Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Failure of Manmohan regime: Are We, the people, to be blamed

I cannot agree more with my good friend, Binu, a journo and an expert commodity watcher, that: In early 2000, the big hope of India becoming a great nation with intelligent people with extraordinarily skills are shattered. A decade later, I see this country as a nation of a certain unscrupulous elements out to loot whatever ....

My response: has been

To a large extent people voted themselves into this by voting in so called UPA: Unscrupulously Pathetic Alliance in 2004
--- this happens when a country of 120 crore leave their fate on an Italian lady!

Checklist: in 2004 u had Shivraj Patil as Home minister, Lalu as rail minister, and above all PM with a golden silence and 'mmeenu ki approach' and of course Sonia with her little knowledge and commitment....only for her son, Rahul -- who ultimately stands exposed in UP and at the same time lacked the vital will-power!!

Initial few years/months since UPA took over power in 2004 went along okay for India, probably as an impact of some good works and the foundations laid by the NDA government. In 2004 and aftermath, I too strongly believed that 'India Shining' was a misnomer, but in circa 2012, who can dispute that THINGS WERE MUCH BETTER IN 2002, 2003, 2004 AND THIS DESPITE GUJARAT'S RIOTS.
NOW, the moment u say these: u r labelled :: Nagpur-walla.... I am not.

But, today, any honest analysis would suggest that things have not turned the way it appeared when Vajpayee government was voted out. If Gujarat riots of 2002 was a tragedy, the bigger national tragedy was Indian voters punished Vajpayee regime for the foly of Modi regime. And today, if we want BJP reviving, the hopes are ironically pinned on Narendra Modi only notwithstanding skirmishes from Nitish kumar.

On development front, Modi has also set the pace for inclusive growth, something cherished and given a lip-service in most cases. There is no denying that at the national level too, despite having someone like Dr Manmohan Singh at the helm, too much of growth has been concentrated in a narrow part of the economy – IT, BPO and some urban-based sectors. But in Modi’s Gujarat, there have been actions of the ground for generating mass employment with focused approach for expansion in manufacturing. The Gujarat government, despite its lapses, has also taken steps for high-value agriculture and food processing.

Gujarat today is a manufacturing hub especially as an emerging leader in auto sector.

Therefore, what can be the measure of Modi’s success rate on the developmental front?
He has put the subject of rebalancing the growth chart on the agenda. The question in Gujarat and in those minds interested in Gujarat affairs is now whether his developmental saga has to be checked or reversed. On the contrary, the clamour is for taking these to the newer heights.

Like his critics and admirers admit, Modi functions like a modern day CEO laying emphasis on the outcome and often allegedly putting the rules and normal norms into backburner. If his government helped Ratan Tata in 2008, it did come to the help other corporate players as well from Bambardier to Maruti. Such delivery level is appreciated but skeptics also wonder whether all procedures are being followed or reduced to a mere whimsical clearance by the chief minister just because it would go well with his image building exercises. A good-governance should also have proper checks and balances; and these are not happening.

So there are already talks about the cost of making things hassle free for big businessmen. But, first hand accounts say even small-time entrepreneurs are benefiting by the overall atmosphere. The state government officials deny that there is any special treatment for anyone and that a clear policy driven approach make things move. Many things and essential works are done in advance through IT facilities and thus when entrepreneurs or business houses come to the government for final clearance, things move fast.

Industry players like Adi Godrej and Ratan Tata have time and again said that single party government and a decisive chief minister also contribute their part in pushing matters, unlike in a state like Maharashtra wherein the pulls from coalition partners like NCP and Congress often end up creating hassles.

Even in single-party Congress-ruled Haryana and Andhra Pradesh, these are lacking because the fear of high command, some sacred cows in Delhi often prevent things moving. Industrialists admit that the cross purposes the government and the Sonia Gandhi-led NAC or even Rahul Gandhi himself function often add to the administrative and business delivery woes even at the government of India level.

Moreover, some point out that Congress has union ministers like Jairam Ramesh, who as in-charge of environment ministry, often blocked projects deciding by the tour programme of his ‘real boss’ – Rahul Gandhi. In Gujarat, to the contrary, Modi has put even his party into the second fiddle and other onetime influential forces like VHP and Praveen Togadia have been forced vanished from the scene.


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