The result to 17th Lok Sabha Election was announced on 23rd May 2019 and country voted in favour of BJP led by our people’s leader, Narendra Modi, electing him for a second term with humongous majority. The coalition secured 353 seats of which 303 were won by BJP alone. This is an extraordinary achievement for any party in the political history of India. This mandate by the public to Modi Government-2.0 was a result of the commitment shown by Modi government in it’s first term, which was evident in every decision that the government took. One would remember the destruction caused by cyclone Fani last year in May. Right before election results, when normally political parties are busy drawing up plans and analysing and dissecting the exit polls, Prime Minister Modi focused on providing relief to the citizens struck by the calamity.
Similarly, a few days back when cyclone Amphan wrecked havoc in Odisha and West Bengal, PM Modi, while assessing the situation in these states, released a relief package of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 crores respectively. This very empathetic aspect of PM Modi binds him in one thread with every cast, sect, region and individual of the country.
The countless decisions taken by Modi Government in past six years with the aim of providing benefit to the last man standing in the queue as propounded in ‘antyodaya’ has bore fruit in every sphere of public life. Be it inculcating the spirit of duty towards nation with Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, propagating yoga as lifestyle in different parts of the world or providing housing, fuel, Jan Dhan Bank accounts and basic medical treatment to the last man in most remote areas, PM Modi developed a roadmap, which has been successful in achieving all aspects of welfare politics.
No country in the world has a system to judge a government based on a year’s working, but Modi government, while working with credibility, has presented it’s day to day statement of account to the public for scrutiny. To honour the confidence that people have shown in our government in the second term, the government has taken decisions that have earned accolades and reputation across the world. Keeping personal benefits aside the Modi government- 2.0 scrapped Article 370 and 35-A, fulfilling the aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. At the same time, the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) is an effort to curb the influx of people from Bangladesh and to provide citizenship to the thousands of Hindu, Sikh and Parsee minorities living in adverse conditions in terror encouraging Pakistan.
The government also struck down the demonic and regressive Triple Talaq Act to put an end to the discrimination against the Muslim women, which had plagued them for decades. On the economic front, the government had accelerated the economic reforms started in the first term. With a motto of providing ‘clean fuel, better life’, Ujjwala Scheme that was started on May 1st 2016 from Ballia in UP, is currently benefiting more than 8 crore 50 lakh people. The linking of smaller areas and towns with City Gas Distribution (CGD) Network, and 10th round of tendering in CGD is surely a massive achievement. A network of more than 10,000 CNG stations was developed to improve the cooking fuel and transportation facilities. In comparison to other big economies, gas share in Indian economy is quite less and we have taken steps to improve the situation in this sector. By the end of 10th round of bidding, 70% population of the country will be linked to City Gas network. To augment the supply and distribution of natural gas, an investment of Rs 4.2 lakh crore is being done.
By 2030, this will double up the share of Natural Gas in India’s energy needs. While it will make fuel more affordable to consumers, we will also be able to meet our international environmental commitments towards cleaner energy. Importantly this path breaking development effort is again led by eastern part of India, which was once considered as the proud epitome of energy, mining and human resource for the country but due to disinterest of some previous governments, were wrongly labeled as backward and ‘Bimaru’ landscape.
Modi Government-2.0 led ‘Mission Proorvodaya’, which is Rs 102 lakh crore worth National Infrastructure Pipeline Scheme is progressing at a brisk pace. It will provide the infrastructure framework to cater to the needs of 21st century. By 2030, country will have 300 new Steel Manufacturing Units. This will help achieve the target of increasing per capita steel use from 70kg to 160 kg. This will immensely help small and medium scale steel units and will generate huge employment for thousands of people.
The commitments and empathy displayed by Modi Government during last 6 years, is also being witnessed by the world in the current Covid-19 Crisis. Proactively acting on the experience of few other Covid-19 impacted countries, government announced lockdown at an appropriate time, which helped to save millions of lives and also earn exemplary reputation internationally, as a role model to the world. The patience with which our countrymen responded to the call for lockdown by PM Modi, itself shows the trust they have in the leadership capability of PM Narendra Modi.
To fight this Pandemic, besides providing other monetary benefits, Modi government 2.0 has released one of the biggest stimulus packages in the world worth Rs. 20 lakh crore that will provide relief to labourers, farmers, middle class and industries that form the financial backbone of the country. In addition to this it is quite appropriate to highlight here that the Ujjwala Scheme that benefits those living below poverty line, have be provided with three free gas cylinders and Direct benefit transfer under ‘Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Yojana”.
Ujjwala Yojana has not only helped accelerate the process of providing government help to the poor and needy, but also became the mainstay to provide the government assistance to poorest of poor with complete transparency. Before commencement of Lockdown 4.0, 6 crore 92 lakh people have received Ujjwala Gas cylinders and subsidy amounting to Rs 8432 Crores has been transferred to their bank account via Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT), resulting in the biggest relief package of the world.
As the Ujjwala Yojana is expanding its horizon in the society, India is gaining center stage of world’s energy demands. Thereby India is coming up as largest supplier and consumer of energy.
As the world fights the Coronavirus crisis, the path towards “Atmanirbhar Bharat” shown by PM Modi, will certainly bring new opportunities and employment to not just in our cities but also in the villages. Credit for this goes to PM Narendra Modi led government, whose people centric policies are based on politics of welfare with the motto “Vasudeva Kutumbakam”. There was a time when lots of debates happen on the lethargy of governments but now people no longer suffer from government inaction and Modi Government 2.0 has completely changed the perception that decisions in a democracy are always taken opportunistically and based on political benefits. This is the new welfare politics, which has instilled confidence among people for the current political leadership.
(The writer is Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Minister of Steel)