With 2019 General Elections just about a year away, the government seems to be gearing up and focussing on communicating the policies implemented in the last 4 years. Prime Minister Modi has given a fresh interview to Swarajya magazine in which he has highlighted the achievements of the central government.
In an interview to the magazine, Prime Minister Narendra Modi presented a glimpse into what his government has achieved in the past 4 years and what his plan of action for the future is.
There were 7 key issues covered by the interview, and here is a summary of how Prime Minister answered questions on those key issues.
On the corporate sector:
Corporate sector can help India’s development. For example, the presence of corporate sector in agriculture sector is quite small. Prime Minister Modi said that changes can be made in this area. He reinforced Indian enterprise and Foreign Direct Investment’s (FDI) need in the defence sector. He said that corporate sector can play an important role in the development of the country.
On the merger of the banks
The Prime Minister said:
“Before our government, it was just a matter of merger, we have worked in this direction. We have merged five banks.
He said that the government also improved the status of the five banks by the merger.
On retreating from privatization
The Prime Minister said the accusation is absolutely wrong. The government has made important disinvestments.
“As for Air India, the government has done what it had to with utmost sincerity. You have to differentiate between the lack of response to one sale offer and a policy decision. At the cabinet level, we have cleared the sale of not only Air India but several other (loss-making) public sector units – this itself is a historical in many ways; that they are yet to be sold is the result of timing and process. We don’t want to make a sale where we will be accused of selling something for X amount when we could have got more. But the policy decisions for strategic sales have already been taken”.
On Minimum Government, Maximum Governance
The Prime Minister said that the aim of Minimum Government is to make the lives of people hassle-free, often by removing the hindrances a government can create and to let people achieve their full potential.
As an example, PM Modi said :
“The move of making self-attestation for submission of document copies. Earlier, people had to look for notaries or gazetted officers and request them for attestation. Often, they even ended up paying a Rs 50 or 100 for this. Now, we have shown that the government trusts its people, we reduced a layer of government and it was a relief to crores of people.. We also scrapped interviews for Class 3 and Class 4 jobs in the government. One less layer of government, one less avenue for nepotism and corruption, and a boost to honest candidates.”.
On challenges of the economy
Prime Minister Modi said that at the time when his government assumed power, the condition of the economy was very bad. The budget figures given by Finance Minister P Chidambaram during the UPA government were also under suspicion. He said that Chidambaram had never given the correct statement about the economy, but the BJP government has never taken politics on the figures because these people could have many other shocks to the people of the country.
PM Modi dismissed the opposition’s allegation that often the economy of the country is worsening. In an interview to the magazine, the Prime Minister described the note-taking and GST as a positive step of the government, saying that there was no harm to the economy of the country. He said that corporate sector can play an important role in the development of the country.
On job creation
Prime Minister Modi said that the government has given many new employment opportunities in the past 4 years but due to lack of data, the Opposition gets an opportunity to hound the government. The government has evolved in the areas of road transport, railways, airlines and a wide range of infrastructure and due to this, there has been an increase in the employment opportunities in the adequate time.
He said that last year more than 70 lakh jobs were created and poverty was reduced, but what was possible without creating jobs? Modi said that there is a lack of uniformity in political discussion on the subject of employment generation. He said they have the data provided by the states on the subject of employment. For example, the previous Karnataka government claimed to create 53 lakh jobs. The West Bengal government said that during last tenure they created 68 lakh jobs.
Modi asked, “If the state creates a good number of jobs, then is it possible that there is no employment in the country? Is it possible that jobs are being created in the states and the Center will create unemployment situation?” He said that our way of counting jobs according to the jobs created in the new economy is old.
He said, for example, there are around three lakh entrepreneurs across the country who are running the Common Service Center. Start-up jobs are working as an incentive for job creation. He said that there are more than 15,000 start-ups in the country today, which employ thousands of youth whom the government is helping in some way or the other.
On Farmer’s interest
He said that his government has promised to double the income of farmers and for this, the government also has a 4-point strategy. It includes measures such as reduction in cost, increases in production, income after harvest and other ways to find income. He said if one looks closely at the policies of the government, steps have been taken to help the farmers from the seed to the market.
The PM also responded to the magazine on the plight of farmers in the country. He said that due to the schemes of the central government, the situation of the farmers has been better compared to previous governments. Modi said that now farmers are getting full coverage on the crop under Prime Minister’s Crop Insurance Scheme. The Central Government has set a target to double the income of farmers by 2022.
On the issue of doubling the income of farmers, Modi said that earlier the farmers were forced to cultivate such methods which were unscientific. Urea had to face sticks. Now efforts are being made to further enhance farming. There is no shortage of urea and farmers will get one and a half times the minimum support price at their cost. The Prime Minister said that in order to double the income of the farmers by the year 2022, his government has adopted a four-pronged strategy in which cost To ensure proper prices of products, to reduce the losses after harvesting and harvesting and to create more dimension to earn income.
The Prime Minister appealed to increase investment in agriculture from the private sector.