75 Reasons Why I will REMEMBER Modi government

  • This essay gives 75 hits & 19 misses of Modi government. It includes Foreign Policy, Macro-economics, Inflation, National Security, Infrastructure, Make in India, Education, Culture & Digitization.

In 2019 I wrote 30 reasons why I would remember Modi govt so decided to do one before 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

 

Note that the period from 2019 onwards was difficult for India, what with Covid outbreak in March 2020, Russia Ukraine and Hamas Israeli wars.

 

Modi2 strategy is restore Civilizational pride, macro-economic stability, inflation control, digitization (use of technology), infrastructure building, support entrepreneurship & manufacturing and welfare schemes.

 

Format for Hits and Misses is title, matter and link. In case missed out points send matter with source links. Tried to be as factual as possible, rest you decide.

 

Since the essay is long, to read in PDF without pictures, click on PDF.

 

HITS (not in order of priority)

1. Modification of Article 370 and Scrapping Art 35A  

Killings by terrorists continue though at irregular intervals but even the government’s worst critics might agree that the situation has improved. 

 

Read  Why this was a good step

 

We must express gratitude to Team Tushar Mehta for presenting facts so well in the Supreme Court such that the Apex Court confirmed scrapping of 35A and modification of 370. 

 

2. Construction of Ram Mandir and Pran Pratishta in January 2024

Those who attended say Pran Pratishta was a once in a life time experience.

 

Read  Experience of Ayodhya Ram Mandir Pran Pratishtha

ICCR organized the International Ramayana Mela in January 2024 Countries having a Ramayana tradition (essentially Southeast Asia) were invited. Converting Ramayana into a foreign policy tool comes through pride in Bharatiya culture.

 

3. Global Buddhist Summit 2023

This summit reaffirmed India’s deep civilization links with Buddhist Darsana and is probably a first. It was attended by delegates from 30 countries.

 

Read  On the trail of Buddha – A journey to the East

 

4. Opening of Kartarpur Corridor in 2019

Kartarpur in Pakistan is where Guru Nanak Dev spent the last eighteen years of his life. It is a visa free corridor meaning Indians can cross over into Pakistan through a dedicated corridor, do darshan and return.

 

See album of Nankana Sahib where Guru Nanak was born

 

5. Soon to open BAPS Mandir in Abu Dhabi

A temple of this grandeur was unbelievable in the Middle East. Thanks to improved relations with the UAE, personal equations with the Ruler and efforts of BAPS this will soon become a reality. Shekhar Gupta captured impact of this temple opening well in a video.

 

6. Global Ayurvedic Centre, Jamnagar Gujarat

Bringing Ayurveda as part of the WHO global centre for traditional medicine was good.

 

Read  Why this Global Ayurvedic Centre is good news for India

 

The government has continued to promote International Yog Diwas as an international event.

 

7. Raising pride in Bharatiya Culture through restoration of temples

Renovating and making of temple corridors at Kedarnath, Mahakal Ujjain and Kashi Vishwanath.

 

Read   About Mahakaleshwar Temple and Corridor

 

8. Getting Indians back from War Zones

In 2023 Indians were brought back from Sudan (Operation Kaveri). In 2022 students returned from Ukraine (Operation Ganga), 2021 from Afghanistan (Operation Dev Shakti) and Vande Bharat Mission during Covid . During Modi government 1, in 2015 it was Operation Rahaat in Yemen and Operation Maitri in Nepal. Thank you India Today for reports and access.

 

9. The Arabian Peninsula is India’s sphere of influence

Post the Houthi attacks on ships in Red Sea area and Somalia pirates attacks, Indian Navy moved in to rescue captured souls (irrespective of nationality).

 

Read Red Sea crisis: Indian Navy increases presence in region N India deploys naval might near Red Sea to rein in piracy N Indian Navy deploys in Indian Ocean Region   

 

India’s actions imply that the Indian Ocean Region is an area of interest. It also indicates that India has outgrown its Pakistan obsession.   

 

10. Speaking to countries who do not see eye to eye

India is keeping doors of communication open with Iran (Shia) and its adversaries UAE and Saudi Arabia (Sunni). Ditto for Russia vs. USA.

 

This requires deft handling of international relations. Appreciate efforts of Team Dr S Jaishankar (Minister of External Affairs).

 

11. G20 meetings across nation, not restricted to Delhi, thus showcasing India

It promotes federalism and tourism. Besides that, India’s diversity is seen. 

Mysore Palace lit during Dussehra. 

12. Successful organization of G20 Meeting in Delhi and sharing a Declaration. No mean achievements given the tensions on Ukraine. African Union being made a permanent member of G20 was India’s initiative.

 

Read  India’s G20 Presidency: Diplomatic Achievement of 2023

 

Appreciate the efforts of Team Amitabh Kant and MEA.

 

13. In the Pacific Islands an Indian counter to China

So far India has responded to Chinese moves. This time PM Modi visited Papa New Guinea to meet with Heads of State of the Pacific island countries.

 

Playing to our strengths “India announced a development-oriented 12-step ‘Action Plan to Strengthen India-Pacific Island Partnership at the third summit meeting of the Forum for India-Pacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC). The Action Plan includes a project in each of the Pacific islands countries to develop the small and medium enterprises sector. Knowing well the needs of the islanders, there is also a lot of focus on quick impact projects in the health sector in the Action Plan. Desalination units in each of these small nations have also been assured by India in the Action Plan, among other things.” MoneyControl.com  

 

Read In the Pacific Islands an Indian counter to China

 

14. Import of Hydro-electric power from Nepal

During the visit of Nepal PM Prachananda in June 2023, India agreed to buy 10,000 MW of power of Nepal during the next ten years. Source

 

This would give Nepal the much needed revenue and India renewable energy, a win-win for bothIndia also recently agreed that Nepal could export power to Bangladesh through India.  

 

15. Russian Oil

India was able to navigate a complex geopolitical equation by importing cheap crude from Russia, converting it into petrol and diesel and exporting the same to the West without inviting western sanctions.

 

16. Promoting Tourism - Beaches of Lakshwadeep and Jaipur

A visit to the island by PM Modi and his videos on social media was enough to promote the island. Not a word was spoken but Maldivians got the message that working against India’s interests comes at a price.

 

Similarly, inviting French President Macron to visit Jaipur and getting Divya Kumari (Deputy CM) and member of royal family to escort him to the Amber Fort was a nice way of promoting Jaipur. Wish they had also taken him to Chand Baori, a wonder of the world.

Chand Baori, step-well, is about 2 hours from Jaipur  

Hope government promotes India aggressively, beyond the Golden Triangle.

 

Read  There is more to India than the Taj N Best Beaches of India N Best Beaches in Maharashtra

 

17. Netaji Subhash Bose statue at India Gate

In 2022 Netaji’s statue was placed, a tribute to the man who contributed to India’s independence. 

 

Read  How Bose’s Indian National Army contributed to India’s Independence

 

18. Statue of Unity

While it was inaugurated towards the end of 2018, so strictly not part of MG2 it has since then been developed into a sought-after tourist destination. Building it from scratch was not easy. Friends who visited in 2021 loved it. I visited in 2020 and liked it esp. the Light and Sound Show.

 

Read Statue of Unity will do for Kevatia what Rann Utsav did for Kutch  N Album Statue of Unity

 

ECONOMY

19. Macro-economic stability

The Union Finance Ministry today said India’s growth is sustainable due to growing macroeconomic stability on various fronts including improved current account deficit, robust banks and easing inflation pressure. Fortune India

 

If one compares current situation with UPA2 then macro-instability was caused by fiscal expansion, high crude and food support prices, 2013 run on the rupee, phone banking, banking sector problems, high inflation and over-leveraging.

 

Conversely, stability has helped India pull through the difficult years of 2019 to 2021.

 

20. Taming CPI inflation

According to this Hindustan Times chart above, rate was 10.1% in 2012-13, 6.1% in 2022-23 and expected to be (as per RBI projection) 5.4% in 2024-25. 

 

Ashok Gulati wrote in the Indian Express, “The Modi government has surely done a much better job by holding the inflation rate at 5.1 per cent vis-à-vis Manmohan Singh’s period when it averaged at 8.1 per cent.”

 

The government realized that high inflation rates and Ram Mandir cannot go hand in hand. A first is introduction of subsidized Bharat Atta and Rice.

 

21. Increase in Capital Expenditure

During Covid many said give incentives to India Inc or doles to public like President Biden did. Instead, this government has consistently focused on increasing capital outlay.  

Courtesy Hindustan Times

It was 3% in 2016-17, 3.6% in 2021-22, 4.3% in 2023-24RE. 

 

22. Number of Tax Returns filed

Courtesy Hindustan Times

It was 33.1 million in FY14, 63.3 million in FY19, 74 million in FY23. HT says that app two third of returns filed were Nil returns and the top seven states account for 60% of the non-zero ahead.

 

23. Fiscal Deficit % and Central government Debt as a % of GDP

Courtesy Hindustan Times.

Year

FD%

CG Debt%

2013-14

4.5

39.4

2019-20

4.6

41.4

2023-24 RE

5.8

51.2

2024-25 BE

5.1

51.3

While increase in FD and CG debt can be attributed to Covid19 there is a need to bring down the debt to GDP ratio. A high ratio makes economy vulnerable.

 

24. High Public Debt as a % of GDP

Noted economist Sajjid Chinoy wrote in the Indian Express, “Public debt to GDP is expected to increase from around 81 per cent of GDP to 83 per cent. That India’s consolidated deficit is too large for peace times and will continue to weigh adversely on debt dynamics if not brought down. This is because even as the Centre was committed to reducing its fiscal deficit from 6.4 per cent of GDP last year to 5.9 per cent in 2023-24, state deficits are on course to widening (from 2.8 per cent of GDP to 3.1 per cent or even wider), such that the consolidated fiscal deficit will stay close to 9 per cent of GDP.”

 

States have to reduce debt too. Freebies and opting for the old pension will increase debt levels.

 

25. IAF Orders increasing domestic production (Business Standard Sept19, 2023 editorial)

“The remaining 40 C-295 medium transport aircraft will be manufactured and assembled at Vadodra in collaboration with Tata Advanced Systems Ltd. This will galvanize the development of India’s aerospace ecosystem.” Not to forget orders for Tejas Mark 1 and 1A fighters. 

 

26. Infrastructure

This requires labour, cement and steel, the first generates employment and others demand in core sectors of the economy. Savings in travel time reduces logistics and working capital cost. Some infrastructure projects are below.

Mumbai Trans Harbour Link was conceived in the 1960s, opened in 2024.

B. Mumbai Delhi Expressway – said to reduce travel time from 24 to 12 hours. 

 

Read Multiplier effect of more expressways

 

C. Sela Pass Tunnel (complete 2024) will give all year connectivity to Tawang.

E. Zojila Pass Tunnel (complete 2024) will give all year connectivity between Srinagar and Leh. Read Why the Zojila tunnel shall revolutionize connectivity to Ladakh

Mumbai Coastal Road conceived in the 1970s, expected completion 2024.

E. NOIDA and Mumbai new International Airports.

F. Ganga Expressway 594kms, Uttar Pradesh

G Central Vista project, New Delhi

H Kachchi Dargah-Bidupur Bridge, Bihar is 9.75 kms. It will connect north and south Bihar.

New Parliament House.

Read Why is a New Parliament House being made

 

Not to forget introduction of Vande Bharat high-speed trains, expansion of Metro Rail from 5 to over 15 cities, over 3 lakh kms of rural roads constructed in the last nine years and huge coverage of people under Ayushman Bharat. MINT May 30, 2023.

 

27. Number of SME IPOs-Small and Medium Enterprises (Business Standard 27/12/23)

 Year

Amt raised Rs crs

Nos of IPOs

2012

102

14

2014

267

40

2017

1679

133

2021

746

59

2023

4643

181

181 companies raised Rs 4,642 crs in 2023 as against Rs 14 companies who raised Rs 102 crs in 2012. This fact was brought to public notice through an article by Sundar Sethuraman supported with data from Prime Database.

 

28. Introduction of FAST-TAG in 2020, surge in toll collections

“The overall toll collections through FASTag at fee plazas during 2022 was at Rs 50,855 crore, an increase of about 46 per cent, revealed data shared by the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways on Tuesday. In 2021, the cumulative collections were at Rs 34,778 crore.” Source ThePrint

 

According to the NPCI site that gives month wise collections, toll collected in March 2023 was Rs 5,067 crs, March 2022 Rs 4,095 crs, March 2021 Rs 3,086 crs and March 2020 Rs 1,421 crs.

 

On 29th April 2023, the daily toll collection through FASTag system achieved a historic milestone, reaching an all-time high collection of Rs. 193.15 crore, with 1.16 crore transactions recorded in a single day.” Source PIB  

Read All you wanted to know about Fasttag

 

29. Digitised Land Records

According to a article in MINT, “The digital land records of 13 major states and four Union territories (UTs) have been loaded onto the government’s platform for coordinating infrastructure building between central ministries, states and UTs under the PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan. With this, data from only six states—Himachal Pradesh, West Bengal, Uttarakhand, Sikkim, Nagaland and Meghalaya—and the UT of Lakshadweep remain to be digitally integrated. Once complete, Gati Shakti will save time and costs on project implementation, as it provides easy data access to stakeholders.”

 

Digitization will enable farmers easier access to credit when land is collateral. 

 

30. Skill development and promoting Entrepreneurship

In the same article Gulati wrote, “The PM Kaushal Vikas Yojana has played a significant role in this aspect by providing skill training to over 1.37 crore young individuals, enhancing their employment opportunities.” 

31. Digitization – Volume of UPI transactions

Courtesy Business Standard. 

“UPI numbers in 2023 hit a new high with cumulative volume at 117.6 billion valued Rs 83 trillion, up 59 and 43 per cent as compared to 2022.” Business Standard Jan 2, 2024  

 

According to the NPCI site that gives month wise UPI volumes, transaction value was in March 2023 was Rs 14,10,443 crs, March 2022 Rs 9,60,582 crs, March 2021 Rs 5,04,885 crs and March 2020 Rs 2,06,462 crs.

 

Vegetable vendors, bhel-puri vendors and in villages of Odisha seen use of UPI.

 

Read  COWIN and Digital Literacy in India 

 

32. One Nation One Ration Card scheme

Introduction of “Integrated Management of Public Distribution System (IM-PDS). Its main objectives are: Implementation of One Nation One Ration Card (nation-wide portability), creation of a national-level data repository for de-duplication of beneficiary/ration cards data; creation of integrated data infrastructure/systems across ration card management; allocation, supply chain of food grains and FPS automation among Centre and all states.”

 

Read Smart PDS scheme – a bold initiative in digitization

 

33. Formalization of Indian Economy

Between Demo, GST, Jan Dhan, and the unified payments interface (UPI), among other things, the Indian economy is being formalised as never before.” Source Swarajyamag

 

Benefits of Digitization - HDFC Mutual Fund handbook 2022

1. Formalization of economy.

2. Penetration of banking at bottom of the pyramid.

3. Small ticket loans would get commodotized and will be driven by data availability, analytics and machine learning.

 

Read 10 Modi Mantras that have set the stage for Amrit Kaal

Read India’s BRI for digital diplomacy

 

One can argue that both Aadhaar and Direct Benefits Transfer were conceptualized during UPA regime. However, they were not implemented whole-heartedly as done by this BJP government.

 

34. Drone Policy

The government announced Drone 21 Rules in January 2022. In budget 2023-24 Rs 31 crs was allocated for drone industry under PLI.

 

Read Indian Drone industry reaching the skies

 

The government is doing its bit but it seems the Drone sector needs more support if India has to become a global hub by 2030

 

35. Space Policy

I understand that the new Space Policy was issued in April 2023. However, it is not clear if it is notified. So also, not clear if the Foreign Direct Investment Policy announced.

 

Read Will new policy give a lift to India’s space business N India’s space policy 2023 sets stage for private sector participitation N India’s Rocket Dreams ready for a lift off

 

The Indian National Space Promotion Authorization Centre (In-Space) is an industry body that can make public space agencies and private players work together so that India realizes potential in this sector. The government’s approach is underscored by the fact that it has appointed Pawan Goenka, former Managing Director of Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd, as the Chairman of In-Space, the regulator for private players.

 

Read Conversation with Pawan Goenka, Chairman of In-Space Goenka says, “We are very serious about the private sector coming into Space and playing a lead role, along with ISRO.” Read Space Alliances could aid India’s strategic pursuits

 

36. India launches its own Global Positioning (GPS) system

Sources say that benefit of GNSS are, “Non-dependency and not being held hostage by foreign technology. India’s GNSS is more accurate than American GPS. Technical sovereignty is of critical importance from both civilian/economic development and military edge points.” 

 

When the U.S. got to know during Kargil (1999) that the Indian Navy ships were planning to block Karachi port they switched off GPS forcing our ships to return.

 

Read Why a regional navigation system matters for India And How Kargil spurred India to design its own GPS (April 2014 report)  

 

37. Marketing India’s digital success and willingness to share it globally  

India has offered to share learning’s with Pacific Island Countries and the world, the motto being ‘One World One Family’.

 

The good part is that India is promoting its digital infrastructure to the world.

 

38. PLI Scheme – Mobiles

Notwithstanding the recent criticism by former RBI governor Rajan, the PLI scheme for mobiles is appreciated. Read Anand Mahindra’s views Mobile exports may hit $ 10 billion in FY23. Niranjan R wrote in MINT that even China took years to move up the value chain so Indians must not find fault with the fact that they merely assemble phones now. 

 

39. Focus on Make in India Toys

This government gave this area high focus. 

 

Read The road to India’s ambitious make in India runs through China

 

So also, it is known that about 70% of India’s demand for API (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient) comes from China. In order to reduce the pharmaceutical industry’s dependence on China, its production was included in the PLI scheme. (Production Linked Incentive). 

 

Its success or failure will be known in due course but a serious attempt is made to reduce trade deficit with China.

40. Making Railway Wheels Locally

India imports all Railway Wheels from China. Recently, Titagarh Rail Systems and Ramakrishna Forgings set up a joint venture to set up Asia’s largest train wheel manufacturing plant. It will take three years to make in India. Source

 

41. Hits and Misses over 10 years- BS editorial Jan 31, 2024

1. Implemented Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code. 2. Merger of public sector banks and their recapitalization, helped address the twin balance-sheet problem. 3. GST.  Tax system after years shows signs of stabilization and increased revenue. 4. Real Estate (Regulation and Development Act), Decriminalising minor offences, liberalizing FDI in various sectors and adopting flexible inflation targeting.

Misses

1. Public debt at well over 80% of gross domestic product is always a source of macroeconomic vulnerability for a country like India. 2. Higher debt and interest payments are also affecting government spending. 3. The government needs to reduce fiscal deficit at a faster pace to bring down public debt.

42. Railway Electrification

Railways were one of the biggest consumers of diesel. This adds to India’s import bill. 

 

According to the Railways site, ‘The pace of electrification has gathered momentum in the last few years as since 2014, a record 37,011 RKM has been electrified against electrification of 3,874 RKM during 2007-14. Remarkably, out of the total 58,812 RKM electrified so far on pan India basis 50% has been electrified only during the last five years. Indian Railways electrified 58,812 Route Kilometers (RKMs) till March 31, 2023 which is about 90% of the total broad-gauge network (65,300 RKMs) of Indian Railways.”

 

Read How the Railways is adopting green mobility

43. Promoting Start-Ups

Ashok Gulati wrote, “It may also be noted that the Modi government has focused on fostering entrepreneurship and empowering youth to become job creators. The Startup India program has been instrumental in this regard, leading to a remarkable increase in the number of recognised start-ups-they have witnessed a 100-fold jump since 2016.”

According to a PIB release dated 7/12/22, “The number of recognized Startups increased from 452 in 2016 to 84,012 in 2022 (as on 30th November 2022).”

 

44. Privatization of Air-India

 

This is a major achievement because Air India was bleeding. In fact, to make the deal attractive for the Tatas the government had to take over app Rs 61,000 crs of Air India debt and liabilities. Economic Times

 

Where this government is at fault that it has not taken action against those responsible for bring AI to this pitiable state.

 

45. Merger of smaller PSU Banks with bigger ones

In 2020 Andhra and Corporation Banks were merged with Union Bank. Also, Allahabad bank was merged with Indian Bank. Dena and Vijaya Bank were merged with Bank of Baroda with effect from April 1, 2019. Oriental Bank of Commerce and United Bank of India were merged with Punjab National Bank (PNB) w.e.f. 1/4/2020. Syndicate Bank merged with Canara Bank.

 

Read Seven merged banks to see cheque book changes

 

46. Converting ordinance factories into companies.

“In a huge defence reform Wednesday, the Union Cabinet approved the corporatisation of the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB), a plan which was first mooted two decades ago to streamline the functioning of the 41 ordnance factories across the country.” Source ThePrint

 

47. Highest medal tally at Asian Games 2023 in over 60 years

India won over 100 medals. “India’s previous best performance at the continental showpiece event was in Jakarta five years ago, with 70 medals. Its previous highest overall finish was at the 1962 Asian Games, also in Jakarta, when India finished third. In every edition since then, the Indian team has ranked fifth or lower.” For more refer this Indian Express report

 

48. Rise in number of Airports

In her Budget 2024 speech Ms Sitharaman said that in the last 10 years the number of airports has doubled to 149. Source According to a PIB circular dated 23/4/23, “The number of operational airports in the country has doubled from 74 in 2014 to 148 in 2023.”

 

Read  Drive in air traffic due to regional connectivity and Udaan scheme

 

The UDAN scheme helped increase number of destinations connected by air.

 

49. Celebrating key Indic Events (Business Standard January 6, 2024)

Examples are January 23 Subhash Bose Jayanti Parakram Diwas, October 31 Sardar Patel birth anniversary as National Unity Day, August 14 is Partition Horror Remembrance Day, December 25 Atalji Birthday is Good Governance Day and December 26 is Veer Bal Diwas day on which 10th Guru Govind Singh’s sons were buried alive. What I like is title of each important day.  

 

50. Introduction of New Educational Policy (NEP)

According to this June 2023 Indian Express report the hits are, “The NEP 2020 is a policy document outlining a series of reforms to be pursued in education, the National Curriculum Framework (NCF), a crucial policy document for revising textbooks and classroom pedagogy, is nearly complete, Presently, the UGC is giving final touches to a regulation that would allow foreign universities to establish campuses in India that have their own admission process, the freedom to determine fee structures and recruit faculty and staff from here and abroad. In addition to the new centrally-run educational institutions (including 7 IITs, 7 IIMs, 16 IIITs, 15 AIIMS of which 12 are partially or fully functional) set up in the last nine years, there was a significant capacity enhancement of existing institutions by way of the EWS quota.” 

 

Increase in female participation – “For instance, the supernumerary seats were introduced for women at IITs and NITs in 2018, resulted in a rise in female representation from 9% in 2017 to 20% in 2022 at IITs over five years. Additionally, in 2021, all 33 Sainik Schools transitioned from being all-male to admitting girl cadets, following a successful pilot in 2018.” 

 

“In a bid to end “inspector raj” and dismantle lobbies, the country’s apex medical education body, the Medical Commission of India, was dissolved in September 2020 and replaced with a new body-National Medical Commission.”

 

According to Outlook, “There has been a 69-per cent increase in the number of medical colleges in the country, from 387 before 2014 to 654 as of now, the government informed Parliament on Tuesday. Further, there has been a 94-per cent rise in the number of MBBS seats, from 51,348 to 99,763.”

 

Read Nagaland gets its first medical college after 60 years of statehood

 

51. Guts to declare Lockdown

In March 2020 i.e. when Covid hit India none knew what was the solution to the virus, all we knew that it was spreading fast and could be fatal. In such a difficult situation lockdown seemed the only option. It caused great hardship to all of us, rich and poor alike, but we had a chance to survive the virus.

 

It requires high quality leadership to declare a nation-wide lockdown and convince people to stay at home for months.  

 

52. Supporting India made vaccine and vaccination of over 75 cr Indians

When the Covid crisis hit us, it is human to look for medical solutions. Western companies came up with vaccines. However, the government of India insisted on producing the vaccines locally, Serum Institute (contract manufacture) and the India developed one by Bharat Biotech.

 

Read Decoding Vaccine pricing and supply

 

The logistics of vaccinating over 75 crore Indians, twice and thrice, across states was no easy task. State governments rose up to the occasion.

 

The Cowin app and site had a proper record of citizen wise vaccines taken with date so there was no scope for fudging. If vaccine certificates were done manually, I am sure there would be a thriving black market for certificates.

 

Over 220 crore vaccinations were done.

 

53. How India shed colonial past at Republic Day parade through its gun salute

“At the 74th Republic Day celebrations, the British-era ’25 pounder artillery was replaced by 105 mm Indian field guns for the 21-gun salute. The move is in line with the Centre’s push for ‘Make in India’ and a step towards an ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’.” Firstpost.com

 

Read How India shed colonial past at Republic Day parade through its gun salute

 

54. No scam in auction of 3G spectrum or Commonwealth/2G type scams

However, in ten years has anyone responsible for these scams been convicted?

 

Read Scams during UPA And UPA Scams

 

55. Supporting Losers and Appreciating Winners of Tokyo Olympics

It was nice to see PM Modi congratulate and celebrate with winners and tell those who did not win medals that losing and winning is part of the game.

 

Has any Prime Minister motivated and spoken to players like that?

 

56. Varanasi Dibrugarh Luxury Cruise

The world’s longest river cruise from Varanasi to Dibrugarh via Bangladesh is an innovative idea. Read more It promotes all towns enroute including those in neighboring country Bangladesh.

 

57. Abide by me Christian hymn in Beating the Retreat Ceremony replaced by Kavi Pradeep’s Aye Mere Watan ke logo

 

To read more about Abide by me

 

58. Repatriation of antiquities to India

Prior to PM Modi virtual meeting with Australian leaders in 2022 Australia returned 29 antiquities to India. Source In 2021 the U.S. returned 248 antiquities to India. Source  During Modi’s June 2023 U.S. visit the government decided to return more than 100 antiquities to India. Source

 

Did you hear of return of antiquities during UPA or NDA1 regimes?

 

59. Vistadome coaches

 

For the first time in South Western Railway are introduced on the picturesque Yesvantpur-Mangaluru Junction route! Take a look at pictures of the coach

 

These coaches are introduced on other routes too and enhanced the travel experience significantly.

 

60. Selection of Performers during 2022 Republic Day bottom up

For the first time, dancers who perform during the cultural programme at the parade have been selected through a nation-wide competition ‘Vande Bharatam’, jointly organised by Ministries of Defence and Culture. The competition that began at the district level with the participation of nearly 3,870 dancers in 323 groups progressed to state and zonal levels over a period of two months in November and December. Finally, 480 dancers were selected.” Source Financial Express  

 

61. Focus on Electric Vehicles

The government has a relentless push for electric vehicles through demand incentives and tightening of emission regulations. This is good for the environment and led to fresh investments.

 

The Rooftop Solar Scheme is a good idea that is eco-friendly, will reduce demand for grid-sourced power and enhance incomes.

 

62. Release of Significant Minerals List (Business Standard)

“To enhance its strategic resource security, India has officially released its first-ever critical minerals list, identifying 30 key critical minerals crucial to the nation’s economic growth and technological development. The minerals featured on the list are antimony, beryllium, bismuth, cobalt, copper, gallium, germanium, graphite, hafnium, indium, lithium, molybdenum, niobium, nickel, PGE, phosphorous, potash, REE, rhenium, silicon, strontium, tantalum, tellurium, tin, titanium, tungsten, vanadium, zirconium, selenium, and cadmium as critical to Indian economy.” Source

 

It indicates the government’s strategic intent and long-term thinking.  

 

63. Introduction of Bharat New Car Assessment Program

“This alignment enables OEMs to conduct vehicle testing in India, reducing the costs of sending cars to NCAP-accredited centres abroad.” To read MINT report

 

64. Closing down Army Dairy

“The Indian Army on Wednesday formally closed the Military Farms Service which administered the 130 military farms all across the country.” Source Indian Express

 

Why on earth was the Army running a dairy in these times? 

 

65. Promoting use of Nano-fertilisers 2022-23 

The Centre is promoting the use of nano-fertilisers. This Daily-Pioneer article states that, “Soil nutrient in liquid form provides nitrogen to plants as an alternative to conventional urea. A 500 ml bottle of nano urea is equivalent to a 45 kg bag of conventional urea. The efficiency of nano urea is more than 80 per cent as compared to around 40 per cent of conventional urea. It increases yield by 3-16 per cent and additional income for farmers is estimated around Rs 2400/- to 5700/- per acre. Its use causes less soil, water and air pollution.”

 

66. Senior Journalist T N Ninan wrote on 2/1/2022 in Weekend Ruminations, Business Standard where he outlined positives after a difficult 2021. Excerpts -

 

The fourth positive, “One should mention the governments largely unsuspected capacity to deliver targeted welfare benefits at scale chiefly, but no solely through the harnessing of technology. Credit for this should go primarily to the prime minister but also to the civil servants and tech enterpreneurs who have led the excellent effort.” 

 

“Finally, we may in the next couple of years see the results of the long haul investment in the country’s infrastructure with the completion of the western high-speed railway freight corridor and better mobility with new expressway and highways.  The era of power shortages is over, the telecom revolution is here, internet and mobile banking and other fintech services have simplified life for millions, flying is more affordable and we should see a new generation of faster, more comfortable passenger trains. So the catchphrase ‘ease of living’ is beginning to acquire resonance.”

Kalbelia dancer, Jaisalmer Festival. 2013. 

67. Need to get rid of Ghulami mindset

According to this Indian Express report, “The Modi government has made several changes. The construction of the National War Memorial (NWM) and merger of flames of Amar Jawan Jyoti and NWM; renaming of some islands in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands; merger of the Railway Budget with the annual Union Budget; revival of literary works banned during British rule; renaming of roads (including Race Course Road to Lok Kalyan Marg); replacing the Finance Minister’s briefcase for the Budget to the “bahi khata”; emphasis on education in the mother tongue are all portrayed as efforts in this direction. The government also got a new Naval Ensign.”

 

Over 1,500 archaic laws were repealed.

 

68. Introduction of 3 new Criminal Laws 

“The Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita (BNS), which replaces the Indian Penal Code, 1860; the Bharatiya Sakshya (BS), which replaces the Indian Evidence Act, 1872; and the Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS), which replaces the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898 were notified in the Gazette of India on December 25, 2023.” How well they work only time will tell.

 

69. Nagaland’s first women members presided over the Rajya Sabha.

We may call it symbolism but this is an important landmark by Phangnon Konyak. Album Tribes of Nagaland at Hornbill Festival

 

70. Focus on Northeast

Bust of Modi in wood Sangai Festival 2014. 

Aditya Pittie, co-editor of Modi’s North East Story says, “The Northeast region of India has seen a remarkable transformation under PM Modi's leadership. The government has prioritized infrastructure development and cultural integration, recognizing their pivotal roles in fostering regional progress and unity. 

 

One significant initiative is the Vibrant Village Program (VVP), aimed at empowering border villages. The VVP targets various development aspects, including road connectivity, clean water access, electricity, renewable energy, and digital connectivity. 

 

Infrastructure development has been a cornerstone of the Modi government's agenda in the Northeast. The focus on road, airport, and digital connectivity has led to substantial progress. Road construction has doubled in pace, with the total length of national highways nearing 16,000 Km. Additionally, the number of airports has increased from nine to 16. The activation of 254 new 4G network towers in remote villages near the Line of Actual Control further underscores the government's dedication to bridging connectivity gaps.”

Modi at 2014 Hornbill Festival, Kohima. 

71. Launch of UPI-Pay between India and Singapore and UPI starts in Eifel Towers Paris, France.

Indian tourists can buy tickets for Eifel Tower via UPI N India’s UPI and Singapore’s PayNow now integrated

 

72. Successful continuation of Mann ki Baat

Started in October 2014 it has continued till 2024, no mean achievement. I particularly liked the conversation with students on exams. See video 32 min

 

73. India became the first country to land on the south pole of the moon with Chandrayaan-3

The contribution of Team ISRO was important. No less important was coverage of the launch. When ISRO was successful, India celebrated. Team ISRO was felicitated across the country including in residential societies of Bengaluru.

 

This coverage was planned, not incidental though success or failure of mission was in Ishwar’s hands. Read Who should get credit for Chandraayan 3 mission

 

74. Freeing labourers trapped in Silkyara Tunnel, Uttarakhand.

Many a time during the nearly month long ordeal, the people thought it was over but the government showed resolve in making every resource available. Eventually Ishwar ki kripa see precious lives were saved.

 

This demonstrated national resolve in case of adversity.

 

75. Swarved Mahamandir, world’s last meditation centre inaugurated at Varanasi in 2023.

This government has a penchant for thinking big and makes others think that day. 

 

Birth and Death Bill was good move. If implemented shall help. Read FAQ

 

I like the Finance Minister’s Under promise Over deliver Approach made popular by Narayan Murthy.

 

Yet there are many MISSES  in ten years, some of which are below.

 

1. Defining Secularism

 

When the Janata Party came to power in 1977 an attempt was made to define ‘secular republic’ to mean a ‘republic’ in which there is equal respect for all religions.’ This attempt failed since it was vetoed by the Congress. 

 

The BJP has failed to change laws unlike the Congress which focused on changing laws.

 

Read  Meaning of Secularism in India

 

2. Failed to give Hindus Equal Human Rights

 

Hindus are denied equal human rights e.g. right to manage their temples but Muslims and Christians can manage their places of worship and retain hundi collections (they do not become part of the State Treasury like in some states).

Read Laws that deny Hindus human rights

 

3. There are different tax laws for different religions.

Scheduled Tribes who have converted continue to be treated as ST for the purposes of government benefits and in the case of the northeast ST, even post conversion, do not pay income-tax.

Read Tax laws should be same for all Indian citizens

 

4. Poor communication whilst affecting change and good during elections

For e.g. farm laws. Government speaks in different voices or does not speak at all. Conversely, the RBI Governor managed the withdrawal of Rs 2,000/ notes well. So also, wish the shift to GST was better managed. Circulating an FAQ will help.

 

Read  How the BJP can affect change

 

5. Inaction on identifying and repatriation of illegal Bangladeshis and Rohingyas.

 

6. Silence on deaths of party workers/supporters post the West Bengal elections.

 

7. The Waqf Board is subject to a different law and receives grants from the government but Hindu religious affairs are controlled by the government.

Waqf property is dedicated to The Almighty in supposedly a Constitution driven state? Only Muslims are by law allowed to become CEO’s of the State Waqf Boards. Such Boards can fund religious education. Hindus!

Read FAQ on Waqf Board

8. Numerous raids by the Enforcement Directorate. Where are convictions including 2G scam and National Herald?

Rameshwaram Temple. Hindu Temples still under government control.  

9. CAA not notified

 

10. Have not launched a media campaign to make Indians realize the negative impact on the environment of Beef consumption.

 

Government could have provided disincentives to export of beef.

 

Read  Shifting Diets for a Sustainable Future

 

11. It could discourage Love Jihad by making it mandatory under law that all marriages between Indics (those covered under Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 presently) and Abrahamic religions be registered under the Special Marriage Act. Conversion is not a pre-requisite for marriage under this Act.

 

Read Meaning of Secularism  

 

12. The Government of India provides Scholarships to Minorities. Some details.

Academic Year 2021-22 Pre-Matric Rs 1,329 crores.(1129 cr), Post-Matric Rs    469 crores.( 501 cr) and Professional Courses Rs 353 crores (381 cr)

Figures in brackets are for year 2014-15. Total scholarship in year 2021-22 Rs 2,151 crores and 2014-15 Rs 2,011 crs. Hindus?

Here Minority includes Muslim, Buddhist, Jain, Sikh, Christian. Under the Income-tax Act and Hindu Marriage Act Buddhist, Jain and Sikhs considered Hindus.

 

Government says Sabka Saath Sabka Vishwas then why are Hindus excluded from the scholarships above. 

13. The Government failed to convince the Supreme Court to give up its colonial vacation policy.

Read Can the Vacation Policy of the Supreme Court shed its colonial legacy

14. Equal Inheritance Rights for all Indian Women

Currently, the inheritance rights are not equal esp. for Muslim women.

Read Comparing inheritance rights for Hindu and Muslim women

The law should provide that in case of Intestate Succession i.e. without leaving a Will, all property, movable and immovable, shall be inherited equally between female and male heirs.

15. Failure to hold the Supreme Court Accountable for not making public report of the expert committee, appointed by SC and who submitted their report in March 2021, after SC stayed implementation of Farm Laws in January 2021.

Read Decoding Scrapping of Farm Laws  

16. Inadequate Privatization

While announcing the Union Budget for fiscal fear 2021-22, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said, “Other than IDBI Bank, we propose to take up the privatisation of two public sector banks and one general insurance company in the year 2021-22.”Source  

IDBI Bank privatization is on hold. Ditto Bharat Earth Movers Ltd. Read More on delays The listing of public sector general insurers has not happened

17. Closing of Free Trade Agreements 

Negotiate hard for India but eventually close.

18. Labour Reforms

The Centre did circulate Labour Codes around 2019, 2020 (consolidated 29 labour laws) but implementation is weak. Hope situation changes post elections.

19.  The government failed to make a strong case publicly for shifting agriculture from the State to Concurrent List.

In 1950 (when Constitution adopted), there was no fertilizer and farm insurance subsidy, no PM Kisan, minimum support price and buffer food stocks. It was assumed then that States would incur all agriculture related expenditure (hence given right to tax agri income) but things have changed.

The Centre could, in consultation with States, set up the equivalent of a GST Council to agree on a framework for bringing agriculture under the Concurrent List.

Read  Why India needs a Masterclass in responsibility & accountability of each arm of the Government

BJP must remember the more successful you are the humble you should be.

In case of any errors, do write back. No offence meant to any individual, organization or political party. This article must not be republished without written approval of esamskriti.com Credits for images given. In case of errors, write back, they are without malafide intent. 

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4. Tourism Policy

5. Medical Tourism Policy

6. Having more Women Judges in Higher Judiciary

7. Review policy to Foreign Aid

8. How India can build National Power

9. Regulatory ideas for NRI’s owning agricultural land

10. Promoting Tourism to SEAsia should be instrument of foreign policy

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