For anyone born on this earth, age passes as a natural progression. How these years have passed and what impact the person has created in those years makes all the difference. As Prime Minister Narendra Modi enters his seventieth year, it may be worthwhile to take a look at recent seven years of him as the Prime Minister. This gives an idea, how well he spent the years.
The things spearheaded by PM Modi from 2014 to 2020 may make a very long list. Hence, we are focussing on one big event or a thing he shaped being in the forefront in each of those years that he has been at the helm of affairs.
2014 – Year of Schemes with Scale and Speed
The year Narendra Modi was elected as Prime Minister of India saw him leading a movement to put the basic things in place. He was the first Prime Minister who talked about toilets from the ramparts of Red Fort. Swachh Bharat Abhiyan was launched, and in the next five years it achieved the milestone of making India Open Defecation Free. It built more than 10 crore rural household toilets which is larger than all the household toilets built in post-Independent India till 2014. In the same year, he took the banks to the doors of the poor by opening bank accounts for them through Jan Dhan Yojana; today, more than 40 crore people have Jan Dhan accounts. This number is more than the population of USA, just to put things in perspective.
2015- Global Recognition for Indian Ethos
Again, one can list many things PM Modi spearheaded in this year including announcing Awas Yojana that builds houses for poor with all basic amenities. But a major step towards exhibition of country’s soft power and establishing Indian ethos at global level happened in that year. Having built over 1.7 crore citizens, the government has managed to house more than twice the population of Singapore.
However, what truly stood apart was the celebration of the first International Yoga Day across the globe on June 21, 2015. Prior to that, PM Modi had pitched for this day at the United Nations, which saw more than 170 countries supporting it. PM Modi himself being a Yoga practitioner has added further weightage to his proposal.
2016- Surgical Strikes on India’s Enemies
In September that year, our soldiers crossed the LOC and carried surgical strike to eliminate terrorists’ launchpad. This brave decision by PM Modi set a new benchmark in dealing with Pakistan while boosting the morale of Indian army and people of India high.
In November that year, another surgical strike of sorts was carried domestically to deliver a blow on corruption. Demonetisation was equally a surprise and bold decision that set many things in order.
2017- Power to People
The scheme SUBHAGYA, aimed at providing electricity to all the willing households, was announced in this year. Before this, PM Modi had promised in his Independence Day speech of 2015 that within 1,000 days, all villages will be electrified. That was achieved before the deadline but PM Modi didn’t want to rest there. He aimed at total household electrification. More than 2 crore households have been given electricity after October 2017.
2018 – Women Break the Glass Ceiling
Be it the toilet building exercise, or providing free LPG connections, it is the concern about women that has shaped major policies of the Modi government. But the year 2018 is important in the context of women because it goes beyond the basics. It is in this year that Permanent Commission for Women in armed forces was announced by PM Modi in his Independence Day Speech. It was fully followed to ensure that women can lead on any front.
2019- Year of Calling Out Bluff masters
The biggest bluff was called out by the brave decision of PM Narendra Modi to attack Pakistan deep inside its territory. The bluff that Pakistan has been maintaining for a long-time was that it will use nuclear weapons if at all India strikes. With the Balakot airstrike, the nuclear war bluff of Pakistan was effectively nullified.
In the same year many other bluffs were also called off. One that also involved Pakistan was the abrogation of Article 370. Both Pakistan and some political elements within India had threatened grave consequences if the abrogation of that article and the reorganisation of the state took place.
Quota for the Economic Weaker section was also ensured that year. Many had opined that this was also unviable constitutionally and can’t be implemented. But PM Modi’s political will found a way to ensure justice for the poor among general category without costing anything for people who already have reservations.
2020- Return of Shri Rama
The moments of PM Modi announcing the formation of Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teertha Kshetra, his participation in Bhoomi pujan of temple will be cherished for long-time in history.
The pictures of Modi taking part in the Rath Yatra demanding the Ram temple back in eighties and nineties, and the moment of 2020 where he as the Prime Minister performing the Bhoomi pujan have dominated social media, underscoring the relentless spirit for a cause which is civilizational in nature.
If the mere counting of major moments of Modi’s life only in the last seven years provides this much of wide-ranging topics, the impact of his seventy year life on public sphere is certainly enormous.