Narendra Modi, The Prime Minister of India: An Indian Politician Par Excellence
Narendra Modi had a humble beginning:
The early life of Narendra Modi:
The Prime minister of India, Narendra Modi was born on 17th September 1950 to a family of grocers in Gujarat, India. He was the third of six children born to his parents Damodardas Mulchand Modi and Hiraben Modi. He had a humble beginning. Having not born with a silver spoon in his mouth as a child, he helped his father sell tea at the railway station in Gujarat. At the age of eight, he started going to the local branch of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh(RSS) and is named as a junior cadet for RSS. His teachers in school describe him as an average student with good debating skills since the beginning of schooling.
Left home at the age of 17 years:
He was engaged to a local girl, still a child, Jashodaben Narendra Bhai Modi. Narendra Modi rejected the arranged marriage and came out of the marriage. At the same time, he graduated from high school. Due to his decision to quit the marriage, he had to face family tensions that made him leave the home in 1967.
Ensuing two years Modi spent in traveling across India, mainly Northern India and the North-East. In his own words, he recollects visiting many Hindu ashrams (monasteries). After visiting Swami Vivekananda's ashram located near Kolkata, he was deeply influenced by Vivekananda. Sources close to him say that he changed himself in many aspects of life with the influence of Vivekananda. He visited many other Hindu ashrams. However, his stay in each ashram was a short stint due to lack of required college education. He then visited a few other places like Calcutta, West Bengal, Assam, and Guwahati. He came back to Ahmedabad to work in his uncle's canteen at Gujarat State Road Transportation.
Became active in RSS:
During this period, Modi reconnected himself with RSS. After the Indo-Pakistan war in 1971, he stopped working for his uncle and became a full-time campaigner for the RSS. He became a regional organizer and received a degree in political science in a distance education course from Delhi university. After 5 years, he received Master of Arts degree in political science from Gujarat university in the year 1982.
Beginning of the Political Career
Emergency declared in India during 1975:
During Emergency which was declared on 26 June 1975 by then prime minister Indira Gandhi, Modi was leading the All India student wing of the RSS. He was forced to underground in Gujarat to avoid his arrest. He wrote a book 'The Struggles of Gujarat' in the Gujarati language during the emergency period. He was holding demonstrations against the government and was printing pamphlets opposing the government and was distributing the same in Delhi.
Promoted as BJP general secretary in May 1998:
Modi was assigned by the RSS to BJP in 1985. Modi was elected as organizing secretary of the party's Gujarat unit in 1988, making an entry into electoral politics. As a party secretary, his contribution was recognized as responsible for the BJP victory in 1995 state assembly elections. In November, he was elected as BJP national secretary and transferred to Delhi to take up the responsibility of the party activities. His electoral strategy in many occasions has proved beneficial for BJP to win a majority in elections. Modi was promoted as BJP general secretary of the party in May 1998.
Modi as Chief Minister of Gujarat (2001-2014) :
In 2001, Narendra Modi was chosen by BJP leaders as a replacement to the existing Chief minister Mr. Patel whose administration was not satisfactory and was criticized by Modi for his poor administration. Modi was appointed as chief minister with the responsibility of preparing BJP for December 2002 elections. As chief minister, he favored privatization and small government concept.
Gujarat Riots of 2002:
Severe violence occurred in Gujarat in 2002. Modi, the then chief minister, gave a public statement that local muslims were responsible for the burning of the train near Godhra which was carrying hindu passengers returning from Ayodhya after attending a religious ceremony held at the site of the demolished Babri Masjid. A bandhwas called by Vishwa Hindu Parishad. There were riots and anti-muslim violence everywhere in Gujarat. Over 2000 people reported to have been killed in the violence. The violence included incidents like mass rape, mutiliation of women, etc. The riot became a hot topic for debate and involvement of Modi in inducing the violence was suspected. People called it as an example of 'State Terrorism'. Modi had to face an enquiry by the 'Special Investigation Team' to make clear his involvement in the violence. However, there were no evidences against Modi. In 2012, the case was closed with the consent of the Supreme Court.
Aftermath of the riots:
People from the state and outside demanded Modi's resignation from the office. Modi resigned as the chief minister of Gujarat. During subsequent election also he used anti-Muslim rhetoric in his campaigns though he denied it later.
On 22 December 2002 he won the election and became the chief minister of Gujarat for the 2nd term.
Second Term as Chief Minister of Gujarat (2002-2007)
After being accused as anti-Muslim, his attention diverted from 'Hindutva' to Gujarat's economic development. His economic policies were welfare oriented and greatly appreciated. He started taking independent decisions on state and administrative matters and stopped consulting his party leadership organizations.
He was greatly responsible for reducing the corruption in the state. The literacy level rose. Each major financial transactions in the state were brought to his notice with the intention of curbing illegal financial activity in the state. He established Financial and Technology Park in Gujarat. In 2007, he signed a deal worth Rs. 6.6 trillion in the state. His anti-Muslim image continued to stay further. He stressed the requirement of state security on the coastal line after Mumbai blasts in 2006.
Third Term as Chief Minister 2007-2012
Modi's popularity as an efficient chief minister of the state won him for the third term. During this term, agriculture development took a significant boost. Many irrigation projects and building dams took place in the state. Cotton cultivation brought good revenue to the state. Rural areas got electricity connections. The dynamic development and rapid economic upliftment in Gujarat have been branded as 'Vibrant Gujarat'. It became a debatable topic in the nation.
Fourth term 2012-2014
During his fourth term as a chief minister of Gujarat, he made an effort to attract foreign investment. In connection with the intention, he traveled to China, Singapore, and Japan. There was a travel ban from Western nations in speculation of his involvement in the 2002 Gujarat Riots. Subsequently, with his prominence as the Prime Minister of India, all those nations lifted the ban and invited him for a national visit.
In 2014 Indian General Elections:
Narendra Modi won in two constituencies. BJP led NDA won the general elections. Modi, who was the elected leader of the BJP after his party's victory, was appointed as Prime Minister by India's president. He vacated one of his won seats as the law insists that an MP can't represent more than one constituency.
Prime Minister (2014-Present) :
Modi was sworn in as prime minister of India on 26 May 2014. He succeeded in becoming the 'FIRST' prime minister in many areas as a politician, including addressing the issue of illegal money.
Narendra Modi's economic policies are subtle and specific. Most of the policies pointed towards national wealth creation and social welfare of the nation. His contribution to poverty alleviation is commendable. As a prime minister, he announced measures to speed up the efficiency of India's economy. He ordered reform among bureaucrats of the Indian Administrative Service to ensure a more efficient bureaucracy. The Planning Commission was abolished with the introduction of a think tank named NITI ayog.
Foreign Direct Investment policy:
Modi government liberalized India's foreign direct investment policy. As a consequence, in 2015, India became The World's Top FDI destination, overtaking China and the USA. Modi's 'Make In India' initiative encouraged foreign companies to manufacture products in India, the intention of which was to turn India into a global manufacturing hub.
Policies for the poor villagers:
Modi introduced many welfare policies keeping in mind even the poor villagers. His concept of 'smart villages' helped for providing all basic necessities to the villagers' facilities like internet connection, clean water, electricity, sanitation, better schools, etc.
Special Policies towards economic development:
In 2016, 'Goods and Services Tax Bill' was introduced in the Indian parliament, remarked as the biggest economic reforms in India.
On November 9, 2016, Modi demonetized Rs 500 and 1000 bank notes with a goal to curb rampant corruption, black money, fake notes and terrorism in the country.
Sanitation and Health
Modi government developed the policy for the Universal Healthcare System. In 2014, Modi launched 'Swachch Bharat Abhiyan (Clean India)' campaign with the goal of stopping open defecation, manual scavenging, and an efficient waste management system.
Modi government increased defense spending for modernization and expansion of Indian Armed Forces. His measures to curb terrorism are manifold. Modi declared Pakistan as the exporter of terrorism. He entered into an agreement with Nagaland to end Naga insurgency. On September 2016, Indian Army conducted a surgical strike on the terror launch pads in POK, though Pakistan denied the statement.
Modi introduced 'Digital India' Programme. His goal was to boost digital literacy, introducing electronic records in place of paperwork in governance, manufacturing electronic goods etc. In September 2015, he visited silicon valley in the USA, to meet Mark Zuckerberg, Sunder Pichai, and Satya Nadella for promoting Digital India program.
Modi, after taking charge as prime minister of India, visited many foreign countries to strengthen the ties with other nations. His foreign visit included also his visit to all neighboring countries. His visit to the USA ushered major economic relationship with the country. While addressing UN General Assembly, he urged people to adopt yoga and also to mark 'International Yoga Day'.His policies towards promoting Missile Technology is remarkable. He completed 51 foreign trips across 42 countries to strengthen the diplomatic relations with them.
Article source: Wikipedia
Modi as an individual:
He is a vegetarian and appreciates simple life. Due to his exposure to poverty, maybe, he has a deep concern for the poor and village people that resulted in the introduction of many welfare policies in India. He is a smart politician who wants to make the all round development of the country.
Modi is a disciplined person who practices yoga, gives importance to cleanliness. Many of his policies marked this goal. He introduced good economic policies and environmental measures too. He became popular due to his deep national concern.