๐—š๐˜†๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ป๐—ด โ€“ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฆ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฎ๐—น๐—น ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜๐—ต ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด

In another historic moment in Bhutanโ€™s annals, the National Assembly (NA) and National (NC) adopted the Gyalsung Bill 2022; the former on November 7 and the latter November 8, 2022. While the first batch of Gyalsung is expected to commence in 2024, Bhutanese, youth and parents are excited about it.

Tshering Yangden, 15, from Lungo village, Laya who stopped studying after primary school heard of the Gyaslung Program in 2019. Despite the fact that she was unaware of the specific types of training, she expressed excitement about joining the program. She said, โ€œI would gain skills that will benefit in my life.โ€

Rinchen Zangmo, a student of Motithang Higher Secondary School, Thimphu said, โ€œItโ€™s a good opportunity to take part in the Gyalsung, where all youth can develop multi-tasking skills.โ€ She stated that learning military skills will not only help to secure the countryโ€™s security, but will also provide intangible qualities such as leadership, comradery, discipline, and determination.

Jangchu Lhayang from Druk School said it would be a great moment to meet people from different parts of the country. โ€œWe will know each other, make new friends and network. Imagine how united, we will be.โ€

Sujil, another school dropout who works in one of Thimphuโ€™s private firms, expressed excitement about the Gyalsung program.โ€I thought I would not get the opportunity to join the program as I did not study until class 12,โ€ he said.

โ€œI would like to thank His Majesty for the equal opportunity.โ€

A class 11 student from Shaba Higher Secondary School, Paro, Tashi Tobden, said that upon hearing of the mandatory Gyalsung service, most of the youth are excited. โ€œI would like to thank His Majesty for providing an incredible opportunity once in a lifetime to serve the nation,โ€ he said.

He said that His Majesty is constantly concerned about youth, and therefore youth must get prepared with the changing times for the countryโ€™s sovereignty, adding that it is the best way to learn further which youths are lagging in many aspects.

โ€œBeing called for the Gyalsung program, it will enhance our patriotism and build our future. This is the best platform to serve the Tsa-Wa-Sum,โ€ Tashi Tobden said.

Choki Wangmo, 16, studying in class 10, Phuentsholing Higher Secondary School said that she was also literally excited hearing the announcement of the Gyalsung program, and she is excited to join the training soon.

She said, โ€œGyalsung National Service is a golden opportunity once in a lifetime for all youth to serve the country. I would like to express my gratitude to His Majesty for bringing such a noble vision for the country.โ€

According to Swayam Giri, a class 10 student at Peljorling Higher Secondary School in Samtse, the Gyalsung program will provide a wide range of knowledge and skills that will benefit both youth and the country.

โ€œI feel very fortunate that I will be a part of the Gyalsung program and to have a Gyalsung Academic close to my home,โ€ he added.

A class 11 science student from the same school, Namgay Wangmo, expressed gratitude for Royal initiatives where youth can explore skills.

Meanwhile, Nima Wangmo, a class 12 Arts student at the same school, expressed interest in joining Gyalsung because it would provide her with life skills she did not have before.โ€Through Gyalsung, one can learn good values,โ€ she said.

Tshewang Phuntsho, a class 12 student from Jakar Higher Secondary School, Bumthang, is worried if current class 12 students would also get the opportunity as most of them would be crossing the age limit of 18.

โ€œThough Gyalsung would be benefiting, I may not get the chance to join,โ€ he said.

Jamyang Choden, class 10, from Yadi Central School, Mongar said that Gyalsung is a national service program for the youth of Bhutan. โ€œIt will encourage youth to be strong, independent thinkers and capable to serve the nation, bringing the youth of Bhutan together in a shared experience and act as an agent of change,โ€ she said.

Dechen Pelden from Mongar Higher Secondary School studying in class 11 said that Gyalsung program is to upgrade different skills needed to succeed in 21st century.
โ€œThe benefit that I foresee is shaping the youth with skills that will contribute towards economic development of the country,โ€ Dechen Pelden said.

Parents are excited. โ€œI want my daughter to meet new people from around the country. Imagine the diversity. Further, they will learnt several aspects that our children today need to know,โ€ a working mother said.

The Gyalsung Training was originally scheduled to begin in 2022.Though construction works were initiated for the infrastructure of the five Gyalsung Academies across the country, the pandemic has delayed the construction as it hampered the import of construction materials as well as the recruitment of skilled expatriate manpower. With the end of the pandemic and the reopening of the country, preparatory works are being expedited.

With the enactment of the Gyalsung Act, the establishment of the institutions, systems, rules, and regulations, and the activation of processes will follow that necessarily have to precede the launch of Gyalsung Training.

As per the command of His Majesty, Dasho (PhD) Sonam Kinga, a member of the National Service Core Working Group, introduced the Gyalsung Bill of the Kingdom of Bhutan 2022 in the Parliament. The vision of Gyalsung was announced during the Royal Address of the 112th National Day in 2019.

Members of Parliament expressed their appreciation to His Majesty the King for allowing them to debate the bill during their tenure.

While there were some clarifications sought on specific clauses, the Houses unanimously adopted the Bill.

The Bill will be submitted to Druk Gyalpo for Royal Assent in accordance with Article 13 (6) of the Constitution of the Kingdom of Bhutan.

Sangay Rabten from Thimphu