Adopt 'Happiness index': Agatha Sangma

Agantha

Union Minister Agatha Sangma today said India should adopt the 'Gross National Happiness' (GNH) to measure the social progress as adopted by countries like the UK and Bhutan.

At a conference observing the 'International day of Peace' here, she said that adoption of the happiness index would ensure that citizens live a more balanced life and they find contentment in things they do rather than the Gross National Product (GNP).

The GNH measures the quality of a country in more holistic way (than GNP) and believes that the beneficial development of human society takes place when material and spiritual development occurs side by side to complement and reinforce

each other, according to the official Gross National Happiness website of the government of Bhutan.

The concept of GNH was first announced by Bhutan king Jigme Singye Wangchuck in 1972 declaring it to be more important than GNP, and from then on Thimpu oriented its policy and development plans towards GNH.

"There is a need to inculcate in our youth a sense of contentment to get rid of various social ills and imbalances," the minister of state for rural development said, adding that the reason for violence and various social ills was because there was so much imbalances socially.

Advocating a change in the education system, Sangma said, "Modern education gives us access to good job materially but does not teach us to find contentment in things we do."

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