Modi seeks support to build Dream India

Modi seeks support to build Dream India

Modi seeks support to build Dream India

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday marked his first year in office by writing a letter to 120 crore, Indians where he listed his government’s initiatives towards the country’s development, and sought support for building a Dream India.

He began by saying in his second public letter since Monday: “Economic growth has been revived. Inflation is substantially down. Confidence is up. Foreign investments have increased. Bold reforms pending for decades have been implemented. Diesel prices have been decontrolled. The Goods and Services Tax (GST) is slated to be introduced next year.

“Cooking gas subsidies are being paid directly to beneficiary bank accounts under PAHAL—ensuring the right amount of subsidy reaches the right people at the right time. FDI limits in insurance, railways and defence production have been raised. Transparent coal auctions and allotments have mobilised potential revenues of Rs 3.35 lakh crore to coal-bearing states over the lifespan of mines,” he said.

India’s economic growth rebounded sharply this year, and inflation slipped into the negative, prompting the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to predict recently that India will be the fastest-growing major economy in the world by 2016.

Modi, however, said: “There is much more to be done and I know your expectations are high. A year ago I gave you my word that while I might perhaps commit errors, I would always act with pure intentions and spend every available moment working for a better India.”

Last year, Modi had spearheaded the BJP’s election campaign with a promise to put a leash on runaway prices and bring “achchhe din”, among other things.

One year down the line, the response to his government's policies and reforms have been mixed. While investors and the business community have given a thumbs-up to the government, private investment on the ground is yet to take off, as per the government’s own admission.

The Opposition Congress has accused the government of being pro-corporate and anti-poor.
Perhaps seeking to counter this claim, Modi said, “Economic growth has meaning only if it empowers the poor, farmers, women, as well as the middle and neo-middle classes of all communities. To enable us to continue paying remunerative prices to our farmers, we secured a permanent ‘peace clause’ at the WTO.

“The world’s largest financial inclusion project has brought banking to the doorsteps of the poor, opening a record 15-crore-plus bank accounts with deposits of over Rs 15,800 crore. An affordable social security system, including pension, life insurance and accident insurance, has already witnessed 6.75 crore enrolments in its first week. MUDRA has been set up with a corpus of Rs 20,000 crore to help small businessmen, who, despite being our biggest job-creators, have historically been starved of credit.”  
He concluded: “A lot has been achieved. However, this is just the beginning.”