Modi and his ‘India First’ governance

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Modi and his ‘India First’ governance

Wednesday, 31 May 2023 | Tarun Chugh

Modi and his ‘India First’ governance

The ‘India First’ policy has also been guiding the nation on the path of expansion of economy. PM Modi has given special focus to infrastructure

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given India First governance in the last nine years. In each area of governance, India First has been the guiding principle. India’s national interests guide the governance. In the last nine years, PM Modi has shown a ‘Yes, we can do it’ approach. This has worked wonders.

India is now the fifth-largest economy. The developed world wants India on its side. Developing countries want India to be their voice. The poor nations look at India with hope. The small island nations in the Pacific, Indian Ocean, Caribbean, and elsewhere have seen India as their saviour. African and Latin American nations have seen Indian healing touch when the Covid-19 pandemic wreaked havoc with death tolls.

It was PM Modi who went to Australia in 2014, after a gap of 28 years, to deepen the bond between the two nations. Now, India and Australia are strategic partners. There are several countries, including Papua New Guinea, where PM Modi’s visits were the first in several years. This approach with 360-degree foreign policy has helped India in gaining several friends and well-wishers all across the globe. Now, Indians in any part of the world are warmly received. The Indian passport has weight at the immigration offices. Indian tricolour is well recognized. This was made possible by PM Modi’s India First policy and also by putting into practice the ancient philosophy of ‘Vasudhev Kutumbkam’.

PM Modi has also freed the entrepreneurial power of the youth of the country. This he did by pushing the India First policy in the sphere of the economy. The GEM (Government e-Marketplace) portal has eliminated the scope for middlemen. This has helped the businessmen without any bias and hindrance to bid for the procurements by the government departments. It brought much-needed confidence among the businessmen that they can take part in economic activities without paying bribes.

The spread of confidence touched the youngsters. Over one lakh startups were founded in recent years. More than 100 are now unicorns, gaining a valuation exceeding $1 billion. One such startup from Hyderabad even launched a small satellite. PM Modi’s India First policy saw the government opening the space sector to private companies. Now, hundreds of startups are working in the space sector by taking advantage of the opening up of the sector.

The India First mantra brought the ‘Panch Pran of Amrit Kaal’ – The goal of developed India; to remove any trace of colonial mindset; take pride in our roots; unity among all Indians; and a sense of duty among citizens.

The five guiding principles were backed by actions, and they are showing results. India improved its ranking in the ease of doing business, by moving from 142 in 2014 to 63 in 2019, which now has moved to 43. Several offences in the Companies Act were decriminalized to instil confidence among businessmen.

The India First policy has seen unemployment declining to 6.5 per cent in January 2023 from 7.2 per cent in January 2020. The skilling of the youth has gained pace. Bilateral agreements with a few developed countries for skilling the youth to their requirement has added more momentum. The state governments have also now realized that they must dedicate their resources to the skilling of the youth.

This again is the result of the India First policy of PM Modi India has emerged as the second largest manufacturer of mobile phones. India has also taken a huge stride in the automobile sector. India's First policy guided in policy thrust to gain elf-reliance in the manufacturing of chips. Two big-ticket FDIs have come to Gujarat and Karnataka to help India achieve self-reliance in the manufacturing of chips.

India's First policy again was in action when PM Modi launched the Atmanirbha campaign for the defence sector. Several of the weapons, ammunition, equipment and others which were imported in the past have to be compulsorily manufactured within India. This shift has created a vibrant private sector working in the defence area. Also, a number of startups have joined the Atmanirbhar campaign. The linkages with the research and development agencies of the government with the private sector as part of the hand-holding exercise have helped in creating competitive firms, that are competing with the best in the world.

The India First policy has also been guiding India on the path of expansion of the economy. PM Modi has given a special focus on infrastructure. PM Gati Shakti Scheme has become a key intervention.

India is also looking to become a top global destination for tourists. With the G20 presidency, PM Modi has brought the positive image of India to several countries. Now, the people in several countries are curious about India. It is to the credit of the India First policy of PM Modi that the policy attention has been given to sectors that were never paid attention to and they are now giving new dimensions to the economy.

(Author is the BJP national general secretary) 

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