After a grand build-up through the month, and detailed reportage on their achievements, it was time again to honour 30 high fliers under the age of 30 from the northern region at the third annual HT Youth Forum in Chandigarh on Friday.
From across Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Himachal Pradesh and J&K, achievers from diverse fields — from cinema to academics, fashion to social work and sports, et al — the 'Top 30 Under 30' were chosen with an eye on performance as well as potential.
While Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal joined the audience, Union I&B minister Manish Tewari was on the panel that brainstormed the topic 'Indian youth: Change-seeker or change-maker?'.
On the discussion panel, Congress leader Tewari was joined by fellow MP from the SAD Harsimrat Kaur Badal, actors Richa Chadda and Ayushmann Khurrana, Olympic champion shooter Abhinav Bindra and Miss India-World 2013 Navneet Kaur Dhillon.
Optimism marked the discussion, though the panelists did dwell on cynicism being an undercurrent in young India.
Tewari called for a "common minimum agenda of turning the 21st century into India's century". Badal pointed out, "The youth is not cynical. They are dissatisfied. Yes they are dissatisfied with their leadership… (But) For a cleaner and accountable government, the people need to realise the power of each vote."