Home Opinion Op-Ed Want to become a good citizen? Here’s the guide

Want to become a good citizen? Here’s the guide

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Saba Waqas |

How do countries develop and grow?

The answer is simple; their citizens painstakingly work hard and are diligent in achieving common goals for growth. There’s no magic theory for the countries which are advanced and progressing, it’s the untiring efforts of many generations over decades resulting in a gradual ascendency.

All of this is built on top of a majority that consists of honest and patriotic citizens. When citizens start putting self over national interest, then things tend to go south. Two major ingredients for becoming a devoted citizen in your own country are education and compassion. Rest comes along smoothly once you foster these in a society.

It is our duty to ensure all children around us get access to basic education and parents from a less privileged background are convinced that attending school over odd jobs is in their own interest.

Today, we see a confused environment around us, where personal interest reigns supreme without any connection to collective benefit. Personal growth is very important; however, it should not come at the cost of others. It’s a common practice among us to blame others for any drawback in our country, what we are missing here is our own role; are we being responsible? Are we following the rules? Are we the positive contributors?

There is no preset template for a good citizen, but there are some ascertained facts, if followed rightly, can go long way in setting individuals on the path of becoming one.

Read more: Rethinking the education paradigm – Saad Rasool

  • Education is the key for any nation’s progress. Education not only provides a whole new outlook towards life but it also fosters a better understanding of one’s reason to exist in this world. It thus nurtures one’s purpose of life and helps spread focus and positivity. Moreover, education contributes positively to the economy by generating a skilled workforce. It is our duty to ensure all children around us get access to basic education and parents from a less privileged background are convinced that attending school over odd jobs is in their own interest.
  • Take special care in protecting the environment by not throwing used articles on the go or littering. Consider your country as your home and make a priority to keep it clean. Single-use plastic needs to be reviewed and shopping bags be made out of recycled paper. If you use public washrooms, why make a mess, be an example to others and show them how to keep it clean and odorless. In the USA people are taught to clean up after eating, for example, you pick up your own plate, glasses and eating utensils and take them to the kitchen. You don’t throw trash on the street, or you will be fined. Small acts of hygiene become your innate habits which further contribute towards the cleanliness in your country.

Soldiers, traffic police, police in general, are fulfilling their duties to maintain peace in a country, therefore, it’s our moral obligation to respect them and give them their due honor and regard. Help others in a community.

  • Another essential duty as a citizen is to follow traffic rules. It brings harmony and discipline in a country. In our country driving license is easily available to a citizen without even passing a proper test which is actually the recipe for chaos out on the streets. In most developed countries, the standard of driving is set at an entry level – with the difficulty of obtaining a driving license being a good indicator of the general safety on the roads.
  • Pay your taxes as per the book. The money you pay in taxes goes as input to many sources. In addition to paying the salaries of government employees, your tax money also helps to support major public facilities, such as health and education. Tax money helps to ensure infrastructure such as the roads you travel on remain well-maintained and safe. Paying taxes solves many problems; the standard of living is majorly improved. Paying taxes is not optional and definitely not a burden but a duty.
  • Conserve water. A great threat we’ll soon be facing needs to be immediately fixed. The government needs to have a national policy and plan to store water. As a citizen it’s our duty to play our part and pay attention to daily routines like washing cars, taking extra-long showers, wasting water while doing laundry or dishes, we need to be very careful and frugal in water usage. Be mindful while using water. If we’ll be cautious now, then the future generation can have a better aspect of living or else it will be a barren landscape.

Read more: PM’s “Clean & Green Pakistan” campaign gets a boost from NBP

  • Don’t harm public property. These days it’s a common trend to harm buildings, cars, greenery etc. while protesting or venting anger in our part of the world. Besides being a barbaric act, it also propagates a negative perception about our country globally. We should stand united and refrain from harming our own assets. It’s a simple attitude; this is our state, these are our belongings, it’s our obligation to look after them and not destroy them.
  • Be fair in dealings. Whatever your job is insignificant or significant, try not to make a fool out of people, it will somehow or the other come back to you that you never have expected. Avoid trickery or deception at all cost.
  • Follow the queue. Wait for your turn, have patience. This might sound a small piece of advice but do remember prospering countries flourish due to adopting discipline and following rules and regulations in their everyday lives.
  • Lastly, I’ll focus on community relations. Respect each other especially those who are protecting our country. Soldiers, traffic police, police in general, are fulfilling their duties to maintain peace in a country, therefore, it’s our moral obligation to respect them and give them their due honor and regard. Help others in a community. Share, donate and do charity. All these deeds make up a whole better place to breathe in happily and freely.

Read more: Hundred days linking Good-Governance

Become a law-abiding citizen. Take pride in where you live. Strive to make it a better place by introducing small positive changes in your daily life. Let’s aspire to become an asset for our country.

Saba Waqas lives in Islamabad her interests are cooking, travelling, and exploring various cultures, additionally, she writes articles regarding social matters. The views expressed in this article are author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space. 


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