peace has brought social and political stability to Mizoram, and the state has achieved the highest literacy rate in the entire country, while individuals too have recorded wonderful achievements in various fields. Literacy having gone up, Mizoram has also recorded better human development indices.

What really harms our present society is the lack of awareness and education. When an individual is not educated he or she can not have the power to discern the right from the wrong. They can easily fall prey to any divisive, anti-social and inhuman forces irrespective of caste and creed. Thereby they can contribute to different anti-social and destructive forces of society and thus in different levels of society, corruption can be generated easily.

Peace can be seen from two perspectives- peace at an individual level and peace in collective sense that implies the ultimate peaceful nature of a society. But both the perspectives are interrelated. To achieve collective peace, peace at individual level must be achieved and that needs to be realized first.

For the integration of diverse ethnic groups some initiatives need to be made. People should be aware of their duties as well as their rights. The right awareness about each of the individuals existence can only create a peaceful social atmosphere. Tolerance is one of the positive qualities and it should be a common goal for diverse ethnicity. For peace at individual level certain individual qualities should be practiced. When an individual is educated then every positive development is possible.

When an individual possesses positive qualities his personal growth can be possible and thereby healthy contributions can be made to society for peace. And to resolve any conflict at individual level, one must look into ones inner self at first.

Peace must be for a gendered society. Women are often considered to be the vulnerable section of a society. So, women should also come forward to express their feelings, anguish and decision in a society. If women could get the opportunity to participate with their male counterparts the gap between both the sexes can be eliminated and the empowerment of women can then be possible, which is one of the urgent needs of our society. As Betty Williams, the Nobel peace Laureate from Northern Ireland in the Millennium World Peace Summit held in New York stated that War is essentially mans work. Now move over. Women will ensure peace.

Every good work of a society should be balanced with the power of vision. Since our present generation will be replaced by the young generation after a short period, so the society needs to improve the present condition of children in and around our society. The children are the peace zones of a society. The more we invest with this generation, the better result we can achieve in future. For our better tomorrow, we must try to better the today of our children.