With Narendra Modi led BJP government completing four years in May 2018, listed below are four significant changes implemented by BJP in their tenure which Congress couldn’t.
Goods & Services Tax (GST)
- Building consensus with all the state governments to roll out GST – India’s largest Tax reform since independence which transformed all 29 states and 7 union territories into a single market.
- Congress-led UPA government had struggled for years to roll out the reform over revenue concerns by Maharashtra (Congress ruled), Tamilnadu (non-BJP), Odisha (non-BJP), Kerala (non-BJP) and most of the other states.
Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC)
- For long, Industrialists could borrow as much as they wanted from banks and default without any impact.
- As explained in this article earlier, IBC (Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code) is a significant reform which is effectively addressing Bank NPAs worth INR 10 lakh crores ($150 billion) and bringing the money back into the system.
The ban on Instant Triple Talaq (verbal divorce)
- The practice was banned in Islamic countries like Egypt since 1929 and even in Pakistan since 1961.
- In 1980’s Shah Bano case, Congress brought law to prevent such divorced women from receiving financial maintenance. This got them support from powerful religious clerics who controlled the Muslim vote bank.
- In Oct 2016, BJP government submitted an affidavit that it does not support the practice as it is discriminatory against Muslim women and impacts their fundamental rights.
- Kapil Sibal from Congress argued in court in favor of continuing instant Triple Talaq in India “as a matter of faith”.
- Just to reiterate – even in 2017, Congress leader supported continuing this practice in India as a matter of religious sentiment – a practice that is not allowed in 19 Islamic countries including Pakistan and Bangladesh.
Abolishing Hajj Subsidy
- In 2012, Supreme Court had ordered abolition by 2022 but BJP government scrapped it by 2018 (4 years ahead of deadline).
- Congress had mandated flying only by Air India and fixed high airfares.
- BJP brought in more airlines, reduced the ticket prices and passed on actual financial benefits to hajj travelers. In the new arrangement, the government does not incur the financial burden of subsidy and travelers save thousands of rupees per person which is a win-win situation for all.
It is indeed refreshing to see much needed economic and social reforms that will go a long way in improving the life of every Indian.