One Year of Modi Administration

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"Sab ka Saath Sab ka Vikas" sounds hollow, if things do not improve all around. There is nothing significant being done in the one-year tenure of the Modi government. Everyone’s asking the question on the much-hyped "Achche Din" promise: "Where are the achche din?"

The man, who supposedly transformed Gujarat, is now under scrutiny. There are waves of discomfort on social and cyber media. Common man has also started murmuring now and signs of discontent are emerging.

There are certain core areas which are yet to be addressed like black money, farmers' plight, small industry and promise of employment, foreign policy (we are only providing market), no change in the Maxwell's education system; same law laid down by the British and lack of new laws; and inflation, among others.

A general perception is taking shape: "What Modi government is doing is paying back to investors who invested in his campaign".

I am not sure the government is doing enough to improve the lackadaisical performance of the economy. Privatizing ONGC, GAIL, IOCL, Air India, BHEL, Banks, etc (government has no business to be in these industries) should be a priority. Though I must add that there are a couple of positives (Spectrum and Coal block allocations) in the past few months with regards to bringing in lot more revenue to the government. Trying to salvage or remodel existing dysfunctional schemes of the UPA government though is a good idea; sufficient progress is not being made on that front.

"Make in India" defense tenders to the tune of $15 billion haven't found any takers. There is no clear plan laid out to stop leakages through MGNREGA, except a speech in the parliament on how bad the scheme is at the moment. Due to the benign neglect of MGNREGA, people in rural areas are moving to urban areas seeking employment. There is also no clear direction on how to use the surplus grains that are rotting in FCI. With a large section of the society malnourished or struggling to get two square meals a day, the government should have taken it as a priority on how to use those grains. In fact, 'Sab ka Saath, Sab ka Vikas' sounds hollow if things do not improve all around.

The perception of India as a tolerant society has taken a beating abroad. Managing perceptions is most important. Though Prime Minister has made references a couple of times, it hasn't been effective. He should tweet or post on FB page that action has been taken against the perpetrators of the attacks on other religious places of worship, rather posting some mundane stuff on Indian cricket. For a man putting 18 to 20 hours a day, he needs to get a lot more done. People are impatient and if results are not delivered urgently, losses in Bihar and UP could draw curtains on another term of this government as non-BJP parties are waiting by the ditches to capture power by all means.

Now let's discuss the much talked about hike in petroleum prices. People are asking: "What is the logic behind the recent hikes?"

In UPA government (2013) Brent crude price was $115; petrol in Patna was Rs. 80.13 per liter. In Modi regime, 2015- Brent crude is $65; petrol in Patna is selling for R.s 73.53 liter. The Modi government has failed to give logical answers. Just think if crude boils back to $115; what will be the petrol price? Maybe Rs. 150.00 per liter.

NDA government, BJP, and its supporters have no sound logic to validate two price-hikes in a short span of fifteen days. A simple back of the envelope calculation shows that the cost of one liter of petrol cannot be more than Rs. 33 per liter when the crude is at $65. Why is petrol retailing at Rs. 74 .00 per liter which is the same price when crude was selling for $140 per barrel and the USD was Rs. 58.00?

The gap is the result of chicanery by the finance minister and the loot by the PSU monopolies.

The Swachch Bharat Mission actually turned out to be a photo-shoot campaign for the nominated stars! There should have been a well-conceived plan to implement this mission. Modi administration formed a new ministry just to ensure that the sacred Ganges River becomes pure again, but unfortunately, no significant work has been done till now that will ensure us that they are really into cleaning Ganga! Even the Supreme Court has raised the question about the government's intentions of cleaning Ganga in a limited period of time. The honourable court even raps the govt. saying "Your plan will take 200 years to clean Ganga".

I am still not able to find out what wrong was there in the Planning Commission. Modi government changed some of the policies of it and named it Niti-Ayog. I don’t find any logical reason in doing so.

I have written many articles in support of Mr. Modi when he was trying to oust the corrupt and derailed Congress led UPA government but now I feel he is another facet of the same coin. Modi Ji is just another politician and it is our mistake to have fallen for his marketing and concluding that he is different.


Alok Kumar, Sr. Journalist, Patna.

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