Young twentysomethings are shaping our world as much as the United Nations, Central and state governments
In a dramatic and portentous address, Prime Minister Narendra Modi warned the world in an ominous tone of the twin dangers of unbridled mushrooming of cryptocurrencies and social media; and the dangers when they work not to strengthen but undermine democracy as seen recently. Hours later, crypto-supporting hackers took fleeting control of the official Twitter handle of the Prime Minister’s Office, before, fortuitously, the government wrested back its legitimate control.
The irony of the episode, when a group of hackers, perhaps Indian, and maybe operating from within India, took control of the most powerful and significant of social media handles, highlighted the massive victory of the Modi government in taking technology to everyday lives and common people.
Mr Modi’s dictum of deploying a tech-based transformation of government, harnessing the Aadhaar as a platform to fool-proof direct cash transfers and bring in digital payments have borne silent fruit.
The hacking incident, an unimpeachable crime, showcased how, beyond the governments, society has taken to technology to improve their lives.
Technology is staring, without blinking an eye, at society, at sovereign governments, at the world, warning every conventional pillar of power that it has its own willed universe, beyond writs of governments, where neither the monopoly of a Central bank to issue a currency nor of a ban on a work of art or news prevents it from making it accessible. Geographic borders are porous at places, but in a virtual world, borders are almost a joke. When thinking about censorship, bans, policies, rules, governments must heed the power of people armed with disrupting technology, on steroids, we must all realise the outer limits of what cannot be policed, or denied to people anymore.
Young twentysomethings are shaping our world as much as the United Nations, Central and state governments, and while we must be on guard against its implications to harm and mislead, we must stand in awe, and feel hopeful, at the true power of youth and intelligence, which is truly reimagining the world. And our times.