100 Days, India Pays

100 days, 100 Failures of Modi Government 
 
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A. From Empowered Ministers to Emasculated Ministers
 
1. Prime Minister Modi deals directly with Secretaries, bypasses and undercuts Ministers
 
2. Ministers not allowed to choose their own private secretaries
 
3. Home Minister Rajnath Singh cut out of appointment process
 
4. Ministers told how to dress, who to eat with, and when to talk
 
5. When food price inflation is key challenge, Food Minister Paswan cut out of Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs
 
 
B. From Secular India to Communal India
 
6. 100 days, 600+ riots: communal polarization of Uttar Pradesh ahead of polls
 
7. “First wicket has fallen” —  Muslim techie in Pune murdered by emboldened Hindutva fanatics
 
8. Sanjeev Baliyan, accused in the Muzaffarnagar riots, inducted into Modi ministry
 
9. Sangeet Som, accused in the Muzaffarnagar riots, given Z class security
 
10. “Reward the Polarisers”: Yogi Adityanath made BJP campaign chief for UP bypolls
 
11. Communal violence incited in Assam by BJP MPs
 
12. Raghav Lakhanpal, BJP MP from Saharanpur,  indicted for instigating communal clashes
 
13. BJP painted black by Committee Reports, which say all communities hold BJP responsible for communal violence in UP
 
 
 
C. Saffronization of Education
 
14. Smriti Irani, HRD Minister, to give a Hindu perspective to education
 
15. HRD Ministry approves creation of Bharatiya Shiksha Niti Ayog to “Indianize” the education system, advocated by RSS and affiliated with Shiksha Sanskriti Utthan Nyas 
 
16. After his fantasy-filled books are adopted in Gujarat, Dinanath Batra, polarising activist and bogeyman of Indian publishing, to now work on “Indianising” the education system 
 
17. Y Sudershan Rao appointed as Indian Council for Historical Research’s new Chairman: No substantial academic credentials other than as votary of Hindutva
 
 
D. Ministerial Gaffes
 
18. Minister Jitendra Singh, announces rethink on Article 370, then retracts
 
19. Ministry of Defense files affidavit calling Minister VK Singh’s actions as army chief premeditated and illegal. Soon after, VK Singh tweets against new army chief
 
20. Najma Heptulla’s terrible confusion: All Indians are “Hindus.” No, they are all “Hindi’s”
 
21. Smriti Irani’s Yale “degree” – HRD minister knows no difference between certificate and degree
 
22. Arun Jaitley believes that the Nirbhaya tragedy is “just one small rape” and laments that it affected India’s tourism revenues.
 
23. Union Health Minister, Harsh Vardhan believes values are better than condoms to prevent AIDS
 
24. Harsh Vardhan’s vision: To ban the “so called” sex education in schools
 
25. 1.5 lac files junked by the Home Ministry, some related to Gandhiji’s assassination
 
26. Processed food for mid-day meals?: Food processing ministry vs. HRD ministry
 
 
 
E. Undermining the Integrity of Institutions
 
27. Politicized appointment process for Supreme Court judges: Gopal Subramaniam rejected because of his amicus curiae role in Sohrabuddin encounter killing case
 
28. Planning Commission dismantled with no clarity on alternative structures
 
29. Announcement of dismantling of Planning Commission in the middle of a plan process disrupting funds transfers, projects, etc
 
30. Cooperative Federalism? Unilateral announcement of dismantling of Planning Commission without consultation or consent of state governments
 
31. First act of Modi government to amend TRAI so that a specific individual could become Principal Secretary to PM 
 
32. Politicizing the bureaucracy: officers who served under UPA ministers banned from Modi government
 
33. BJP thwarts recognition of Leader of Opposition, putting various constitutional appointments in jeopardy
 
34. Governors eased out in violation of Supreme Court norms
 
35. Institutional safeguards in the Land Acquisition Act to be weakened considerably through amendments
 
36. Health Minister Harsh Vardhan sacks whistle blower Chief Vigilance Officer at AIIMS for exposing corruption
 
 
 
 
F. Foreign Policy Blunders
 
37. India diplomatically isolated in WTO and painted as a global villain
 
38. Firing by Pakistani forces along the international border in the last 45 days possibly the “heaviest” since the 1971 war, according to BSF
 
39. Nirmala Sitharaman cancels Myanmar summit visit, sets back progress toward including India in ASEAN+6 
 
40. India embarrassed by last minute cancellation of visit to South Africa by Venkaiah Naidu-led parliament delegation
 
41. Gaza: Government supports resolution against Israel in UN but curbs debate in India.
 
 
G. Corrupt Parliament, Criminal Parliamentarians
 
42. 13 out of 45 (30%) Union Ministers have serious criminal charges against them
 
43. Irony of BJP fighting criminality and corruption with Amit Shah and Yeddyurappa at the helm
 
44. Supreme Court constitutional bench advises Prime Minister to take action and drop charge sheeted ministers: no response from Modi Government
 
45. Minister Nihal Chand Meghwal accused in a gang rape case
 
46. Officers charge sheeted in fake encounter cases in Gujarat reinstated
 
47. Senior BJP member, Yashwant Sinha, takes law in his own hands, assaults government official
 
48. BJP’s national party president disregards the law and due process: does not appear in CBI court case when summoned
 
 
H. Dissolving Norms, Destroying Environment
 
49. POSCO given thickly forested Khandadhar Hills for mining
 
50. Coal mine expansion projects now allowed without public hearing
 
51. Forest Rights Act diluted: consent by tribal population now replaced by consent by district administration 
 
52. Mid-sized polluting industries allowed to operate within 5 km of national parks, against the Supreme Court mandate of at least 10 km
 
53. Ban on new industries in critically polluted areas lifted, like in Vapi, Gujarat
 
54. Pollution index-based moratoriums lifted, weakening scientific environmental management
 
55. Norms for coal tar processing, sand mining, paper pulp industry eased
 
56. Environmental clearances for irrigation projects weakened
 
57. National Board for Wildlife gutted, and number of independent expert members cut from 15 to 3.
 
58. Truncated National Board for Wildlife clears 140 projects in one day, drawing Supreme Court ire and stay.
 
59. Mining norms diluted by blurring distinction between violate or inviolate forests, making them more vulnerable
 
60. “Laws Keep Changing” – Prakash Javadekar: Judicial power of the National Green Tribunal reduced to administrative power.
 
61. Supreme Court hauls up Modi government for lack of progress on Independent Environment Authority
 
62. Narmada Dam height to be increased, will inundate new areas and displace 2.5 lakh people
 
63. Ken-Betwa river-linking project revived, to adversely affect the Panna tiger reserve 
 
64. Field trials for 21 genetically modified crops approved
 
 
I. Not a Word on Women’s Safety and Reservation
 
65. A mere Rs.100 crore alloted for the Beti bachao scheme.
 
66. Women’s reservation bill ignored entirely thus far, despite promises in BJP Manifesto
 
67. Inadequate initiatives on women’s safety, despite rising number of incidence of violence against women in the past 2 months
 
68. Prime Minister chooses silence over words and action during Badaun  atrocities against women. 
 
 
J. Union Budget: Name Changing but Not Game Changing
 
69. The UPAs National skill development program re-announced as ‘Skill India’ program.
 
70. The PURA (Provision of Urban amenities in Rural Areas) scheme renamed ‘Rurban Mission’
 
71. UPA’s Financial Inclusion plan to provide bank accounts to the poor, copied and continued as ‘Jan Dhan Yojana’ 
 
72.  UPA’s Teacher Education Scheme effectively rehashed as the Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya Teachers Training Programme 
 
73. Model of 100 Smart Cities based on UPA’s  JNNURM Knowledge Base
 
74. Most of the big-ticket allocations retained from UPA’s Interim Budget.
 
75. 100 Crores! Piecemeal budgetary allocations appear to have been prepared hurriedly overnight
 
 
K. No Rail for the Poor
 
76. Railway fare hike of 14% and privatization of stations announced: Right to mobility non-existent for the poor
 
77. High speed bullet trains proposals are inherently exclusionary
 
 
L. NDA’s U-turns and Credit Claiming
 
78. BJP now proposes a number of policies which it resisted while in opposition: GST, FDI in insurance etc
 
79. Modi takes credit for Katra Railway line built by Congress-led UPA Government
 
 
 
 
M. High Risk, Low Delivery on Economic Promises
 
80. Emphasis on disinvestment can lead to cheap sell off of public assets, given the disinvestment track record of previous NDA government (Ex Disinvestment Secretary Baijal indicted by CBI).
 
81. Over-reliance on privatization and PPP models 
 
82. Economic recovery is a result of UPA’s efforts in first quarter of financial year
 
83. Inflation still runs high: priority area for NDA sees no improvement even after 100 days!
 
84. Retail inflation for industrial workers rises to 7.23 per cent
 
85. BJP denies promised paddy bonus to farmers, betraying farmers and manipulating the issue.
 
86. BJP takes the UPA path again as regards de-regulation of fuel prices
 
87. Food price stabilization fund in budget highly inadequate in both scale and operation 
 
 
N. Policy Confusions and Mishandling
 
88. UPSC examination mishandled, solution on CSAT neither satisfactory nor fair
 
89. Four Year University Programme (FYUP) of Delhi University reversed through undue interference by government in the autonomous University
 
90. University Grants Commission takes cue from government interference in FYUP and meddles with innovative programmes at the Indian Institute of Science and IITs.
 
91. Panicking, Modi Government rolls back Mumbai suburban rail fares with an eye on impending Maharashtra assembly election.
 
92. Confusion on fuel prices as they are alternately cut and increased.
 
93. Government efforts at bringing back black money summed up by BJP MP Nishikant Dubey  as “we will not be able to bring back black money from Switzerland in this lifetime”
 
94. Jaitley caught in Defense-Finance crossfire: Part time Defense Minister, Part time Finance Minister even after 100 days.
 
95. Modi makes false claims of “Khazana Khali Hai”, Chidambaram exposes false claims.
 
96. Mis-governance of the BJP in Delhi with water and power crisis on rise and denial of pension payments.
 
97. “Social media wing” of I&B Ministry tasked with monitoring social media sites like Facebook and Twitter
 
98. Hindi imposition back in BJP Regime? Government backtracks after its circulars face backlash
 
P.  Recent Issues 
 
99 Never in the history of India an Ex SC Judge was appointed as a Governor 
 
100. PM’s speech made compulsory for all students. 
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Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh’s Last Independence Day Speech

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh rai15 अगस्त, 2013 के अवसर पर प्रधान मंत्री का भाषण

 

मेरे प्यारे भारतवासियो,

भाइयो-बहनो और प्यारे बच्चो,

      मैं आप सभी को इस स्वाधीनता दिवस पर बधाई देता हूँ।

      आज यकीनन ही खुशी का दिन है। लेकिन आज़ादी के इस त्यौहार पर हमारे दिलों में इस बात का दर्द भी है कि उत्तराखण्ड के हमारे भाई-बहनों को करीब दो महीने पहले भारी तबाही का सामना करना पड़ा। हमारी संवेदना और सहानुभूति उन सभी परिवारों के साथ है जिनको जान-माल का नुकसान हुआ है। मैं आज उत्तराखण्ड की जनता को यह भरोसा दिलाना चाहता हूं कि इस मुश्किल की घड़ी में सारा देश उनके साथ है। हमारी सरकार जल्द से जल्द लोगों के उजड़े हुए घर दोबारा बसाने और बर्बाद हुए Infrastructure को फिर से बनाने के लिए अपनी पूरी ताकत से काम कर रही है।

      उत्तराखण्ड में कठिन परिस्थितियों में हमारी फौज़, अर्धसैनिक बलों और केन्द्र और राज्य सरकार के तमाम अधिकारियों और कर्मचारियों ने आम लोगों के साथ मिलकर, घिरे हुए लोगों को राहत पहुंचाने का जो काम किया, वह तारीफ के काबिल है। हम ख़ास तौर पर Air Force, ITBP और NDRF के उन अधिकारियों और जवानों को श्रद्धांजलि देते हैं जिन्होंने दूसरों को बचाने में अपनी जान कुर्बान कर दी।

      हमें इस बात का भी बेहद अफसोस है कि कल एक दुर्घटना में हमने अपनी पनडुब्बी INS Sindhurakshak को खो दिया। इस हादसे में 18 बहादुर नौसैनिकों के शहीद होने की आशंका है। यह नुकसान इसलिए और भी दर्दनाक है क्योंकि अभी हाल में हमारी Navy ने अपनी पहली Nuclear पनडुब्बी Arihant और Aircraft Carrier, INS Vikrant के रूप में दो बड़ी कामयाबियां हासिल की थीं।

हम शहीदों को श्रद्धांजलि देते हैं। साथ-साथ Navy की सफलताओं के लिए उन्हें मुबारकबाद भी देते हैं।

भाइयो और बहनो,

      1947 में महात्मा गांधी के नेतृत्व में हमने आज़ादी हासिल की। उसके बाद के अपने सफर पर अगर हम ग़ौर करें तो पाएंगे कि हर दस साल पर हमारे देश में बड़े बदलाव आए हैं।

      1950 के दशक में पंडित जवाहरलाल नेहरू के नेतृत्व में एक लोकतांत्रिक गणराज्य के रूप में भारत ने अपने पहले कदम रखे। देश में Atomic Energy Commission, योजना आयोग और निर्वाचन आयोग जैसी संस्थाओं की स्थापना की गई जिन्होंने आगे चलकर राष्ट्र निर्माण के काम में बहुत बड़ा योगदान दिया। पहली बार आम चुनाव कराए गए और देश के सामाजिक और आर्थिक विकास के लिए पहली पंचवर्षीय योजना बनाने का सिलसिला शुरू किया गया।

      1960 के दशक में पंडित जवाहर लाल नेहरू ने नए-नए उद्योग और कारखाने लगवाए, नई सिंचाई परियोजनाएं शुरू की और नए विश्वविद्यालय खोले। राष्ट्र निर्माण में विज्ञान और Technology के महत्व पर ज़ोर देकर उन्होंने इस प्राचीन देश को एक आधुनिक राष्ट्र के रूप में विकसित करने का काम शुरू किया।

      1970 के दशक में इंदिरा जी ने हमारे राष्ट्र का आत्मविश्वास बढ़ाया। इस दौरान हमने अंतरिक्ष में अपना पहला उपग्रह छोड़ा। हरित क्रांति ने पहली बार हमें अनाज उत्पादन में आत्मनिर्भरता प्रदान की।

      राजीव गांधी जी ने अगले दशक में तकनीकी और आर्थिक आधुनिकीकरण की प्रक्रिया शुरू की। इस दौरान Information Technology के क्षेत्र में हमारी प्रगति की नींव रखी गई। पंचायती राज संस्थाओं के महत्व पर ज़ोर दिया गया जिसकी वजह से आगे चलकर इन संस्थाओं को मज़बूत और अधिकार संपन्न बनाने के लिए हमारे संविधान में संशोधन हुआ।

      साल 1991 में हमने श्री नरसिम्हा राव के नेतृत्व में एक बहुत बड़े आर्थिक संकट का सामना बख़ूबी किया और देश की अर्थव्यवस्था को मज़बूत करने के लिए आर्थिक सुधारों को अपनाया। उस समय इन सुधारों का कई राजनैतिक दलों ने विरोध किया। लेकिन ये सुधार राष्ट्र हित में थे और इसीलिए बाद में आने वाली सभी सरकारों ने उनको जारी रखा। साल 1991 से लेकर आज तक सुधारों की ये प्रक्रिया आगे बढ़ती रही है।

      मेरा मानना है कि पिछला दशक भी हमारे देश के इतिहास में बहुत बड़े बदलावों का दशक रहा है। देश की आर्थिक समृद्धि जितनी इस दशक में बढ़ी है उतनी पहले किसी दशक में नहीं बढ़ी। लोकतांत्रिक ताकतों को बढ़ावा मिला है और समाज के बहुत से वर्ग विकास की प्रक्रिया से पहली बार जुड़े हैं। आम आदमी को नए अधिकार मिले हैं जिनकी बदौलत उसकी सामाजिक और आर्थिक ताकत बढ़ी है।

भाइयो और बहनो,

मई 2004 में पहली UPA सरकार सत्ता में आई थी। तब से लेकर आज तक हमने एक प्रगतिशील और आधुनिक भारत बनाने के लिए लगन और ईमानदारी से काम किया है।

      हमने एक खुशहाल भारत की कल्पना की है। एक ऐसा भारत जो सदियों से चले आ रहे गरीबी, भूख और बीमारी के बोझ से मुक्ति पा चुका हो। जहाँ शिक्षा के उजाले से अज्ञानता और अंधविश्वास के अंधेरे दूर हो चुके हों।

      जहां सामाजिक समानता हो और सबको एक जैसे आर्थिक अवसर प्राप्त हों। जहाँ समाज के किसी भी तबके को अन्याय और शोषण का सामना न करना पड़े।

      हमने एक ऐसे भारत का सपना देखा है जहाँ नौजवानों को रोज़गार के ऐसे अवसर मिलें जिनके जरिए वह राष्ट्र निर्माण के महान काम में योगदान कर सकें।

      हमने अंतरराष्ट्रीय स्तर पर भारत की आवाज़ बुलंद करनी चाही है। हमने एक ऐसे राष्ट्र का निर्माण करना चाहा है जिसे सारी दुनिया आदर और सम्मान के साथ देखे।

      इन सपनों को साकार करने के लिए हमने कई कदम उठाए हैं। लेकिन सफर लंबा है, अभी बहुत फासला और तय करना है।

भाइयो और बहनों,  

अभी कुछ दिन पहले हमने Food Security कानून बनाने की दिशा में Ordinance जारी किया है। Food Security Bill अब संसद के सामने है और हमें उम्मीद है यह जल्द ही पास हो जाएगा। इस कानून का फायदा हमारे गांवों की 75 प्रतिशत और शहरों की आधी आबादी को पहुंचेगा। इसके तहत 81 करोड़ भारतीयों को 3 रुपये प्रति किलो चावल, 2 रुपये प्रति किलो गेहूं और 1 रुपये प्रति किलो मोटा अनाज मिल पाएगा। यह दुनिया भर में इस तरह का सबसे बड़ा प्रयास है।

      हम अपने किसानों की मेहनत की वजह से ही इस कानून को लागू कर पाए हैं। साल 2011-12 में हमारी अनाज पैदावार 25.9 करोड़ टन रही, जो एक रिकार्ड है।

बिना तेज़ कृषि विकास के हम अपने गांवों में खुशहाली पहुंचाने का मक़सद हासिल नहीं कर सकते हैं। पैदावार बढ़ाने और किसानों को उनकी फसल का बेहतर मूल्य दिलवाने के लिए हमने लगातार कोशिश की है। फसलों के खरीद मूल्यों में पिछले 9 सालों में पहले से कहीं ज़्यादा बढ़ोत्तरी की गई है। गेहूं और धान के खरीद मूल्य दुगुने से भी अधिक किए गए हैं। कई ऐसे राज्यों में जहां पहले अनाज की कमी रहती थी आज उनकी अपनी ज़रूरत से ज़्यादा पैदावार हो रही है।

      11 वीं योजना के दौरान कृषि विकास की औसत सालाना दर 3.6 प्रतिशत रही है जो 9वीं और 10वीं योजना, दोनों से ज़्यादा है।

अब ग्रामीण इलाकों में खुशहाली बढ़ने के साफ संकेत दिखाई देने लगे हैं। साल 2004 से लेकर 2011 तक प्रतिव्यक्ति उपभोग किया जा रहा सामान और सुविधाएं पहले के मुकाबले चार गुना तेजी से बढ़े हैं।

      ग्रामीण मजदूरी दर में भी कहीं अधिक तेजी से वृद्धि हुई है। मनरेगा की बदौलत ग्रामीण क्षेत्रों में करोड़ों गरीब लोगों को रोज़गार मिल रहा है।

      गरीबी को नापना एक मुश्किल काम है। गरीबी की परिभाषा को लेकर लोगों के अलग-अलग मत हैं। लेकिन हम गरीबी की चाहे कोई भी परिभाषा अपनाएं, इस बात से इनकार नहीं किया जा सकता कि 2004 के बाद गरीबी कम होने की गति तेज़ हुई है।

      कई ऐसे राज्य, जो बहुत समय से पिछड़े माने जाते थे और जिनमें से कुछ को “बीमारू” कहा जाता था, आज तेज़ी से विकास कर रहे हैं।

      भारत में हर बच्चे को शिक्षा के अवसर देने के लिए हमने शिक्षा का अधिकार कानून बनाया है। आज देश में लगभग सभी बच्चे प्राथमिक स्कूलों में पढ़ रहे हैं।

      कॉलेज जाने वाले छात्र-छात्राओं की संख्या पिछले नौ सालों में दोगुनी से भी ज़्यादा हो गई है।

      गरीबों और कमजोर तबकों के बच्चों को शिक्षा के अवसरों का फायदा दिलाने के लिए हमने बड़े पैमाने पर वज़ीफों के कार्यक्रम शुरू किए हैं। आज देश भर में 2 करोड़ से ज़्यादा बच्चों को केन्द्र सरकार द्वारा वज़ीफे दिए जा रहे हैं।

      उच्च शिक्षा के क्षेत्र में कई नए संस्थान खोले गए हैं। जैसे 8 नए IIT, 7 नए IIM, 16 नई Central Universities और 10 नए NIT । Scientific Research को बढ़ावा देने के लिए भी नई संस्थाएं खोली गई हैं। Science की पढ़ाई में ज़्यादा छात्रों को शामिल करने के लिए और विदेशों से भारतीय Scientists की वापसी आसान करने के लिए कदम उठाए गए हैं।

      लेकिन शिक्षा प्रणाली में सुधार लाने के लिए अभी बहुत कुछ करना बाकी है। बहुत सारे स्कूलों में अभी भी पीने का साफ पानी, शौचालय और अन्य सुविधाएं उपलब्ध नहीं है। शिक्षा की Quality को बेहतर बनाने की ज़रूरत है। इसके लिए अध्यापकों की training पर ज़्यादा जोर दिया जाना आवश्यक है।  

      Mid-day-Meal योजना में रोज करीब 11 करोड़ बच्चों को स्कूलों में दोपहर का खाना दिया जा रहा है। यह योजना बच्चों की पढ़ाई और पोषण दोनों के लिए बहुत फायदेमंद है। लेकिन इसको बेहतर तरह से लागू करना भी बहुत ज़रूरी है। बिहार में पिछले दिनों जो दर्दनाक हादसा हुआ वह देश में कहीं भी दोबारा नहीं होना चाहिए।

      2005 में हमने राष्ट्रीय ग्रामीण स्वास्थ्य मिशन की शुरूआत की थी। इस मिशन के अच्छे परिणाम सामने आने लगे हैं। देश में Maternal Mortality Rate और Infant Mortality Rate दोनों तेज़ी से घटे हैं। पहले से कहीं अधिक बच्चों का जन्म आज अस्पताल में होता है। टीकाकरण के प्रतिशत में भी काफी वृद्धि हुई है।

      पिछले दो सालों से हमारे देश में पोलियो का कोई भी केस सामने नहीं आया है। हमें एक ऐसे रोग को मिटाने में कामयाबी मिली है जो लाखों लोगों को अपंग बना दिया करता था।

      हमारे ग़रीब भाई-बहनों को अस्पतालों में इलाज के लिए मुफ्त बीमा सुविधा प्रदान कराने वाली राष्ट्रीय स्वास्थ्य बीमा योजना अब साढ़े तीन करोड़ परिवारों को फायदा पहुंचा रही है।

      हमने शहरी क्षेत्रों में भी Health Mission लागू किया है जिससे इन क्षेत्रों में स्वास्थ्य सेवाओं का विस्तार होगा और उनमें सुधार आएगा।

      महिलाओं की सुरक्षा को बेहतर करने के लिए, हमने महिलाओं के विरुद्ध अपराधों से संबंधित कानून को मज़बूत बनाया है।   

      Infrastructure यानि सड़कों, Railways, बिजली उत्पादन, Civil Aviation, बंदरगाहों और Telecom जैसे क्षेत्रों में भी पिछले 9 सालों में काफी तरक्की हुई है। गांवों को जोड़ने वाली प्रधान मंत्री ग्राम सड़क योजना के तहत 2 लाख किलोमीटर नई सड़कें बनाई गई हैं। सैंतीस हजार Kilometer से ज़्यादा नए Highway बनाए गए हैं जिनसे व्यापार और यात्रा अब ज़्यादा आसान हो गए हैं। चालीस से ज़्यादा हवाई अड्डों का निर्माण या नवीनीकरण किया गया है। सन् 2004 में सिर्फ 7 प्रतिशत लागों के पास telephone connection थे। आज 73 प्रतिशत लोगों को यह सुविधा प्राप्त है।  ग्रामीण इलाकों में यह प्रतिशत 2 से बढ़कर 40 हो गया है। बिजली उत्पादन में रिकार्ड बढ़ोत्तरी हुई है।

भाइयो और बहनो,

      हाल के महीनों में भारत की अर्थव्यवस्था के बारे में यह बात चर्चा में रही है कि पिछले साल हमारी विकास दर कम होकर 5% रह गई है।  यह बात सच है और हम इस हालत में सुधार लाने की पूरी कोशिश कर रहे हैं। लेकिन सिर्फ हमारा देश ही अकेला आर्थिक कठिनाईयों का सामना नहीं कर रहा है। पूरी विश्व अर्थव्यवस्था के लिए पिछला साल मुश्किल भरा रहा है। यूरोप के बड़े देशों में इस वक्त मंदी चल रही है। दुनिया भर में हर जगह निर्यात बाज़ारों की स्थिति में गिरावट आई है। सभी विकासशील देशों को मंदी का सामना करना पड़ा है।

      मेरा मानना है कि भारत में धीमे विकास का दौर बहुत दिन नहीं चलेगा। पिछले 9 सालों में हमारी अर्थव्यवस्था में औसतन 7.9 प्रतिशत सालाना की बढ़ोत्तरी हुई है। विकास की यह रफ्तार अब तक किसी भी दशक में हुई प्रगति से काफी ज्यादा है।

भाइयो और बहनो,

      आज दुनिया के देश एक दूसरे से जितना जुड़े हुए हैं उतना पहले कभी नहीं रहे। हमने अपनी विदेश नीति के जरिए यह कोशिश की है कि भारत को इस बात का पूरा फायदा मिले।  दुनिया की बड़ी ताकतों से पिछले 9 सालों में हमारे संबंध लगातार सुधरे हैं। पूर्व और दक्षिण पूर्व Asia में स्थित दस ASEAN राष्ट्रों के साथ हमारी Look East Policy के अच्छे नतीजे सामने आए हैं, खासकर आर्थिक मामलों में। हमारी यह भी कोशिश रही है कि पड़ोसी देशों के साथ हमारी दोस्ती बढ़े। लेकिन पाकिस्तान के साथ रिश्ते बेहतर होने के लिए यह ज़रूरी है कि वह अपनी सरज़मीन और अपने नियंत्रण वाली ज़मीन का इस्तेमाल भारत के खिलाफ किसी भी कार्रवाई के लिए न होने दे।

      राष्ट्रीय सुरक्षा के क्षेत्र में भी स्थिति में सुधार हुआ है। 2012 में और इस साल कुछ राज्यों में सांप्रदायिक हिंसा की चिंताजनक घटनाओं के बावजूद, पिछले 9 साल सांप्रदायिक सद्भाव की दृष्टि से अच्छे गुजरे हैं। आतंकवादी और नक्सली हिंसा में भी कमी आई है। लेकिन राष्ट्रीय सुरक्षा के संबंध में हमें लगातार सावधानी बरतने की ज़रूरत है। समय-समय पर हो रहे नक्सली हमलों को पूरी तरह रोकने में हम सफल नहीं हो पाए हैं। छत्तीसगढ़ में पिछली 25 मई को जो नक्सली हिंसा हुई वह भारत के लोकतंत्र पर एक सीधा हमला था। भारत और पाकिस्तान के बीच नियंत्रण रेखा पर हाल में हमारे जवानों पर कायरतापूर्ण हमला किया गया। इस तरह की घटनाओं को रोकने के लिए हम हर मुमकिन कोशिश करेंगे।

भाइयो और बहनो,

      सरकार के काम को ज़्यादा संवेदनशील, पारदर्शी, और ईमानदार बनाने के लिए हमने कई महत्वपूर्ण कदम उठाए हैं। इनमें से सिर्फ दो का ज़िक्र मैं यहां करना चाहूंगा।

      RTI कानून के जरिए आम आदमी को अब सरकारी कामकाज के बारे में पहले से कहीं ज़्यादा जानकारी मिल रही है। इस कानून का इस्तेमाल एक बड़े पैमाने पर, हर स्तर पर हो रहा है। यह कानून अक्सर गड़बड़ी और भ्रष्टाचार को सामने लाता है और सुधार का रास्ता खोलता है। मुझे यकीन है कि आने वाले समय में RTI की वजह से सरकारी कामकाज में और सुधार आएगा ।  

      हमने संसद में लोकपाल बिल प्रस्तुत किया है। लोक सभा ने इसे pass कर दिया है और अब इस पर राज्य सभा विचार कर रही है। यह कानून हमारी राजनैतिक व्यवस्था को साफ-सुथरा बनाने की दिशा में एक बड़ा कदम होगा।

भाइयो और बहनो,

      हमने पिछले दशक में एक लंबा सफर तय किया है। लेकिन अभी बहुत कुछ करना बाकी है। बदलाव का जो सिलसिला हमने शुरू किया है उसे आने वाले वक्त में जारी रखा जाएगा।

      जैसा मैंने पहले भी कहा है, तेज़ आर्थिक विकास हमारे देश के लिए बेहद ज़रूरी है। गरीबी दूर करना, अच्छी शिक्षा और स्वास्थ्य सेवाएं उपलब्ध कराना और रोज़गार के नए अवसर पैदा करना – यह सब तेज़ आर्थिक विकास के बगैर मुमकिन नहीं है। पिछले 9 साल में हमने आर्थिक विकास की जो औसत रफ्तार हासिल की है उससे हमारे देश की क्षमताओं का पता चलता है। लेकिन इस वक्त देश के आर्थिक विकास की दर में कमी आई है। हम इस कमी को दूर करने के लिए पूरी मेहनत से काम कर रहे हैं।

      उद्योगों के लिए सरकारी मंज़ूरियों की प्रक्रिया को तेज़ करने, देश में उद्योग और व्यापार के लिए बेहतर माहौल बनाने और निवेश को बढ़ाने के लिए हमने हाल ही में कई कदम उठाए हैं। बड़ी परियोजनाओं को मंजूरियों की प्रक्रिया में मदद करने के लिए एक विशेष cell की स्थापना की गई है। Cabinet Committee on Investment रुकी हुई परियोजनाओं की अड़चनें दूर करने का काम कर रही है।

      बिजली उत्पादन बढ़ाने के रास्ते में कोयले की आपूर्ति एक समस्या बन गई थी। इसको हमने काफी हद तक सुलझा लिया है।

      आने वाले महीनों में Infrastructure के क्षेत्र में बहुत सी बड़ी परियोजनाओं पर हम काम शुरू करने वाले हैं। इनमें 2 नए बंदरगाह, 8 नए हवाईअड्डे, नए Industrial Corridors और रेल परियोजनाएं शामिल हैं।

      Foreign Direct Investment को बढ़ावा देने के लिए हाल ही में हमने कई क्षेत्रों में ऐसे निवेश की सीमा बढ़ाई है और उसकी प्रक्रिया को आसान बनाया है।

      निवेश बढ़ाने की इन कोशिशों के अच्छे नतीजे हमें अगले कुछ महीनों में साफ देखने को मिलेंगे। इससे आर्थिक विकास की रफ्तार तेज़ होगी, रोज़गार के अवसर बढ़ेंगे और infrastructure में भी सुधार आएगा।

भाइयो और बहनो,

      Food Security कानून बनने के बाद उसे प्रभावी ढंग से लागू करना हमारी प्राथमिकताओं में से एक रहेगी। इस दिशा में हमने राज्यों के साथ मिलकर काम करना शुरू कर दिया है। Public Distribution System के Computerization के काम में तेज़ी लाई जाएगी।

      Mid-day-Meal Scheme में सुधार लाए जाएंगे। बच्चों को स्कूल में मिल रहा भौजन पौष्टिक होने के साथ-साथ साफ सुथरे ढंग से बना हुआ होना चाहिए। यह सुनिश्चित करने के लिए हम ठोस कदम उठाएंगे।

      Skill Development के क्षेत्र में शुरुआत में हम उतनी अच्छी प्रगति नहीं कर पाए जितनी चाहते थे, लेकिन अब इसमें तेज़ी आई है। हमने कुछ महीने पहले National Skill Development Authority का गठन किया है। हम जल्द ही एक नई योजना शुरू करेंगे जिसके तहत उन नौजवानों को लगभग 10 हज़ार रुपये की राशि दी जाएगी, जिन्होंने सफलतापूर्वक नई Skills हासिल की हैं। इस योजना से अगले 12 महीने में करीब 10 लाख नौजवानों को फायदा पहुंचेगा।

अल्पसंख्यकों के लिए बनाए गए Multi-Sectoral Development Programme में हाल ही में सुधार लाए गए हैं। अब इसे प्रभावी ढंग से लागू किया जाएगा।

      Minor Forest Produce के लिए खरीद मूल्य निर्धारित करने की स्कीम को मंजूरी दे दी गई है। इससे हमारे आदिवासी भाई-बहनों को लघु वन उपज के सही दाम मिलेंगे। इस योजना को हम जल्द-से-जल्द लागू करेंगे।

      आदिवासी भाई-बहनों की सामाजिक और आर्थिक स्थिति और उनके स्वास्थ्य और शिक्षा के स्तर के बारे में सही जानकारी हासिल करने के लिए एक उच्च स्तरीय समिति गठित की गई है। समिति की Report से हमें उनके लिए बेहतर योजनाएं बनाने में मदद मिलेगी।

      हम अपने देश में बहुत सी समस्याओं को बेहतर Technology के ज़रिए हल कर सकते हैं। इसकी एक मिसाल है आधार योजना। इस योजना के तहत इस साल के आख़िर तक पचास करोड़ लोगों को अपनी पहचान साबित करने का जरिया मिलेगा और रोज़मर्रा की ज़िंदगी में उनको सहूलियत पहुंचेगी। इसके ज़रिए हम करोड़ों लोगों को पहली बार बैंकों की सुविधाओं का लाभ दे पाएंगे।

भाइयो और बहनो,

      एक आधुनिक, प्रगतिशील और Secular देश में तंग और सांप्रदायिक ख्यालों की कोई गुंजाइश नहीं हो सकती। ऐसी सोच हमारे समाज को बांटती है और हमारे लोकतंत्र को कमज़ोर करती है। हमें इसे रोकना होगा। हमें अपनी संस्कृति की उन परंपराओं को मज़बूत करना होगा, जो हमें अन्य विचारधाराओं के प्रति सहनशील होना और उनका सम्मान करना सिखाती हैं। मैं आज सभी राजनैतिक दलों, समाज के सभी वर्गों और आम जनता से इस दिशा में प्रयास करने की अपील करना चाहूंगा।

भाइयो और बहनो,

      कुछ देर पहले मैंने कहा था कि आज़ादी के बाद के हर दशक में भारत में बड़े परिवर्तन हुए हैं। हमें आज यह सोचना है कि आने वाले दस सालों में हम किस तरह का परिवर्तन चाहते हैं।

      पिछले दस सालों में जैसी प्रगति हमने की है यदि हम उसे आगे भी जारी रखें तो वह वक्त दूर नहीं जब भारत को ग़रीबी, भूख, बीमारी और अशिक्षा से मुक्ति मिल जाएगी। हमारा भारत खुशहाल होगा और उसकी खुशहाली में सभी नागरिक बराबर के शरीक होंगे चाहे उनका धर्म, जाति, क्षेत्र, भाषा कुछ भी हो।

      इसके लिए हम सबको मिलकर देश में राजनैतिक स्थिरता, सामाजिक एकता और सुरक्षा का माहौल भी बनाना होगा।    

      आइए, हम सब मिलकर एक ऐसा भारत बनाने के लिए अपने आपको फिर से समर्पित करें।

      प्यारे बच्चों, मेरे साथ मिलकर तीन बार बोलिए…

जय हिन्द – जय हिन्द – जय हिन्द ।

***

Dr Manmohan’s speech as a PM, after 30 days of government

This is the first month speech By Dr Mamohan Singh when he became PMB_Id_66013_manmohan_singh

My Fellow Citizens,

I speak to you with a deep sense of humility, fully conscious of the sacred responsibility entrusted to me. You have assigned the task of governance of our country to the United Progressive Alliance and its supporting parties. You have delivered your verdict and the verdict is clear. You have sought a change in the manner in which this country is run, a change in national priorities, and a change in the processes and focus of governance. You have, through your mandate, made it clear that economic growth has to be accompanied by equity and social justice. You have expressed concern for the poor and disadvantaged sections of our society and for minorities and backward regions to be at the heart of all policies of the government.

As I share with you the priorities of our government, I am reminded of the Father of our Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhiji had said that his mission in life was “to wipe every tear from every eye.” Think of the poorest person you have ever seen, Gandhiji would say, “and ask if your next act will be of any use to him.” That message of Bapu resonates in our ears as we settle down to the business of government.

The National Common Minimum Programme has been prepared by us keeping in mind the priorities brought into focus by your mandate. The Address of the President of India to Parliament outlines a comprehensive agenda for the nation to which our government is committed. The country would have benefited if Parliament had been allowed to discuss the President’s Address. I was eagerly looking forward to contributions from all parties in this discussion. Unfortunately, this was not allowed to happen. It should be a matter of deep concern for all of us when established mechanisms for a constructive dialogue and critique, which are vital for a parliamentary democracy, are disrupted and not allowed to operate.

Parliament is a forum which is sacred and it must be our collective endeavour to ensure that we maximize its effectiveness. I request parties across the entire political spectrum to respect Parliament as an essential forum for public debate so that we can move forward on the task of nation building which is a common goal for one and all.

We can justly take pride in the fact that since Independence we have been able, with our efforts, to build the foundations of a modern economy and record an acceleration in the rate of economic growth. There have been impressive gains in terms of the educational and health status of the nation. However, the benefits of this performance have not touched all our citizens in equal measure. Growth is not an end in itself. It is a means to generate employment, banish poverty, hunger and homelessness and improve the standard of living of the mass of our people. It must also be environmentally sustainable.

Equity and efficiency are complimentary, not contradictory, and we must move forward on both these while maintaining a high degree of fiscal and financial discipline, and a robust external economic profile.

To be able to devote our attention and energy to economic development that improves the lives of our people, we must ensure social and political stability, communal harmony and respect for the rule of law. We must put in place policies and programmes which empower all our citizens to lead a life of dignity and self-respect. Our government is committed to the security and welfare of all minorities, the protection of the interests of the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes, of backward classes and all weaker sections. Equally we are committed to the empowerment of women. We will ensure equal participation of all in the processes of governance.

The essence of the National Common Minimum Programme is the recognition that policies that are aimed at promoting economic growth must also advance the cause of distributive justice and create new employment opportunities. Economic reform is not only about freeing private enterprise from the shackles of bureaucratic control. It is also about making the government more effective, efficient and people friendly so that it can handle better the many tasks that only Governments can perform. And, it is also about ensuring fair and transparent regulation of the market where this is necessary. While many in our country are benefiting from their integration into the market and the global economy, millions of our citizens are still plagued by illiteracy, disease, want, hunger and malnutrition. Gender disparities are high and educational, nutritional and health levels of women are much lower than of men. Chronic poverty afflicts millions who lack income and food security. This is particularly acute among the scheduled castes, other backward castes and scheduled tribes. At a regional level, too, the disparities are high and while some regions of the country seem to be on an accelerating growth path, there is a concern that other regions are not only lagging but are also falling behind. Regretably, minorities suffer from not only economic insecurity but also a sense of marginalization from political and governance processes.

As a nation, we cannot accept such disparities. We have been given a mandate which enjoins us to be sensitive to the concerns of these deprived sections and regions. We have an obligation to ensure that they too benefit from growth in full measure. Our commitment to investments in the social sectors is rooted in this reality. It is the responsibility of government, at all levels, at the Centre, in the States and at the level of the community, to address each of these economic and social challenges. However, I am convinced that the government, at every level, is today not adequately equipped and attuned to deal with this challenge and meet the aspirations of the people. To be able to do so, we require the reform of government and of public institutions. Much of the focus of economic reforms in the past decade has been on reducing the role of the government in controlling the Private Sector; controls that hampered entrepreneurial dynamism and often bred corruption. This was necessary. Yet, there are many areas, critical areas, that directly affect the quality of life of every citizen, where the government has a role, and is expected by every citizen to have a role. These include the provision of social and physical infrastructure for development, the provision of elementary education and public health, providing drinking water and sanitation. They also include economic infrastructure which in our country in large part must be provided by the Government such as irrigation, power, roads and railways. Our people expect the government to be pro-active and sensitive to their needs. In each of these areas, at every level of governance, the reform of government is today an urgent task before us.

We will pursue economic reform and widen the space for individual initiative and enterprise, but even as we do so, we cannot forsake the obligation of running a government that works, and works for the people. The reform of administration and of public institutions to improve efficiency and the quality of delivery services will be our immediate priority.

There has been a neglect of the interests of the farmers in recent years and this is reflected in a significant slowing down in agricultural growth in the past five years. Farmers in many parts of the country have faced distress and there has been no helping hand. The National Common Minimum Programme of the United Progressive Alliance is committed to giving a “New Deal” to rural India. Agriculture must receive the priority attention it deserves. Public and private investment in agriculture has to be greatly increased. A key concern in recent years has been the lack of access to credit. Our government is already addressing this issue directly by pursuing policies that improve the farmer’s access to affordable credit. Agricultural research, training and extension also require much greater attention. I would like to see the emergence of new centers of excellence in agriculture as we have in technology and management. There has to be a sharper focus on expanding opportunities for gainful employment in agriculture and in off-farm rural activities. Food for work programme, efficiently implemented, can greatly assist in achieving this objective.

The Indian farmer has also suffered from too many controls and restrictions. There are still far too many internal barriers to trade that must go. We must also re-examine those aspects of our policies that prevent a creative interaction between farmers and agro- industries. I would like to see the creation of a “Single Market” across the country for both manufactured and agricultural produce with encouragement of agro-industry linkages. With the introduction of value-added taxation this integration of the Indian market will be further enabled.

A striking feature of development in our country has been the rapid increase in urbanization. There are now more than 30 cities with a population of more than one million. The rapid and unplanned growth of these cities has contributed to increased urban pollution, crime and absence of the required infrastructure like access to drinking water, sanitation, roads, footpaths for pedestrians and public spaces, parks and greenery is making life in urban India a living hell for many. Most of the responsibility for this rests with States and Municipal Governments. It will be our effort to give special attention to policies that can encourage urban development and urban renewal. We will actively seek public-private partnership in building urban infrastructure in a planned manner.

Higher rates of economic growth, urbanization and the modernization of agriculture will continue to increase the demand for energy. This demand can only be met with new investment, increased efficiency and rational pricing. Even as we plan to make more efficient use of conventional sources of energy, we must invest in the development of non-conventional sources. We will evolve an Energy Policy package that will cover all sources of energy and will address all aspects like energy security, access and availability, affordability and pricing, efficiency and environment.

Water has emerged as a critical and contentious issue across the country. Even access to safe drinking water remains a problem in many parts of our country. Water management policies have to be so formulated as to address the needs of farmers and weaker sections, especially women, as well as those of city-dwellers. We will have to find innovative, cost-effective and community based solutions. Groundwater replenishment and management and rainwater harvesting require close cooperation between government, panchayati raj institutions and non-governmental organizations. The government will reverse the neglect of public investment in irrigation, addressing the specific problems of each river basin, in an environment and people friendly manner.

We need new thinking in health policy. While the government will continue to help in the growth of private and community based health and medical care, there is a crying need for the reform of public health and public hospitals. We will make public hospitals more efficient and accessible, through public-private partnership aimed at offering affordable and humane health care. We need community based and public health oriented solutions to tackling communicable diseases, epidemics, especially HIV/AIDS, and disability management and population stabilisation.

People are a nation’s greatest resource. Our greatest asset will be an educated and capable work force. Our government will work along with State governments to step up public spending on education, to universalize access to elementary education and to improve the quality of our education. We shall make effective use of mid-day meals programme for school children to achieve this objective. I am particularly concerned about the access to schooling and higher education of children belonging to scheduled castes and scheduled tribes, weaker sections and minorities.

The education of the girl child and female literacy will be priority areas for us. We will do our utmost to provide scholarships to help them acquire the training and skills that can make them self-reliant and proud citizens. Our children need modern and relevant education aimed at making them concerned, capable and caring citizens of the Republic.

Our economy has been rapidly integrating with the global economy over the past decade, with a growing sense of self-confidence. However, domestic enterprise needs world class and cost-effective infrastructure. Better roads, better connectivity, modern airports and railways, efficient ports and affordable and reliable power are all the basic requirements for a competitive economy. For centuries India has been a trading nation, actively engaged in the movement of goods and people across continents and high seas. We will pursue policies that enable our economy to be better integrated with the world economy without hurting the interests of our people. We will create an environment conducive to the utilization of the talent pool of the vast and diverse Indian diaspora. We greatly value their participation in the development of our nation.

No objective in this development agenda can be met if we do not reform the instrument in our hand with which we have to work, namely the government and public institutions. Clearly, this will be my main concern and challenge in the days to come.

We will maintain our tradition of an independent foreign policy, built on a national consensus and based on our supreme national interests. We will expand our network of international relationships – preserving solidarity with traditional allies and strengthening new partnerships. We will work with like-minded nations for an equitable, multi-polar world order, which takes into account the legitimate aspirations of developing countries.

We desire to live in a neighbourhood of peace and prosperity. We will actively pursue the composite dialogue with Pakistan. We are sincere about discussing and resolving all issues, including Jammu & Kashmir. We recognize that resolution of major issues requires national consensus and accommodation of public sentiment in both countries. It is self-evident that terrorism and violence would cast a dark shadow over this process. With our other South Asian neighbours, it will be our sincere effort to jointly realize the vast potential for cooperation, and to ensure mutual security, stability and development.

In our relations with China, we are encouraged by positive developments, which we are committed to strengthening. Bilateral economic cooperation has shown remarkable growth and diversification. We shall carry forward the process of discussion to resolve the boundary question from the political perspective of our bilateral relations.

As two of the world’s great democracies, our strengthened relationship with USA is a fact of considerable importance. The transformation of our relations with USA has been supported by the expansion of economic links and people to people ties, including the presence of almost a million people of Indian origin in that country. We will welcome the expansion of cooperation between the two Governments to include new and mutually beneficial areas, particularly high technology.

The strength and vibrancy of our partnership with Russia has withstood the flux of the post-Cold War world. We will accelerate the diversification of our relationship, particularly in defence, high technology, space and nuclear energy, while intensifying economic cooperation.

We have traditionally strong relations with the countries of Southeast and West Asia, based on cultural affinities, economic interaction and a vibrant Indian expatriate community. We aim to build upon these. While speaking of West Asia, I must share our deep concern about developments in Iraq and the suffering of the people of that country. It is our earnest hope that democracy would be restored and full sovereignty transferred to a truly representative Government of Iraq. India is committed to participate in all endeavours aimed at bringing stability and to ensure the well-being of the Iraqi people.

We will also strengthen our bilateral relations with developing countries of Latin America and Africa. Similarly, strong ties with the nations of Central Asia are of importance for our international trade, as well as for our strategic and energy security.

We will actively pursue a cooperative relationship with the European Union to expand the political and economic frontiers of collaboration. We welcome the inclusion of many new member states, with whom we have a long tradition of cooperation.

I wish to place on record the nation’s deep sense of gratitude and pride in the gallantry, valour, professionalism and the spirit of self-sacrifice of our armed forces. I assure the nation that we will not be found wanting in providing for our armed forces, or in caring for our ex-servicemen. We will streamline defence acquisition procedures, so that our forces obtain modern weapon systems and technologies. Our government will ensure that the necessary funds are made available for these purposes.

We will maintain a credible minimum nuclear deterrent, along with a policy of ‘no first use’ in our nuclear doctrine. India is a responsible nuclear power, and we will continue to work to prevent proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. At the same time, we remain committed to the goal of universal nuclear disarmament.

Internal security remains an important challenge. Terrorism poses a grave threat to the unity and progress of our nation. We shall combat it with all the resources at our command. There shall be no doubt whatsoever about our resolve to deal with this insidious threat to our nation.

The government will continue the process of dialogue with the Hurriyat and all other groups in Jammu and Kashmir. The Government is willing to talk with all disaffected groups provided they shun the path of violence.

We will adopt a comprehensive approach to the problem of national security, to create greater synergy between our intelligence agencies, closer coordination between internal security structures, more efficient civil-military interface and more effective harnessing of technology to national security management.

My fellow citizens, I share the feeling of well-meaning citizens when they express pained concern about the decline of morals and ethics in public life. There is, however, no better way to deal with this incipient threat to our democracy than to meet it head on by joining public life ourselves.

When I chose to enter public life I did so because I was convinced that our democracy needs more professionals to become more engaged and active in politics.

I, therefore, now appeal to each one of you to also participate in our public life so that governments at all levels – central, state and local – are all constantly put on notice and not just tested once in five years.

When I travel across the country I am always heartened by the increasing number of young and idealistic people I meet who work with voluntary organizations, empowering the dispossessed and the dis-enfranchised. We shall make effective use of the resources of the civil society to improve the quality of governance and delivery of important public services.

Fellow citizens, I urge you to come forward and take an active role in the nation’s public affairs. Each one of you can make a difference. I seek your support to restore to our public life a greater sense of purpose and a renewed commitment to decency, morality and the hard work needed to take our country and every one of our citizens forward. We must re-capture the spirit of idealism and self-sacrifice which characterized the high noon of our freedom struggle. Working together, we shall ensure that this ancient sacred land of ours regains its rightful place in the comity of nations.

JAI HIND!

Dr Manmohan Singh – Architect of Growth and Social Inclusion

By- Rachit Seth 

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A decade of growth and rights based social revolution- This is what the Dr Manmohan Singh era represents for me

The post liberalization era India has witnessed unprecedented growth. Dr Manmohan Singh, the then Finance Minister is credited for initiating and scripting India’s growth story since 1991. On 24th July 1991, India’s finance minister Dr Manmohan Singh wound up his historic Union budget speech with Victor Hugo’s famous words “No power on earth can stop an idea whose time has come. I suggest to this august House that the emergence of India as a major economic power in the world happens to be one such idea.” This was his idea of India.

 

In the 10 years of UPA – the Prime Minister Dr Singh has lived up to his words. India is on the verge of becoming a super power in the world. It has become the third largest economy in the world. It is important to note that India was on 10th position in 2005, when Dr Singh took over.

The efforts of our humble ,soft spoken and hardworking economist Prime Minister has helped India become an economic power house

He has assured India’s place at the high table of the G 20 economies of the world.

 

Under the Congress-led UPA government’s stewardship over the last 10 years, India has not only become a nearly two trillion-dollar economy, achieving the fastest pace of growth in our history, we have also seen the benefits of growth percolate deeper to the Aam Aadmi.

 

The period when the UPA government has been in power has seen the highest growth rate in our history as India grew at an average rate of 8.2% between 2004-05 and 2011-12. In the last 10 years, India grew at an average of  7.7% Even as the world went through economic downturns due to the financial crisis of 2007-08, India continued to grow, thrive and prosper under the wise leadership of Dr Manmohan Singh, widely recognised as one of the world’s foremost economists.

 

Our macroeconomic fundamentals remained strong despite global economic crises of 2008-09. When most developed nations faced recession, India is was growing at more than 8% Under the NDA government the Indian economy grew from USD 416 billion in 1998 to USD 600 billion in 2004 (a jump of 44%), and claimed that India was “shining”. In nine years of UPA rule, the country has moved from USD 617.6 Billion to USD 1.84 Trillion, up by three times. It is clear that if there has been a growth take-off in India, it has been under the UPA government. (Source:  http://bit.ly/k4xE1y)

 

At constant prices (2004-05 levels), which would help us look at the size of the economy discounting the impact of inflation, the Indian growth story looks even more amazing. The total GDP of the country stood at Rs 27,77,813 crore in 2003-2004, up 33% from the 1998-99 figures of Rs 20,87,828 crore and the NDA went into the 2004 Lok Sabha elections with ‘India Shining.’

 

If we read Dr Manmohan Singh’s budget speech of 1991-92 again and quote.

He said “In highlighting the significance of reform, my purpose is not to give a fillip to mindless and heartless consumerism we have borrowed from the affluent societies of the West. My objection to the consumerist phenomenon is two-fold. First, we cannot afford it. In a society where we lack drinking water, education, health, shelter and other basic necessities, it would be tragic if our productive resources were to be devoted largely to the satisfaction of the needs of a small minority”

 

The UPA Government under his leadership has kept these words in mind. UPA has introduced a series of Right based laws which legally guarantee – Right to Work (NREGA), Right to Information (RTI), Right to Tribals (Forest Rights Act), Right to Education and now Right to Food. These inclusive measures have ensured that the wealth created by the growth figures reach the last man in the queue- The Aam Aadmi.

India’s social indicators have improved. Immunization programmes on Polio have been successful. Health infrastructure has improved with the help of 108 Ambulances services in each state.

During UPA, lakhs of km of Rural roads under PMGSY have been built. UPA has built 3 times more National Highways than the previous government.

One important aspect which is often being missed, while taking in record Dr Singh’s government, is the fight against corruption and stress on institutional reforms to curb corruption. Critics have been harsh on it. The biggest step is the AADHAAR- cash transfer-using e-governance to stop leakages. Just yesterday, the President of India gave assent to Whistleblowers Protection Act. There have been several other acts and bills which have been initiated in his term.

  • UPA is the Only Government in Modern India to pass the Historic Right to Information Act, 2005 to usher in transparency in governance through citizen participation.
  • RTI Act has empowered lakhs of individuals and have made the state responsible
  • The Lokpal and the Lokayukta Bill has been passed by the Parliament.
  • Aadhaar- Direct Benefits Transfer- Institutional architecture to facilitate a shift to a system in which benefits from the government would get transferred directly to the bank accounts of individual beneficiaries of various social sector schemes.
  • India ratified the United Nations Convention Against Corruption in May, 2011.
  • The Public Procurement Bill, 2012 already introduced in Parliament
  • Grievances Redressal Bill already introduced in Parliament
  • Foreign Bribery Bill already introduced in Parliament
  • Judicial Accountability Bill already introduced in Parliament
  • The Whistle Blowers Protection Act passed by the Parliament
  • The Consumer Protection (Amendment) Bill, 2011 already introduced in Parliament
  • The Prevention of Money Laundering (Amendment) Act passed by UPA
  • The Electronic Delivery of Services Bill already introduced in Parliament
  • Benami Transaction (Prohibition) Bill 2011 introduced in Parliament. The Bill elaborately covers definition of ‘benami’ property and transaction, and prohibits benami transactions.
  • UPA is the only Government to present a White Paper on Black Money

 

It is no joke that UPA is building one of the biggest Infrastructure project in the world- The Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor,Amritsar- Kolkata Industrial Corridor and the Chennai-Bengaluru Industrial Corridor. These would be the corridors of growth and would be our manufacturing spines of future, giving millions of jobs. That is the vision of our Dr Manmohan Singh, the man of impeccable integrity, a man who would be rightly judged by the history- as a man who took India forward.

 

Rachit Seth is an Architect working in Delhi, Follow him on Twitter at @rachitseth 

 

 

Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru’s Letter to Chief Ministers on RSS

Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru’s Letter to Chief Ministers on December 7, 1947 where he explains the phenomenan called Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) 

New Delhi

7 December, 1947

India'S Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru

 

My dear Prime Minister, * (Chief Ministers)

          Reports have reached me of big demonstrations organized by the R.S.S. in some provinces.  Often these demonstrations have been held in spite of prohibitory orders like Section 144.  Some provincial authorities have taken no action in this matter and apparently accepted this defiance of orders.  I do not wish to interfere with your discretion in this matter.  But I would like to draw your attention to the fact that this acquiescence in defiance is likely to have grave consequences.

2.       We have a great deal of evidence to show that the R.S.S. is an organization which is in the nature of a private army and which is definitely proceeding on the strictest Nazi lines, even following the technique of organisation.  It is not our desire to interfere with civil liberties.  But training in arms of large numbers of persons with the obvious intention of using them is not something that can be encouraged.  The fact that the R.S.S. is definitely and deliberately against the present central and provincial governments need not be considered enough for any action to be taken against them and any legitimate propaganda might certainly be allowed.  But their activity more and more goes beyond these limits and it is desirable for provincial governments to keep a watchful eye and to take such actions as they may deem necessary.

3.       Some provincial governments have taken against periodicals for promoting hatred between communities.  Probably the newspapers of the R.S.S. are more to blame in this matter than any other newspapers or periodicals outside Pakistan.  It is amazing how they carry on this communal propaganda in its extremist form.

4.       I have some knowledge of the way the Nazi Movement developed in Germany.  It attracted by its superficial trappings and strict discipline considerable number of lower middle class young men and women who are normally not too intelligent and for whom life appeared to offer little to attract them.  And so they drifted towards the Nazi party because its policy and programme, such as they were, were simple, negative and did not require an active effort of the mind.  The Nazi party brought Germany to ruin and I have little doubt that if these tendencies are allowed to spread and increase in India, they would do enormous injury to India.  No doubt India would survive.  But she would be grievously wounded and would take a long time to recover.

5.       Our young men, now full of vitality, find few outlets for this vitality and so they drift towards wrong channels.  This is a serious matter for the future of the country and we cannot look on silently while this is happening.  It is, of course, completely opposed to Congress policy in the past or in the present.  Unfortunately, a number of Congressmen, without thinking, are attracted to this development of fascist and Nazi modes of thought and practice.  I have ventured, therefore, to draw your attention to this for we will ignore it at our peril.

Yours sincerely,

Jawaharlal Nehru

No words to defend

-By Rachit Seth

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When BJP President Rajnath Singh announced the name of Narendra Modi’s name as the PM candidate, he would not have imagined himself defending Modi, just two months after, on serious allegations of “stalking”. But politics is the art of the possible. Politics surprises you.

Rajnath Singh has been Modi’s best friend, ever since party patriarch L K Advani resigned during party’s National Executive, in June this year, and later retracted.

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Allegations of snooping and stalking, on an aspiring PM candidate at such an early stage of campaigning depicts a sorry picture for the BJP. The BJP which has been out of power since a decade, and is ruling only 4 states on its own in India needs a better campaign start than this.

In the current political landscape, BJP is so smug about the so called “Modi –wave” that it has chosen the party President to reply to the stalking allegations by its “Saheb”. The Cobrapost-Gulail expose raised certain important questions to the Gujarat government. However, the Gujarat government has gone completely mute, and has left the central leadership (read: Rajanath Singh) to do the fire fighting.

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The two protagonists of the tape- Gujarat Home Minister Amit Shah, and “Saheb” Narendra Modi are conspicuous of their silence. The mainstream media is busy chasing Shah, who is looking touring the politically crucial state of Uttar Pradesh, but not a syllable has been uttered by Shah in this context.
Strangely, Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj’s stand on the issue further testifies, how broken the BJP house is. Sushma Swaraj in an interview to a TV channel welcomed a CBI probe into the snooping-stalking row.

The BJP’s defence on the issue has been far from satisfactory.

BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman, has made the entire debate simplistic by tweeting about emergency and bugging in those days in order to defend Modi. In a desperate attempt to retaliate, she even tweeted an old story about Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi on which has already been trashed by the Supreme Court. She later talks about the excesses committed during emergency, at a TV show.

This has exposed the hollowness of BJP’s defence. They have absolutely no answers on some of the simple questions raised by the tape. They have produced two letters, one in which the young women’s father claims that he had asked the CM of Gujarat to “protect his daughter”. The father claims that since the CM was a “family friend”, he had asked his help. This letter is without any address, any contact numbers and has been circulated by the BJP. This letter has specific credentials, except that-it makes it a bit easier for the BJP to make it a private versus public debate.
The second letter produced days after the Cobrapost-Gulail expose in which the young women who was snooped by the three most important security agencies of the state, tells, that she asked her father to do so. Again there are no credentials in the fresh letter too.

It is certainly a public debate. Public authorities, public institutions, public exchequer is involved in surveillance of a young women, round the clock. Your money is involved, my money is involved. Therefore the BJP’s argument about it being a “Private case” falls flat.

The mere fact that public personals and public institutions were involved in surveillance of the girl and the state Home Minister was monitoring each and every movement of the girl and reporting it to his “Saheb” miserabely punctures BJP’s defence that it was an “Internal family affair”.

The sub-text here is simple. The BJP sees nothing wrong with state resources and state funds being deployed in illegal surveillance of a citizen to serve personal connections (If we go by BJP’s weak defence)

In addition to that, there are several other questions which Amit Shah and Narendra Modi should answer.
1) So far, neither the BJP nor any of its “Sahebs” have denied any snooping. Infact, the BJP has accepted that Saheb is Narendra Modi himself by releasing these letters.
2) Why and how were three key wings of the Gujarat Police—the State Intelligence Bureau, also known as CID Intelligence, the Crime Branch and the Anti-Terrorist Squad involved in stalking only one woman?
3) As per reports, there are more than 2500 people in Gujarat who have applied for security on various grounds, what about their security? Why such massive use of public institutions for just one person?
4) Content of the tape reveals that Saheb (Narendra Modi) was also conducting surveillance of these young women from his own independent sources, over and above the use of State police officers. Would either of them answer what are these extra-constitutional methods of snooping?
5) The most important question is – Why is BJP dead silent on police officer GL Singhal’s statement and IAS officer Pradeep Sharma’s petition in the High Court which establishes that this was the same women who was kept under watch by Shah and Co.
Apart from these, several other questions about Privacy issues, “Right to Life”, misuse of Telegraph Act and degrading public institutions have come up, which have got ample media space.
The snooping row also has deep connections with the fake encounter cases in Gujarat, specially the Ishrat Jahan case. IPS officer GL confessed to have played a part in planting arms on the person of Ishrat Jahan and three others. He also disclosed that D.G. Vanzara had told him that the killings of Ishrat Jahan and her associates were cleared by “safed” and “kali” dadhis, the alleged code names that Vanzara had, respectively, for Modi and Shah—a charge which has to be proved in a court of law.

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Neither the Modi government, nor the BJP had any pertinent defence in the Vanzara expose about the Tulsiram Prajapati fake encounter case, nor do have any defence now.
Extraordinarily, more than a dozen senior police officers in Gujarat are in jail or facing prosecution, in connection with cold-blooded murders dressed up as encounter deaths. Gujarat saw 21 encounter killings between October 2002 and December 2006.
The BJP, which made a hue and cry about Arun Jaitley’s phone tapping row, and stalled Parliament for 3 days has gone silent, and so has their PM candidate.