Four years of BJP Government
The BJP government headed by Narendra Modi came to power in 2014, with a promise to make ‘Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat (One India, Great India), ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas’ (With All, Development for all). With over four years in office, the government has been able to bring in reforms in all sectors, push growth, bring down red-tapism, take corruption head on and introduce financial discipline to make India one of the most advanced nations in the world., with the fastest growing economy.
The major initiatives by the Union Government in various sectors are –
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised a ‘Paardarshi Bharat’ or Transparent India, free of corruption. He took a bold decision to demonetize Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 currency notes. The revolutionary step was to uproot the cancer of corruption and black money. It would curtail the shadow economy and crack down on the use of illicit and counterfeit cash to fund illegal activity and terrorism, threatening national security.
The consolidation of demonetization was sought to be achieved through Digital Economy, which would make transactions transparent and restrict illegal cash transactions. One of the key advantages of digital economy is it empowers people as government can easily transfer incentives and subsidies directly to Adhaar-linked bank accounts. An offshoot of the digital economy is e-governance, where delivery of all government services would be done electronically, cutting down red-tapism and inconvenience to people.
Goods & Services Tax (GST)
Rolled out on July 01, 2017, GST seeks to bring the entire nation in one tax bracket. The ‘One Nation, One Tax-One Nation-Market regime would entail reduction in overall taxes on goods, by an estimated 25-30%. The new tax regime would also lead to ease of doing business and increase in tax revenue collections.
- Small traders and consumers benefitting with end of multiplicity of taxes and fragmented tax regimes
- Reduction in cascading effect on taxes
- Overall reduction in prices
- Significant decrease in transport time across the country with elimination of check-posts
Clean India-Green India (स्वच्छ भारत-हरित भारत)
On his first address to the nation from the ramparts of Red Fort on August 15, 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had vowed to make India clean and green and launched an initiative named “Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan’. The biggest ever cleanliness drive was launched by Mr. Narendra Modi on Gandhi Jayanti, 2nd October, 2014 at Rajghat in New Delhi.
The Clean India Mission also aims to provide sanitation facilities to every family including toilets, solid and liquid waste system, village cleanliness and safe and adequate drinking water supply. So far, more than 7.25 crore toilets were constructed taking the sanitation coverage from 38% in 2014 to 83%. Over 3.6 lakh villages and over 17 states/UTs were declared open defecation free so far.
All 13.77 crore children in 11.21 lakh government schools now have access to toilet facilities.
Green India is one of the eight missions outlined under the National Action Plan on Climate Change. The Mission goals are to increase forest/tree cover to the extent of 5 million hectares, respond to climate change by a combination of adaptation and mitigation measures. It envisages a holistic view of greening and focuses on multiple ecosystem services, especially, biodiversity, water, biomass, preserving mangroves, wetlands, critical habitats etc. along with carbon sequestration as a co-benefit. Besides, increasing forest based livelihood income of about 3 million households is also the goal of the mission.
A National Air Quality Index has also been launched on April 06, 2015 to monitor the quality of air in major urban centres across the country on real-time basis.
Jan Dhan Yojana
Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana is a national mission for financial inclusion of financially less privileged sections to ensure access to financial services in an affordable manner. It is the biggest financial inclusion scheme in the world.
It was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his maiden address to the nation on August 14, 2014 and launched on August 28, 2014 across the country. So far 31.52 crore Jan Dhan accounts were opened. Indian Postal Payment Bank will take the banking system to the doorstep of the poor and the unbanked.
The Union Government has advanced presentation of budget to 1st February to enable the ministries to operationalise all activities from the commencement of the financial year. Merger of General and Railway Budgets has brought Railways to the centre-stage of Government’s Fiscal Policy. The third financial reform is removal of plan and non-plan classification of expenditure to facilitate holistic view of allocations for sectors and ministries.
Revamping Banking Sector
Merger of five State Bank subsidiaries into State Bank of India to take on global competition. The merger is expected to lead to greater operational efficiency and lower cost of operations.
Pradhan Mantri MUDRA Yojana is a scheme launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on April 08, 2015 to provide loans upto 10 lakh to the non-corporate, non-farm small/micro enterprises. The lending target of the scheme is Rs. 3.0 lakh crores for the Financial Year 2018-19. Of the total loan accounts, 76% are women and more than 50% SCs, STs and OBC.
Digital access to information is the bedrock for a participative, transparent and responsive government. It is a key element to bridge the gap between the government and the stakeholders towards transforming India into a digitally empowered knowledge economy. The government has embarked on an ambitious plan to lay 7.5 lakh kilometres of Optical Fiber Cables (OFC) to connect 2.5 lakh villages with WiFi Hotspot enabled internet connectivity.
From only 83,000 common service centres in 2014, 2.92 lakh centres are active now. One lakh fifteen thousand gram panchayats are now equipped with high speed optical fibre between 2014 and 2018, compared to just 59 between 2011 and 2014. The government has also launched a National Digital Literacy Mission, to make at least one person in every family digitally literate with the requisite skills by 2020.
Make in India
In a bid to make India self-reliant, Prime Minister Modi had launched an initiative named ‘Make in India’ to make India the hub of manufacturing. It would make ‘Saksham Bharat-Swawalambi Bharat’ or Empowered India, Self-reliant India. With almost 35% of Indian population in the productive age-group and a large pool of skilled workforce, India has the capability to become the manufacturing hub. An added advantage to the industry is that India is a huge market for its products.
Skill building is the basic and foremost step towards the success of Make in India. With this in mind, the government has taken up various initiatives for the upgradation of the skill set, especially of the rural masses and people in the north-eastern region. It would facilitate new avenues of employment and income generating activities through the intervention of science and technology. By the end of 2015-2016, 13,000 training centres were opened across India for training in 375 trades and 19.85 lakh youth were trained, of which almost 50% were girls.
Stand up India
Two major initiatives that complement the Make in India programme are Stand up India and Start up India. Stand up India seeks to promote entrepreneurship among scheduled castes and tribes and women. So far 54,733 loans were sanctioned by banks to SCs, STs and women borrowers, as at February 2018.
Startup India movement is intended to promote entrepreneurship among youth and harness their knowledge and skill to contribute to national growth.
Farmers’ Honour-India’s Respect (किसान का मान, देश का सम्मान)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has promised, to bring in conducive policy initiatives to drive the growth of agriculture sector so that farming remains the mainstay of Indian economy and sustain the livelihood of a nearly 70% of the population. The target by 2022 is to double the income of farmers.
Record allocation for record outcomes
- Budgetary allocation: Significant rise from Rs. 1,21,082 crores during 2009-14 to Rs. 2,11,694 crores during 2014-19
- Farm credit target: Raised to Rs. 11 lakh crores for 2018-19
- A corpus of Rs. 10,000 to create infrastructure in fishery, aquaculture and animal husbandry sectors
- Agri-Market Infrastructure Fund: A corpus of Rs. 2,000 crores for Agri-Market Infrastructure Fund set up
- National Bamboo Mission: Rs. 1,290 crores to help setting up of small industries and create new employment opportunities in bamboo sector
- Tax incentives: To promote post-harvest agricultural activities
Prime Minister’s Crop Insurance Scheme (प्रधान मंत्री फसल भीमा योजना)
In a bid provide financial support to farmers in the event of failure of any of the notified crop as a result of natural calamities, pests and diseases, the government had launched Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana on January 13, 2016. This is the biggest financial support till date by the Union Government in crop insurance. So far 4.05 crore farmers were covered under the scheme; 379.06 lakh hectares land insured for a sum of Rs. 1,31,519 crores.
Prime Minister’s Housing Scheme (अपना घर, अपनी छत)
A shelter is the dream of every human being, and it is one of the major promises of Narendra Modi government. The government is committed to achieve the objective of Housing for All by 2022 – 75th year of independence.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana on June 25, 2015. It aims to construct 2 crore affordable houses for economically under privileged in urban areas in a span of seven years, till 2022. Earlier, loans were given u to Rs. 6 lakhs at a subsidized rate of 6.5 per cent. Now, housing loans of up to Rs. 9 lakhs and Rs. 12 lakhs get interest subvention of 4 per cent and 3 per cent, respectively.
Over the last three and a half years, around one crore houses were built in urban and rural areas under the scheme.
Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana with an initial allocation of Rs. 500 crores on July 25, 2015 in Patna. It seeks to provide round the clock power to rural households and adequate power to agricultural consumers. The government has been able to electrify all the 18,452 villages, which were without electricity in 2014. Today, all of the country’s 5,97,464 census villages have been electrified.
UJALA – Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All
The initiative was launched on January 05, 2015 with an objective to provide people with affordable energy efficient appliances across the country. More than 29.83 crore LED bulbs were distributed in just four years, saving Rs. 15,497 crores per year for the people.
Healthy India-Able India (स्वस्थ भारत-सबल भारत)
Ayushman Bharat is the world’s largest health insurance initiative. It will provide comprehensive health coverage upto Rs. 5,00,000 per family per year to around 50 crore people.
Mission Indradhanush was launched in 2014 to cover all those children who have been partially vaccinated or not vaccinated during routine immunization rounds. The objective of Mission Indradhanush is to increase full immunization coverage in India to at least 90% children by 2020. It has completed four phases covering 528 districts, wherein 3.15 crore children were vaccinated and 80.63 lakh pregnant females immunized.
Healthcare for all
In order to provide affordable and quality healthcare for all, the government has brought 1054 essential medicines, including lifesaving drugs, under price control regime after May 2014, giving the consumer total benefit of more than Rs. 10,000 crores.
Besides, the government also has brought Cardiac Stents and Knee Implants under price cap.
The decision has brought the cost of Stents to the tune of 85% and Knee Implants by 69%, providing relief to a large number people.
Under the Pradhan Mantri Bharatiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana, more than 3,000 Janaushadi outlets have been opened to ensure availability of quality medicines at affordable prices to all. Apart from Janaushadhi Stores, the government has also opened 83 Amrit stores, which provide drugs for cancer and cardio-vascular diseases with cardiac implants at a 60 to 90 per cent discount on prevailing market rates. So far 17.97 lakh patients have been benefitted from Amrit outlets, with a total saving to the tune of Rs. 103.55 crores to patients.
National Dialysis Service Programme
Under the Prime Minister’s Dialysis Programme, support is being provided to all states for provision of free dialysis services for poor. Dialysis services will be started in all district hospitals, with six machines, which will be extended upto 10 machines per facility. So far, 497 Dialysis Units have been made operational and around 2.5 lakh patients have availed services with nearly 25 lakh dialysis sessions held so far.
Yoga for Health
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his maiden address at the UN General Assembly made an impassioned plea to adopt International Yoga Day. Recognising the universal appeal of Yoga, the United Nations proclaimed the June 21 as International Yoga Day by a resolution. It aims to raise awareness worldwide of the many benefits of practicing Yoga. A year later, UNESCO inscribed Yoga on the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the first International Yoga Day celebrations in New Delhi on June 21, 2015.
Beti Bachao Beti Padhao
In a bid to arrest the trend of decline in the Child Sex Ratio (CSR), Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched Beti Bachao Beti Padhao initiative, with an initial funding of Rs. 100 crores.
This is a joint initiative of Ministry of Women and Child Development, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Ministry of Human Resource Development. Its objectives are prevention of gender biased sex selective elimination, ensure survival and protection of the girl child and ensure education of girl child. It also promotes compulsory registration of pregnancies and institutional deliveries It is now being implemented in 161 districts across the country, which have low Child Sex Ratio at Birth. The scheme will progressively be extended to all districts of the country.
Sukanya Samridhi Yojana
Under the Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao campaign, special bank accounts will be opened to every girl child to meet the expenses of education and marriage. The account provides small affordable deposits at the highest rate of interest. More than 1.26 crore accounts for the girl child were opened and around Rs. 20,000 crore deposited so far.
The Union Government amended the Maternity Benefit Act in March 2017 to provide 26 weeks’ paid maternity leave mandatory for women working in any organisation, one of the highest durations in the world. This will enable the mother to take care of the new born child and provide exclusive breast feeding for the first six months.
Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (स्वच्छ ईंधन, बेहतर जीवन)
Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (स्वच्छ ईंधन, बेहतर जीवन)
The Union Cabinet launched the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana on May 01, 2016, which envisages of smoke free rural India. It aims to benefit five crore families especially women living below poverty line by providing free LPG connections by 2019. It will help reduce health disorders, air pollution and deforestation. The Cabinet has approved Rs. 8,000.00 crores for the next three years.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the scheme in Ballia, Uttar Pradesh on May 01, 2016. So far 3.8 crore LPG connections were provided to BPL households. The target for the scheme has been raised to provide LPG connections to 8 crore women.
Ganga Cleaning Programme – Namami Gange
‘It's my destiny to serve Maa Ganga’
-PM Narendra Modi at Varanasi on May 17, 2014.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the thanksgiving speech, after his election from Varanasi Lok Sabha constituency, vowed to clean up the River Ganges. A year later, the Union Government launched a programme to clean up Ganga. The Union Cabinet approved a budget outlay of Rs. 20,000/- crore for the ambitious Ganga rejuvenation programme – Namami Gange. Its twin objectives are effective abatement of pollution, conservation and rejuvenation of National River Ganga.
Resurgent India, Self-Reliant India (संवर्धित भारत-स्वालम्बी भारत)
India has leapfrogged in technology, especially spacefaring. India is the first nation in the world to successfully reach Mars orbit in the first attempt, when the Mars Orbiter Mission (Mangalyaan) was launched on November 05, 2013,
On February 15, 2017, Indian again scripted history with the successful launch of a record number of 104 Satellites by ISRO in a single mission. Of these, 96 co-passenger satellites were from USA.
On January 12, 2018 India successfully launched the 100th satellite – Cartosat 2 series for weather observation.
With the acquisition of forth fastest supercomputer in the world, weather and climate research in India has improved tremendously. India is the fourth country in the club of supercomputers of such capacity.
Play India (खेलो इंडिया)
Khelo India marks a watershed moment in the history of India sports, as it aims at mainstreaming sports as a tool for individual development, community development, economic development and national development. The Union Government has approved funds to the tune of Rs. 1,756 crores for the period 2017-2020. It has a component to identify and assist medal probable for 2020 Olympics. The first Khelo India school games was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 31st January, 2018, in which 3,507 players from 29 states and 7 union territories participated.
A sports talent search portal was launched to provide a transparent platform for talented youth to share their achievements. It also gives a boost to budding sportspersons.
The first-ever training centre with world-class facilities was dedicated for Para Athletes at Gandhinagar, Gujarat on February 05, 2017.