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‘People changing views on jobs’

The country is being gradually conditioned to shed their inbred attitudes towards various jobs under the government’s food production and development drive, Api Wawamu Rata Nagamu program for economic development, Labour Relations and Manpower Minsiter Athauda Seneviratne said.

He added that the people have reacted positively to Api Wawamu Rata Nagamu program , which has been evident from their contributions to the program since its inception.

He said, there are many high-income jobs in the country , but the people are reluctant to take these jobs because of various common social concepts that have marked them as “lesser jobs.”

This is the result of lack of recognition and respect the people have for these jobs , he explained.

“The country has a large number of high-wage job opportunities in the field of skill based technical jobs . But unfortunately we do not get enough manpower to meet such job demands because our men and women shun them because of the lack of job respect attached to them,” said Seneviratna.

Asked to elaborate on his point, the Minister said, ”In short, we do not like to be called as “farmers ”because we have conceptualized farming as a lesser occupation.”

“The situation is expected to change under Api Wawamu Rata Nagamu,” he said.

“The government intends to establish due recognition for those jobs that have so far been overlooked by the public,” he said.

“We believe that if the government carried Api Wawamu Program for two years at a stretch, it would pave the way to get an increased demand for those jobs which people refuse to accept today on account of their being perceived with negativity by the public,” he stressed.

Commenting on the food production plans of the program, the Minister said that it will be important for the country to give equal consideration to protect every step to protect the environment while it makes progress in economic development.

According to recent scientific research, 390 000 cubic meters of carbon dioxide is released to the atmosphere in every second while 710 cubic meters of oxygen is reduced from it simultaneously , said Minister Seneviratne.

“It is essential that we follow the path of “green productivity” to prevent this situation, which is one of the most highlighted aspect in Api Wawamu Rata Nagamu campaign, he said.

He said,the people will have to change their cultivation methods and also eating habits. “We cannot develop this country by growing Croton plants and going to the market to buy curry leaves (karapincha) to cook a meal.”

“Today we are taught by various TV channels, what to eat. Those cultivate vegetables do so by using chemical fertilizer and the soil.”

If we continued this way, soon we shall see that there will be not even a tadpole playing in our water streams, he said. As pointed out by Seneviratna, of the challenges faced by Sri Lanka after its victory over terrorism, protecting the environment is considered paramount.

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