Next P.M. of India Narendra Modi is a puzzle for many,specially for people of other countries and they have been making an effort to crack this puzzle. To simplify the matter many of them have been comparing him with their own politicians. American political commentator David B Cohen compares him with Ronald Reagan due to their rising on the state horizon first, advocating free market,giving less importance to welfare programs. Scholar Rob Jenkins compares him with Richard Nixon due to being secretive about their personal lives,dependence upon trusted aids,tendency for denial and giving no importance to intellectuals.Some political observers compare him with Margaret Thatcher due to humble backgrounds,band of economic advisers,pushing market driven economy,slashing welfare programs,authoritarian ways,non tolerance of dissent and contempt for opposition.On the basis of his campaign running tactics, he is being compared with Barack Obama.His strongman like chest thumping has compelled some to take notice of him as next Vladimir Putin on the global stage.
In an article in TOI, Indira Bagchi has made efforts to find similarities in him and some other Asian Nationalist leaders. She compares him to Shinzo Abe ,the Japanese P.M. as both of them have the enormous task of overcoming security challenges before their respective countries and turning around the economy. Chinese compare him with Xi Zinping for their capacities to get the economy going,targeting corruption and having trade friendly policies. Due to the taint of 2002 Gujarat riots he has been compared to Ariel Sharon and Mahinda Rajpaksa also. Some are comparing him to Recep Tayyip Erdogen the Turkish strongman also.Writer Ramchandra Guha compares him to Indira Gandhi as both have made efforts to make the party,the Government and country an extension of their personalities.
Just as an elephant had different connotations for different persons of a group of blind people, various scholars have been trying to understand the Modi phenomenon in their own way. No doubt Modi is not a pushover,a great survivor, a strong person who believes in himself. He has fought all the odds since he became Chief Minister of Gujarat and came thumbs up.Once he started to emerge as a possible P.M. candidate of his party, many in his own party including his mentor made efforts to bloc his path. Politicians of other parties heaped all the calumnies upon him but he remained undeterred. With the help of a group of persons and support of general workers of the party he continued with the single minded pursuit of achieving the top job of the country. He blazed a trail through his tireless campaign and proved to be a master dream seller whose promises have been lapped up by the youth ,the middle and lower middle classes and even by the poverty ridden people. Today they all have become ambitious,not ready to accept the status quo and want to change their fate for a better future. They are no further ready to tolerate corruption and deteriorating law and order position. Fed up with the policy paralysis of the Manmohan regime, the corporate sector also rooted for him. The Man called Narendra Modi exploited all their aspirations and hopes,charmed them with his ready wit and humour and did the unbelievable as he brought his party to power with a clear mandate. A political party has achieved this feat after thirty long years.
Modi puzzle is solved if we go through his interviews and speeches.He has a vision and has a clear road map to achieve this.He has taken an enormous and tough task of nation building on his shoulders.Being a hard taskmaster,quick decision maker,methodical with total involvement, and above all his himself being a committed hardworking and above reproach person, we can hope that he would prove to be beneficial for our country. The renowned economist Jagadish Bhagwati says he has a vision where he will take us.His model of development is about using the wealth that is created to increase social spending and avoiding self indulgence.He believes that his path towards economic prosperity will have salutary effect on the poverty also.Salient features of Modi's administration, as indicated by him on different occasions, would be as given below-
- He promises inclusive development meant for everyone.
- Promises to reform the institutions and strengthen them so that they can function effectively and professionally.
- To run the administration as per rule of law.
- Zero tolerance approach towards naxalism/maoism.A clear legal framework to sort out impediments in this . Modernizing police and paramilitary forces.( Here I think Modi should include making efforts to address root cause of such violence also).
- No confrontational approach towards any country including the neighbours.Having a sense of trust and mutual cooperation with neighbours.Instead of mere talks he is in favour of concrete action and bridging the trust deficit. Pakistan should take effective and demonstrable action towards terror networks to enable this. Modi talks of common history,culture and tradition between these two countries and their biggest common problem poverty. He is in favour of not being constrained by the past.
- He is in favour of good relations with China and take these to higher level after solving the problems between the two.
- Although U.S. has denied visa to Modi for years, he is in favour of treating U.S. as a natural ally and taking the relationship to a new level.
- Believes in the right to form opinion and express it.
- Regarding perception of law, favours going by what is decided as final by the Judicial system.
- Regarding defence procurement, he favours efficient procurement system in transparent manner.Favours indigenization of military equipments.He favours involving Indian Corporates in Public Private Partnership for defence manufacturing. He is also in favour of giving incentives for the purpose of defence production.
- Promises to put economy back on the track,revive growth and investor sentiments with focus on infrastructure and manufacturing sector.He says there has to be adequate focus on the micro,small and medium enterprises. Desires to pay maximum attention towards generating employment for youth. Modi is in favour of expediting decision making process for clearing projects by removing procedural bottlenecks. To control inflation he will addresss supply side concern.
- Modi wants to make agriculture remunerative and promises to invest heavily on irrigation and agro infrastructure to revive the farm sector . He wants to create value addition for the products. He talks of taking agricultural research from lab to land and ushering in second green revolution.
- Regarding housing, he says that by the time our country completes 75 years of independence every family should have a house of its own with access to toilets,water and electricity. To achieve the purpose he is in favour of a mix of public and private investment with easy access to credit.He will focus on the economically weaker section.
- NRGEA will continue but it will be reviewed and stress will be put upon creating durable community assets,rural housing and sanitation as well as providing skills.
- Favours addressing environmental issues in such a way that sanctions for the projects are not delayed.
- Modi believes that only holy book of the Government is the Indian Constitution.