For the last five years, the government has launched one scheme after another and initiated many welfare measures. Modi took big and difficult decisions which were both appreciated and criticised. Developments like cleanliness campaign, the building of toilets, surgical air strikes against terrorists in Pakistan’s territory, pro-active approach against terrorism, Jan Dhan Yojana, Good and Services Tax (GST), Demonetisation were the chief hallmarks of the Modi regime. It was rightly said that Modi will be judged on his bold steps in the upcoming election, which may be like a referendum on his policies. Modi is lucky to be blessed with so weak an opposition — a ragtag coalition of parties, led by the Congress, with no agenda other than to defeat him. He gave reservation to economically backward upper-caste families, a measure designed to retain the traditional vote base of his party. Money for farmers, targeted cash transfers to the poor and a budget full of goodies for different sections of society soothed frayed nerves of voters.
He will now continue to be the tallest leader of the country as his charisma has continued to influence a large number of voters now. Modi is the first Indian prime minister to attack Pakistan in its own territory, on its own sovereign soil. It is clear that India’s air strikes on the Balakot region in Pakistan in the aftermath a deadly attack on a military convoy in Pulwama district of Indian-administered Kashmir managed to reverse the downward trend in Modi’s popularity ratings. After the Pulwama attack, however, Modi’s rating shot up to 62 per cent, as he rode on the “revenge” wave that swept through the country. Modi’s bold airstrikes won popular acclaim and boosted his popularity. India had had the most hardworking government ever, which rolled out more than 133 schemes and interacted systematically with the beneficiaries to understand how they had been received and how they could be improved. Though Modi failed to fulfil his 2014 campaign promise in some of the schemes he has launched to bring the “good days ahead” and an era of nation-wide prosperity, he still left his mark on India. He is keeping the nation secure and keeping India’s head high. In his victory speech, Modi has given a good message that “There were only two castes in India now. The poor and those who want to work to bring them out of poverty. We need to empower both.”
Modi had rightly asserted that the BJP-led NDA was coming back to power with a thumping majority and added saying that “These ‘maha-milawati log’ (in reference to Mahagatbandhan leaders) are busy abusing me. The more they abuse me, the more lotus will bloom.” A government with a full majority has once again come back after remaining in power for five years. The BJP had been making strenuous effort to gain hold in Left-ruled states and has been playing the caste and community cards. The historic victory for Modi is a stepping stone in the Indian political arena. As Lotus blooms once again, one cannot deny the fact the combo of Modi card and Amit Shah’s strategy playing the role at the background for such a historic win.
BJP and Modi got a full majority because every citizen believes that India is safe in PM Modi’s hands. He has made India reach great heights for the Army and the poor people. He has improved India’s image. With farming in crisis, unemployment on the rise and growing fears that India is heading for a recession, the economy will the biggest and challenging issue for BJP.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)