The report, commissioned by the British Council and conducted by the Nielsen research company, drew a picture of a deeply frustrated young generation that feels abandoned by its government and despondent about its future.
An overwhelming majority of young Pakistanis say their country is headed in the wrong direction, the report said, and only 1 in 10 has confidence in the government. Most see themselves as Muslim first and Pakistani second, and they are now entering a work force in which the lion’s share cannot find jobs, a potentially volatile situation if the government cannot address its concerns.
The young people were civic-minded, with a third saying the purpose of education was to create good citizens. They were also more interested in collective action and volunteer activities than their parents. But they were deeply disillusioned with politics, which they saw as corrupt and based on a system in which personal connections mattered more than merit.
“These are the facts. They might be cruel, but we have to admit them.”
~ Faisal Subzwari, minister of youth affairs for Sindh Province, who attended the presentation of the report in Lahore.