Promises, Reality & Slogans to drumbeat 2019

By Cleofato A Coutinho
01 June 2017 19:39 IST


The central government is celebrating the 3 years with a public relation extravaganza called the ‘Modi Fest’. The sweeping victory in the UP election  provides the necessary impetus to drumbeat launching of 2019 general elections campaign. The government has given us its report card providing itself A+ with almost 9 out of 10. Three years is certainly sufficient time to undertake critical analysis of government performance. Our government has special talent for dishing out figures. An analysis must be made of the promises and a reality check on delivery, as there is a wide spread impression that the government has been successful in seducing the media like never before with thousands of ‘bhakts’  trolling social media with the principal opposition party running out of ideas to deal with the Modi wave. Adam Roberts of the Economist speaks highly of Narendra Modi’s self-confidence but states he is yet to show how he will deliver.

The assessment cannot be done by the number of election victories at Assembly and municipal polls though it is an indicator of his popularity. The approval rating   by media houses based upon on-line surveys may not be a correct indicator. The present  central government assumed power against the backdrop of scams, policy paralysis and promise of  ‘achche din’ which meant economic recovery with bringing in  black  money stacked abroad and promise to create two crore jobs in five years. The government must be judged on these parameters

Even if the government’s methodology in calculating the GDP and the index of industrial production is not questioned, the three years of ‘achche din time’ 2014-2017 is almost equivalent to the bad days of UPA -II (2012-2014).  

On the creation of jobs, the performance has been disastrous. The labour ministry has released embarrassing figures. The employment generated has fallen below two lakhs jobs a year. The total jobs generated are almost half of that of the three years of the ‘bad times’ of UPA. ‘Make in India’, ‘skill India’ or for that matter ‘Swachch Bharat’ have all remained ‘slogans’. According to Ashok Gulati, the agricultural economist, “the three years of NDA produced 1.7% growth in agricultural sector. In a last three years of UPA, the agricultural sector grew by 3.5%”.  The National Crimes Record Bureau shows an increase in loss of life after 2014. When the farmers of the food bowl of the country ‘Punjab’ resort to suicides like the rest of the country, the disaster in the agricultural sector can only get highlighted. One can always give the benefit of doubt due to successive droughts in 2014 and 2015, but the benefit of the steep decline in the global energy prices is not at all spoken about.

The government’s record in bringing in black money as promised before election has led the crusader on black money Ram Jethmalani to abuse the prime Minister with the choicest abuses. Bank credit growth in the last six months has been around 4% and that is supposed to be lowest in last 60 years. On the educational front the budget allocation has actually dropped from 2.44% of the union budget in 2015-2016 to 2.19% in 2016-2017 while this year’s heath care location stands at 1.2% of the GDP with emphasis on insurance and private sector in the health care area.  

The crisis gripping the state of Jammu and Kashmir is turning from bad to worse. The only area in which the government seem to have excelled is in overlooking the atmosphere of hate via vigilante violence, though the government claims to have nothing to do with those creating hate. Cow, beef and cattle sale have become USP for the ruling party.  

The promise of accountability mechanism via the Lok Pal does not see the light of day despite the UPA II bringing in such a law in January 2014.  The Whistle Blower Protection Act brought in by the UPA government is also in the state of limbo and RTI activists are up in arms against the various rules proposed under the RTI Act.  The accountability apparatus is almost non-existent as the NGOs and in particular those critical of the government are kept busy in the courts fighting for survival for funds or to avoid being persecuted.  Harish Khare, the editor in chief of ‘Tribune’, has summed up our misery “as a nation, we remained seduced. Our anxieties and animosities are kept bubbling; and, we are all comfortable with #hashtag illiberalism. We have been induced to believe that we are being governed by less corrupt and more effective rulers than we were during the days of the parasitic Gandhis…”  

The present government came to power on a mandate built on promises of high expectations. The final report is certainly below average in comparison to the promises held out. But on the positive side Narendra Modi has provided charismatic leadership to the party. He is an energetic campaigner and a great speaker. The success in Uttar Pradesh has put him in much above the party as against the failing leadership of the Congress party. After its defeat in 2004 and in particular after 2009 the BJP kept up the fight. The Congress party is failing an aggressive opposition. In 2014 the people looked out for an alternative and got one in the BJP. As 2019 draws close it looks like the people have no alternative. The central government is shining against the lacklustre opposition. But who knows what is in store in 2019? A.B. Vajpayee was also a shining star in India’s political horizon until the electorate showed the BJP its place in 2004!


Disclaimer: Views expressed above are the author's own.

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Cleofato A Coutinho

Cleofato Almeida Coutinho is a senior lawyer and one of the constitutional expert in Goa. A member of Law Commission of Goa, he also teaches at Kare College of Law in Madgao.

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All GOAN TIATRISTS must come together at one platform and sing a Song for a Cause

#GOANSFORGOA (We are the Goans) same like #USAFORAFRICA (We are the world)!

In this Song, Goans must tell the Goans to protect Goa and indirectly must expose Congress for Corruptions and BJP for Communalisms. In this Song, Goans Tiatrists must ask Goans to stand United against Mopa Airport & Recovery of looted 35 Thousands Corers of Goans from Congress!

- Jack De Goan, Goa | 22 nd June 2017 21:07


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