Four year of Modi Government by Kritika Oberoi

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Four year of Modi Government

ABOUT NARENDER MODI:- Narendra Damodardas Modi , was born on 17 September 1950 is an Indian politician serving as the 14th and, since 2014, the current Prime Minister of India. He was the Chief Minister of Gujarat from 2001 to 2014, and is the Member of Parliament for Varanasi. Modi, a member of the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP), is a Hindu nationalist and member of the right-wing Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). He was born to a Gujarati family in Vadnagar. He was introduced to the RSS at the age of eight, beginning a long association with the organization. He left home graduating from school. Modi travelled around India for two years and visited a number of religious centers. He returned to Gujarat and moved to Ahmedabad in 1969 or 1970. In 1971 he became a full-time worker for the RSS. During the state of emergency imposed across the country in 1975, Modi was forced to go into hiding. The RSS assigned him to the BJP in 1985, and he several positions within the party hierarchy until 2001, rising to the rank of general secretary. 2014 INDIAN GENERAL ELECTIONS:- In September 2013 Modi was named the BJP’s candidate for prime minister in the 2014 Lok Sabha election. Several BJP leaders expressed opposition to Modi’s candidature, including BJP founding member L.K. Advani, who cited concern with leaders who were “concerned with their personal agendas”. Modi played a dominant role in the BJP’s election campaign. Several people who voted for the BJP’s stated that if Modi had not been the prime-ministerial candidate, they would have voted for another party. The focus on Modi as an individual was unusual for a BJP election campaign. The election was described as a referendum on Narendra Modi. During the campaign, Modi focused on the corruption scandals under the previous INC government, and played on his image as a politician who has created high rate of GDP growth in Gujarat. Modi projected himself as a person who could bring about “development”, without focus on any specific policies. His message found support among young Indians and among middle-class citizens. The BJP under Modi was able to downplay concerns about the protection of religious minorities and Modi’s commitment to secularism, areas in which he had previously received criticism. The BJP’s campaign was assisted by its wide influence in the media. In addition to more conventional campaign methods, Modi made extensive use of social media, and addressed more than 1000 rallies via hologram appearances. Modi led the BJP in the 2014 general election, which gave the party a majority in the Lok Sabha, the first time a single party had achieved this since 1984. He has began with the high profile sanitation campaign, and abolished environmental and labor laws. The BJP won 31% of the vote, and more than doubled its tally in Lok Sabha to 282, becoming the first party to win a majority of seats its own since 1984. In the states such as Uttar Pradesh in which the BJP performed well, it drew exceptionally high support from the upper-class Hindus, although the 10% Muslim votes won was more than it won before. It performed particularly well in parts of the country that had recently experienced violence between Hindus and Muslims. Modi’s tweet announcing the victory was described as being emblematic of the political realignment away from a secular, socialist state towards capitalism and Hindu culture nationalism. PRIME MINISTER:- Modi was sworn in as the Prime Minister of India on 26th may 2014 at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. He became the first Prime Minister born after India’s independence from the British Empire. His first cabinet consisted of 45 ministers, 25 fewer than the previous United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government. 21 new ministers were added to the council of ministers in 2014. During his premiership, India rose to the 100th rank in the 2018 Ease of doing business ranking by World Bank. ECONOMIC POLICY:- The economic policies of Modi’s government focused on privatization and liberalization of the economy, based on a neoliberal framework. Modi liberalized India’s foreign direct investment policies, allowing more foreign investment in several industries including defense and railways. Other reforms included removing many of the country’s labor regulations to make it harder for workers to form unions and easier for employers to hire and fire them. There reforms met with support from institutions such as the World Bank, but oppositions from scholars within the country. Money spending on health and family welfare declined by 15% and on primary and secondary education by 16%. The budgetary allocation for the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, or the “education for all” program, declined by 22%. The government also lowered corporate taxes, abolished the wealth tax, and reduced customs duties on gold, jewelry, and increased sales taxes. In October 2014, the Modi government deregulated diesel prices, and later increased taxes on diesel and petrol. In September 2014, Modi introduced the Make in India initiative to encourage foreign companies to manufacture products in India, with the goal of turning the country into a global manufacturing hub. Under the previous bill government want the consent of 80% of the owners of a piece of property before acquiring it for a private this requirement was waived. The bill was passed via an executive order after it faced opposition in parliament, but was eventually allowed to lapse. Modi’s government put in place the Goods and Services Tax, the biggest tax reform in the country since independence. It subsumed around 17 different taxes and became effective from 1 July 2017. On 25 June 2015, Modi launched a program intended to develop 100 smart cities. The “Smart Cities” program is expected to bring Information Technology companies an extra benefit of 20 billion. In June 2015, Modi launched the “Housing for All By 2022” project, which intends to eliminate slums in India by building about 20 million affordable homes for India’s urban poor. In the first cabinet decision, Modi set up a team to investigate black money. On 9 November 2016, the government demonetized 500 and 1000 banknotes, with the stated intention of curbing corruption, black money, the use of counterfeit currency, and terrorism the move led to widespread protests throughout the country, including one by opposition parties, which stalled the winter session of the parliament. In these days following the demonetization, banks across the country faced severe cash shortages, which had detrimental effects on a number of small businesses, on agriculture, and on transportation. There has been a steep increase in digital payments and transactions in the country since the day demonetization was announced. HEALTH AND SANITATION POLICY:- In his first year as Prime Minister, Modi reduced the amount of money spent by the central government on healthcare. The Modi government launched New Health Policy (NHP) in January 2015. The policy did not increase the government’s spending on healthcare, instead emphasizing the role of private healthcare organization. The healthcare budget for the following year rose by 19%. The budget was viewed positively by private insurance providers. Public health experts criticized its emphasis on the role of private healthcare providers, and suggested that it represented a shift away from public health facilities. Modi has generally emphasized his government’s efforts at sanitation as a mean of ensuring good health. On 2 October 2014, Modi launched the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (CLEAN INDIA) campaign. The stated goals of campaign included eliminating open defection and manual scavenging. The plan was to achieve these aims in five years. As part of the program, the Indian government began constructing millions of toilets in rural areas and encouraging people to use them. The government also announced plans to build new sewage treatment plants. The administration plans to construct 60 million toilets by 2019. The construction projects have faced allegations of corruption, and have faced severe difficulty in getting people to use the toilets constructed for them. EDUCATION POLICY:- The government began formulating a New Education Policy soon after election. As of March 2016, this policy had yet to be implemented. This was the third education policy introduced by the Indian government, following those of 1968 and 1986. The policy emphasis the education of minority students, as well as those of economically backward groups, in particular on improving enrolment in schools among those groups. The policy proposed bringing religious education institutions under the Right to Education Act. There was also a debate about removing caste-based reservation in favor of reservation based on income, a move supported by the RSS , but which was criticized as being discriminatory on the basis of caste. FOREIGN POLICY:- Foreign policy played a relatively small role in Modi’s election campaign, and did not feature prominently in BJP’s election manifesto. Modi invited all other leaders of SAARC countries to his swearing in ceremony as prime minister. He was the first Indian PM to do so. The government also tried to improve relations with Islamic nations in the Middle East, such as Bahrain, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, as well as with Israel. Modi added five bilateral strategic partnerships to the 25 that had been agreed by his predecessors Singh and Vajpayee. DEFENSE POLICY:- The BJP election manifesto had also promised to deal with illegal immigration into India in the Northeast, as well as to be more firm in its handling of insurgent groups. During the election campaign, Modi said that he will accommodate Hindu migrants who were being persecuted in Bangladesh, but those that came with “political objectives” would have to be sent back. The Modi government issued a notification allowing Hindu, Sikh, and Buddhist illegal immigrants from Pakistan and Bangladesh to legalize their residency in India. The government described the measure as being taken for humanitarian reasons but it drew criticism from several Assamese organizations. Modi has repeatedly stated that Pakistan was an exporter of terrorism. On 29 September 2016, the Indian Army stated that it had conducted a surgical strike on terror launch pads in Azad Kashmir, although Pakistan denied the claim, and the details of the confrontation are still in dispute. ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY:- In naming his cabinet, Modi renamed the “Ministry of Environment and Forests” the “Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change”. The new ministry also removed the number of laws related to environmental protection. The government also tried to reconstitute the wildlife board such that it no longer had representatives from non-governmental organisations. Modi also relaxed or abolished a number of other environmental regulations, particularly those related to industrial activity. DIGITAL INDIA:- Digital India is a campaign launched by government of India to ensure the government’s services are made available to citizens electronically by improved online infrastructure and by increasing internet connectivity or by making the country digitally empowered in the field of technology. Digital India was launched by the Prime Minister of the India Narender Modi on 1 July 2015 with an objective of connecting rural areas with high-speed internet networks and improving digital literacy. The vision of Digital India program is inclusive growth in areas of electronic services, products manufacturing and job opportunities etc. and it is centered on three keys areas- Digital Infrastructure as a Utility to Every Citizen, Governance & Services on Demand and Digital Empowerment and Citizens. The initiatives include plans to connect rural areas with high-speed internet networks. Digital India consists of three core components:- A. Development of secure and stable digital infrastructure. B. Delivering government services digitally. C. Universal digital literacy. The Government of India entity Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL) which executes the Bharatnet project is the custodian of Digital India (DI) project. Bharatnet will connect all the 625,000 villages of India by December 2018. IMPLEMENTATION:- NEW DIGITAL SERVICES Some of the facilities which will be provided through this initiative are Bharat net, Digital Locker, e-education, e-health, e-sign, e-shopping and national scholarship portal. As the part of Digital India, Indian Government planned to launch Botnet cleaning centers. • National E-Governance Plan aimed at bringing all the front-end government services online. • is a platform to share inputs and ideas on matters of policy and governance It is a platform for citizen engagement in governance, through a "Discuss", "Do" and "Disseminate" approach. • E-Sign Framework allows citizens to digitally sign a document online using Aadhaar authentication. • E-Hospital application provides important services such as online registration, payment of fees and appointment, online diagnostic reports, enquiring availability of blood online etc. • Digital attendance: The “attendance” is a website, launched by PM NARENDER MODI on 1 July 2015 to keep a record of the attendance of Government employees on a real-time basis. This initiative started with implementation of a common Biometric Attendance System (BAS) in the central government offices located in DELHI. • Back-end Digitization • Black Money Eradication: The 2016 Union budget of India announced 11 technology initiatives including the use of data analytics to nab tax evaders, creating a substantial opportunity for IT companies to build out the systems that will be required. Digital Literacy mission will cover six crore rural households. It is planned to connect 550 farmer markets in the country through the use of technology. Facilities to Digitally Empower Citizen • Digital Lockers:- This facility will help citizens to digitally store their important documents like PAN card, passport, mark sheets and degree certificates. Digital Locker will provide secure access to Government issued documents. It uses authenticity services provided by AADHAAR. It is aimed at eliminating the use of physical documents and enables the sharing of verified electronic documents across government agencies. Three key stakeholders of Digilocker are Citizen, Issuer and requester. GOODS AND SERVICES TAX (GST):- The GST introduced from July 2017 has been one of the most significant reform of Modi government. The implementing of GST has created a single common market in India by subsuming several different taxes into a single tax and applicable pan-India. With the introduction of GST, states can expect their revenues to increase, especially those that do not manufacture goods and rely on supply from other states. At present GST is a four-tier tax slab system and there are plans at reducing the number of slabs as the system stabilizes. GST will play a major role in achieving the goals. AADHAAR:- The UIDAI project is a 12-digit unique identification number given to Indian residents, based on their biometric and demographic data. It is the world’s largest ID system implemented. The Modi government has significantly advanced its implementation. The Aadhaar Card allows the holder to use it as a proof of address though it does serve as proof of citizenship. As on November 2017, 1.19 billion Aadhaar cards have been issued, covering 99% of the population. SWACHH BHARAT ABHIYAN:- The “Clean India Campaign” was started on 2 October 2014. The program is a movement against open defecation and helps people build toilets in joints participation with the government. As of April 2018 46, 36,128 individual toilets and 306,064 community and public toilets, have been constructed across the country. It is a national level campaign run by the Indian Government to cover all the backward statutory towns to make them clean. This campaign was officially launched by the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi on 145th birth anniversary of the Mahatma Gandhi on 2 October 2014 at Rajghat, New Delhi. GOVERNANCE AND OTHER INITIATIVES:- Modi’s first year as PM saw significant centralization of power relative to previous administration. On 31 December 2014, Modi announced that the planning commission had been scrapped. It was replaced with a body called the National Institute for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog. The planning commission was a legacy of the Indian Independence movement, although critics said that it was slowing economic growth. The Modi government launched a crackdown against a number of civil society organizations. He started a “MAN KI BAAT” on 3 October 2014. Modi also launched the Digital India program, which has the goal of ensuring that government services are available electronically, building infrastructure to provide high-speed internet access to rural areas, boosting manufacturing of electronic goods in the country. AWARDS AND RATINGS:- Modi was awarded Indian of the year by CNN-IBN news network in 2014. In 2014, 2015 and 2017, he was named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World. Modi was also declared winner of the Time magazine reader’s poll for the person of the year in and 2016. He was the second-most-followed politician on Twitter and Facebook. He was also awarded as the greatest leader in 2015. In 2016 a wax statue of Modi was unveiled at MADAME TUSSAUD WAX MUSEUM, LONDON. As a PM, Modi has received consistently high approval ratings; at the end of his first year in office, he received overall approval ratings of 87% in Pew Research Poll, with 68% of people rating them him “very favorably” and 93% approving of his government. In 2017 survey of PEW RESEARCH showed Modi to be the most popular figure in Indian politics.