By Richa Priyanka:
26th of July will mark the completion of two months of the Modi government in power. Although it is too soon to change anythingÂ in India, millions have already started wondering if good days lie ahead. The bruised Indian hearts, beaten and bashed under the corrupt political leaders, holding their hopes high, repeat, analyse and criticize the BJP’s slogan, “Acche din aa gye..”.
Unable to enjoy the 100 days relaxation period, that the media calls as “the honeymoon period”, the party took some remarkable steps marking the presence of a strong leadership at the centre. No wonder Narendra Modi is under such serious scrutiny, with the hope he’s generated in the diversified mass of a nation like India.
Taking a look at the Modi’s governance so far, here are some of the beneficial steps taken in various departments that did and are to do well for India, in the days to come.
1. Foreign Relations
Right from the time of his oath taking ceremony, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is affix on strengthening foreign relations, as he begun by inviting all the leaders of SAARC including Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Maldives, Bhutan and Afghanistan for the occasion.
A few days later, he visited Bhutan giving out a message that he values the neighboring countries the most.Â What followed is the sixth BRICS summit, where he met the leaders of Brazil, Russia, China, and Indonesia. The first BRICS leader is to be from India, and after the summit, all were found stressing on their relations with India. Owing to his natural charm, Modi influenced all the leaders in the summit.
2. Less government, more (ordered) governance
As soon as he came to power, an order was brought in the cabinet. The cabinet work starts at sharp nine a.m. and the work allocated to different ministries come with a sharp deadline. Moreover, Modi has ordered the ministers not to hand pick their staff, and to avoid involving relatives. The style of governance, under the Modi’s model of “less government, more governance”, has brought an end to the chaotic decision making scheme under the UPA government where the Prime Minister had little role to play in crucial decisions. Most of the party’s decisions have a final say from Modi, hence reforming the role of the leader of the nation.
3. Bold steps
In spite of all the scrutiny the government was put under, the very start of the governance reflects the willingness of the government to take bold steps for the good of the mass.
The Indian Railways, crying for funds, needed the much criticised price hike in order to maintain certain standards. Â The Prime Minister did not hesitate in hiking the petrol prices because of the on-going crisis in Iraq, hence taking a bold step not for the sake of winning more and more elections, but for surviving the crisis we might face.
Another such bold step was the HRD’s involvement in the termination of the Four Year Undergraduate Programme. The decision might have been received with wide protests and criticism, but it was an act necessary for improving the quality of education in India.
4. The Union Budget 2014-15
The Union Budget 2014-15 introduced several steps to curb inflation. A consultant economist, B Yerram Raju says, “The Union Budget has set the tone for economic reforms by announcing measures such as moving from government to governance, simplifying of tax regime, giving boost to the agriculture sector, allowing FDI in select sectors”. While addressing a group of students on an “Overview of Budget, focus on SMEs and Opportunities” at G Pulla Reddy Engineering College, he termed the Budget as “progressive, futuristic and dynamic”.
5. Other Remarkable Steps
The successful evacuation of several Indians caught up in the wartime privations in Iraq, is because ofÂ the cautious approach of the external affairs ministry and the evacuation plan of the government that involved knocking on the doors of various nations in South Asia, like Saudi Arabia and Syria.
Swach Bharat, a plan that tributes Mahatma Gandhi, aims at the building of more than 800 million toilets and the setting up of modern sewage systems all across India.
Having learnt a lesson from the last time’s health care plans, the BJP has announced National Health Assurance Mission with a clear mandate to provide accessible and affordable healthcare.
But not even the flamboyance of the majority party headed by such an efficient man as Narendra Modi came without little blemishes that it could not hide long.
1. One man show
The cabinet selection was done mostly single handedly by the Prime Minister, as not even the senior leaders had a clue until the last moment about the composition of his ministry. The cabinet, chosen by Modi, shows clearly how he has backed himself with all his close leaders like Arun Jaitley, Amit Shah, and Smriti Irani, who were all chosen upfront in place of more experienced ministers standing for the same position.
2. The Ganga Rejuvenation Plan
As per Modi’s plan to pay his respects to Ganga, a new department was opened for its management, but stands non-functional to date. “An inter-ministerial group is meeting over the issue and they have also formed a committee of secretaries, headed by secretary of the water resources ministry, to devise a roadmap in a month for cleaning the Ganga river. But if someone expects a secretary-level officer to do all planning work then it is wrong. It would be carried out by a commissioner-level official, but that can only be done once that notification comes out,” a senior water resources ministry official commented. “At present, all the departments related to Ganga cleaning are under the environment ministry. So, on ground, neither the environment ministry is able to do anything, nor the water ministry.”
Crores of rupees have been spent on the Ganga rejuvenation in India, but the plight of the river continues.
3. Ignoring seniors in the party
Not including senior leaders like Lal Krishna Advani and Murli Mnohar Joshi and instead stepping up someone as inexperienced as Smriti Irani for the post of Human Resource Minister is a serious disrespect and a decision much criticized.
4. Black Money Hoarding in India
No effective plans were set to stop the hoarding of black money of Indians in the Swiss banks. While some party leaders continue giving non realizable statements like bringing all of the black money back in the country by the end of the year, no serious step is taken for the insurance of the act.
Also, a great deal of black money is hiding in the form of assets that the corrupt leaders and government workers have accumulated over time. A very small fraction of the Indian population pays the right amount of income tax, and the need of the hour is to regulate it.
5. Deviation from Campaign Statements
One serious deviation from his campaign statement comes with the continuing price hikes in the country. As much as he ridiculed the UPA’s inability to stabilize the economy, his govt’s planning also fails do so any time soon.
As the good points out rule the deficiencies in the governance so far, the hope for the good days ahead continues. With numerous plans coming up, and the repeated promises of the Modi government to develop India and to restore its economic glory, we await the beautiful times ahead.