Narendra Modi’s Doublespeak: When Is The Rail Fare Hike Justified?

Posted on June 24, 2014 in Politics

By Shivangi Adani:

I am sure that none of us like people who do the opposite of what they say. The Prime Minister of India has managed to do that within less than a month of his term and the people are agitated. The Modi government has increased railway fares by 14.2 percent and freight rates by 6.5 percent.

However, in 2012, when the UPA Government had increased the railway freight rates bypassing the parliament, Narendra Modi was against this. In his March 7, 2012 tweet, Modi said, “Just before Rail Budget UPA has suddenly increased railway freight rates bypassing Parliament. Wrote to PM against this…Was the Central Government waiting for the results of the elections to five State Assemblies to impose an anti-people and anti-farmer policy?”

Modi tweet

Narendra Modi went against his words and followed the ways of the UPA Government. The citizens of the country are angry and worried about the increase in rates and rightfully so, because 14.2% increase in railway fares has been the largest of its kind in history. The Modi Government has increased the fares without giving an explanation to the people. He has left a huge communication gap between him and his supporters who have high expectations from him. Without saying why, how and when, the fares have been increased. The opposition has taken advantage of this and mocked him, and so have the angry citizens.

Digvijay Singh tweeted, “”Ab ki bar Double Speak Sarkar… Modi wrote a letter to PM in 2012 on the Rail fare hike! ACHHE DIN AA GAYE!”

“Yesterday, they were talking about common man, and today, they are burdening the same. The irony is that the same people when in opposition would critique the government when any economical decision was taken,” said the Congress leader, Manish Tewari.

TMC national spokesman Derek O Brien said: “Is this a super Rail budget before Rail budget? Not bothering about the Parliament… The prices of essential commodities will now shoot up. Before they came to power, they said acche din aane wale hain. But now it seems roney wale din aa gaye hain”.

His pre-election punchline “Ab Achhe Din Aanewaale hai” is being questioned. Was the “Achhe Din” just a fake promise made by him? Or are we all being judgmental without knowing the facts?

Arun Jaitely, the Finance Minister of India said, “India must decide whether it wants a world class Railway or a ramshackle one. The Railway minister has taken a difficult but a correct decision.”

True that all classes of India except the rich will be affected because of the increase in the prices but how can we expect development without paying for it? It is not less known that the Indian Railways were in tatters and have suffered great losses under the UPA Government.

Yes, this step taken by Narendra Modi goes against what he promised and does not appeal to the masses at this very moment. This step has agitated the lower classes and it will turn out to be hard in various sectors such as transportation in the short run. We may not have “Achhe Din” right now, but in the long run, this step may just save the Indian Railways from the mess it is in.

When Modi was elected as the Prime Minister of India, most of the citizens were rooting for fast change. People should remember that the “needed change” is not going to come immediately in a month. It will take time, hard decisions and patience. Whether this step will benefit us in the long run or not, only time will tell.