Narendra Modi using Economic policy well to India’s interests

Narendra Modi is about to complete two years in office as the Prime Minister of India. In the past two years improving relations with other countries has been his primary focus area. Though during his pre-election speeches he didn’t make many references with regards to his foreign policy. It was going to be one of the most important spaces to be watched over by his opponents and others as well as he was considered inexperienced. But surprising all, he has been very successful in improving India’s foreign relations.

The start itself was very spectacular, he surprised all by inviting heads of states of SAARC countries for his swearing in ceremony, even before he formally took charge of office. He has taken care of India’s interests very well, particularly in the neighborhood though some challenges remain there, in Nepal and Pakistan. He has improved relations with Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. His visits to ASEAN, USA, France and UK have also been successful, though it is a little too early to comment but the trajectory that he has given to India’s ACT EAST LINK WEST policy is spectacular. His visits to BRICS and India-EU summits also yielded favorable start, a renewed push to India’s efforts to increase its influence in the world.

The third India-Africa summit at Delhi is also a step in positive direction, as China has done very well in Africa, this includes a naval base in Djibouti. His visits to Seychelles and Mauritius have further strengthened our position in the Indian Ocean region, a region where we cannot lose ground to China.

Diplomacy, in most crude terms, is the management of foreign relations of a country by art of negotiations. He has certainly given more substance to it. He has been using cultural diplomacy and Economic diplomacy very well. In this article we take a look at how he has been using Economic diplomacy to secure India’s interests.

Economic Policy as the hinge pin of Foreign Relation:

We live in a time where the need for placing greater focus on Economic policy is well recognized. Indian representatives posted abroad have so far concentrated more on political work. Modi, in way of sorts, has become the “Super Ambassador” for India. His Economic Policy has been a major underpinning of his foreign visits. Modi has attached sufficient importance to Economic interests and defense interests. For instance, India became the first country to purchase Uranium from Australia despite not being a signatory the International non-signatory treaty. This should bode well for India’s energy sector which is facing chronic shortage. India and Australia finalized a civil nuclear deal that would allow India to buy Uranium from Australia. This announcement came after Modi met Australian PM alongside G-20 meet in Antalya, Turkey.

Major objectives of Economic policy of a country is to influence commercial, economic and political policies of host country to make it conducive for our national interests. Also, working with international bodies like WTO, IMF, World Bank and other multilateral platforms for shaping their decisions in interests of our country.

Modi has taken a firm stand at WTO for protecting our interests. He has also been a big advocate of improving relations with European Union, ASEAN and its ASEAN Economic Community, RCEP. In this time when USA and China have been working with other countries for shaping trade treaties like TPP, FTAAP; we will have to watch every foot we put forward very carefully, as these may or may not always work in our interests.

We now take a look at two of the most important partnerships taking shape under Modi.

India and USA

It is India-USA relations where Modi has been able to turn around things pretty deftly. In December of 2013, during the Devyani Khobragade episode, things looked much worse, though even at that time it was certain that it would remain a temporary episode but Modi was quick to realize that if India has to ensure steady growth and flow of investments then USA has to be the major source of it.

Modi has already visited USA on multiple occasions and Obama became first USA president to visit India twice during his time in oval office. Modi’s efforts seem to be working well, USA expressed its support for India’s membership at Nuclear Supplier’s group, today only, as I am writing this article. Though China has been working with certain other countries to ensure that India doesn’t get to be a member of NSG but USA’s open support is very important to notice here.

India and Japan

India maintains close relations with Japan as a result of Economic diplomacy. The Japanese companies like Honda, Sony, and Toyota were in fact among the first to make investments in India. India is also a big market for Japanese companies. Japan will be investing 3.5 billion Dollars in India in next five years, both in Public and Private sectors. A large part of this money would be invested in Ganga Rejuvenation, Smart Cities, transport systems, next generation infrastructure and skill developments.

Summary

Narendra Modi is changing landscape of India’s Economic and Foreign Policy by merging the two deftly. It is difficult to say whether its Economic policy that turns around Political Policy or vice versa. It is heartening to see that Under Modi, the Foreign Office and the Finance ministry have realized the importance of Economic policy in securing India’s interests.

Contributor: Sachin Diwaker

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Public Meeting Addressed by PM Modi in Tamil Nadu and Kerala

Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi visited various states of the South region of the nation including, Kerala and Tamil Nadu where he addressed rallies for second round of the election campaign. The main objective of these public events to spread awareness about the BJP government and its achievements in the last few years.

First Interaction

On 6th May 2016, PM Modi campaigned in Chennai and Hosur, Tamil Nadu where he emphasized on the clean image of his government and stated that the upcoming state elections were all about protecting the state from vicious trap of corruption. With your support, we can unshackle the state from corruption which can help in the development process in many ways by taking the state to newer height of progress.

PM Modi said, “Our Government’s initiatives are aimed at welfare of the poor.”

He highlighted the achievement of the government in various sectors like technology, energy, financial support etc. PM Modi also mentioned the initiatives of NDA government that have been taken to support the poor families like beneficial schemes for the farmers. Earlier, it was very difficult for the farmers to purchase urea, so they had to suffer a lot. In order to provide support, government has provided neem coated urea that has been providing effective results for the crop protection.

Shri Narendra Modi also emphasized on the social sectors and entrepreneurship. He described the schemes like Start-Up India, Stand-Up India, Mudra Yojana that have been executed keeping in mind all the factors of business startup. These have produced a remarkable change in the lives of people. He also explained the supreme societal transformation that occurred due to the combining efforts of people for ‘Give-up Campaign’.

We want a prosperous Tamil Nadu where the youth gets opportunities”, PM Modi Said.

Describing the transparency of BJP government, he also mentioned about the elimination of interviews for the Group C, D and non-gazetted government jobs which will provide great benefits to the youth. Shri Narendra Modi highlighted the initiatives and schemes for transforming the lives of poor people.

Second Interaction

On 8th May 2016, Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi visited Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu to address public meeting there. He stated that the state has waited for so long for the change in governance. For this, BJP government has come forward to take the state to newer heights of development.

He said, “Ours is a government that works for the people and is concerned about their well-being.”

While addressing people, he expressed the concern for the progress of people. As many youths in our country are short of job opportunities. As a result, they have to suffer a lot. He said that this state has various beautiful destinations for the tourist visit and it can provide many job opportunities to the people. Along with this, he mentioned the need of proper infrastructure to attract tourists which can not only increase their interest, but also help the people to earn money for the living.

Shri Narendra Modi said, “Good infrastructure brings more tourists. There was long standing demand for a good road connecting Kanyakumari and Thiruvananthapuram.”

PM Modi also mentioned that our government will invest Rs.21000 Crore for the construction of new port in Kanyakumari which will boost up the tourism and provide earning opportunities to the people. He believes that development of the state is not possible until the corruption is not eliminated, only then the fruits of development will reach the homes of poor.

BJP is dedicated to free Tamil Nadu from corruption,” PM Modi said.

He also talked about the transparent system of the work mechanism of NDA government and stated that in the last two years, there has been no single allegation of corruption against this government.

Third Interaction

On 8th May 2016, PM Modi held third interaction with the people in Kasaragod, Kuttanad and Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. PM Modi urged the people to support the government so that we can assure the all-round development of the state. He talked about various sectors that need development like agriculture, wellbeing of farmer community and growth of this sector which can effectively improve the lives of people. He highlighted the steps that have been taken for the welfare of farmers like Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana which can protect the farmers from natural calamities like droughts and floors.

Shri Narendra Modi said, Our Government’s only mantra is development. Whatever steps we will initiate, would be for welfare of poor.”

PM Modi also mentioned the hard work of central government and officials who indulged their true efforts to help the needy people in all possible ways. He talked about the development agenda of BJP Parties which will include various plans and schemes for the people including, farmers, young generation and needy individuals.

PM Modi said, “Kerala needs development and good governance.”

Contributor: Sunpreet Kaur

 

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E-Vehicles Launched by PM Modi in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh

On 1st May 2016, Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi visited Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh where he launched Clean India Campaign -Eco Friendly Solar Powered Boats for plying on river Ganga. The BJP Leaders and British High Commissioner Sir Dominic Asquith were also present at this event. PM Modi distributed eleven boats to the owners at the Assi Ghat and advised the boatmen to spend their income for good cause. It is a great attempt of PM Modi to make clean and green Varanasi with these e-boats which run on solar energy.

Using these eco-friendly boats will not only generate revenue stream for the people but also there will be an increase in conversion of manual or diesel motor boats into e-boats. Moreover, it will also help for the economic growth of the city and make surrounding environment fresh and clean. Launching these, PM Modi has ensured pollution ride for the tourists on the Ganga. With this initiative, there will be employment opportunity for more than 10000 boatmen who have been in this profession for the past long years. These include boatmen belonging to backward communities: mallah, kewat, manjhis and nishadhs.

PM Modi said, “We are empowering the poor so that the poor can battle poverty.”  

What are E-Boats and what is the work mechanism?

The introduction of these “e-boats” is being seen as a remedial measure for the alarming pollution level. These boats have been designed specifically with traditional themes and these will give comfortable ride to the tourists. The boats have been modified to install solar panels. These have two batteries that can be charged by solar energy. Opting no fuel mechanism will not only reduce the air pollution, but also prolonged the durability of boats. Moreover, The Sudhanshu Mehta Foundation has also come forward to become a part of this mission by arranging and providing several charging points at the Assi Ghat. One time fully charged batteries can last up to eight hours.

The cost effective and solar energy based models will be the first ever launched e-vehicles for the riding purpose. While enjoying rides, there will no disturbance with loud noise or vibration of generator. The Shikara Look Boats have been refurbished and environment friendly raw material has been used for designing process. These boats will also reduce the operational costs for those who earn their livelihoods through such boats. There is mobile charging facility which will encourage the tourists to go for boating and this will result in great earning for the boatmen community members.

After taking the boat ride, PM Modi said, “Schemes that strengthen the people are important, not schemes that strengthen vote banks.”

Following this boat ride amidst traditional slogan of ‘Har Har Mahadev’ by the charged gathering at ghat steps. While addressing large gathering at Assi Ghat, Shri Narendra Modi said that our government has launched such schemes that will empower the poor to fight and defeat against poverty themselves. He stated that the nation, government and banks are always there to help poor in the best possible ways. He said that our government believes in “going to the root” of the problems to provide suitable solution to people of the nation. Addressing member of boatmen communities as “sisters and brothers”, he mentioned the benefits of e-boats for earning money for their livelihood. Further, he asked boatmen not to misuse their earning for unnecessary purpose like liquor consumption.

He talked about the benefits of using eco-friendly boats. PM Modi said, “Tourists will be keen to come and take a ride on Varanasi’s e-boats, will this not boost tourism here? With e-boats, the boatmen will be able to save Rs 500 a day without spending on diesel. They can use this money for their family. Whatever money you save, use it for the wellbeing of your children – their food, their education but don’t waste what you save.”

He asked the people to support the Clean India Campaign. He also mentioned that it is our prior responsibility to ensure the healthy living and surrounding environment for our family and nation.

PM Modi also distributed e-rickshaws to the owners. He also held a Chaupal with 16 rickshaw pullers in the Parliamentary Constituency Varanasi to mention the benefits of these vehicles. He also added that there will be proper training to drive these vehicles under the Skill India Scheme.

Chaupal with 16 rickshaw pullers

PM Modi holds Chaupal with rickshaw pullers

He also mentioned the achievement of ISRO scientists’ i.e. successful launch of seven satellites to provide GPS services which will also be helpful for the boatmen to guide the directions.  He praised the contribution of 21 Crore poor families who have opened their bank accounts under Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana and raised the economy by total deposit of Rs. 35000 Crore. He asked the beneficiaries to check out the benefits of insurance schemes that are linked to their accounts. There is 60% contribution of Dalit, tribal and BC families and 22% of women in this scheme.  While considering the critical financial condition of the poor family, PM Modi said that poor people of the country do not want loans in thousands of rupees or crores. Their requirement is meager. The way these poor people are depositing the installment to the banks should be judged that who is really “rich by heart”.

He said the Centre had plans to allocate “tremendous resources” to develop Uttar Pradesh. The fruits of development have to reach the eastern part of the nation and then we will gain great strength to fight against poverty.

Contributor: Sunpreet Kaur

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NAVIC – Perfect Example of Make in India Mission

Make in India is an initiative taken by Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to encourage the industrials and business holders to manufacture products in the country. This program was launched on a large platform where various sectors like automobiles, aviation, chemicals, construction, electrical machinery, electronic systems, defense manufacturing, food processing, information technology, renewable energy, ports and shipping, roads and highways, space and astronomy, wellness, business process management etc. have been covered for Foreign Direct Investment. Among all these, NAVIC has been considered as one of the perfect examples of Make in India Mission.

On 28 April 2016, the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi witnessed the launch of India’s Polar Navigational Satellite IRNSS-1G via live video telecast from the South Block in New Delhi. The PSLV, carrying the satellite, lifted off from Sriharikota at 12.50 PM on Thursday. This satellite is the final spacecraft for the regional navigation network, which will provide informational data to users across the subcontinent independent of foreign satellite systems. According to the officials of Space Science, the total cost of this navigation project amounted to be around Rs. 1420 Crore.

ISRO mentioned that nowadays, the need of navigation system has become quite essential because the approach to foreign government controlled navigation satellite systems can be limited in the extreme conditions. This IRNSS has considered navigation system establishment using a mix of GSO (Geosynchronous Orbit) satellite and GEO (Geostationary Earth Orbit) satellites.

There will be provision of two types of services: Restricted Services (RS) to the authorized users and Standard Positioning Services (SPS) to all the users. With this launch, India has become a member of club of countries who have their own global positioning systems. The data position and accurate services provided by IRNSS-1G will include:

  • Marine and Aerial Navigation
  • Mapping and Land Survey Data
  • Fleet Management
  • Mobile Phone Services like Integration
  • Voice Navigation for Vehicles
  • Terrestrial Navigation
  • Disaster Management

The seventh member of this Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS -1G) has completed the deployment of an indigenous network of satellites thousands of miles above the Earth to broadcast information about user’s location across the nation and neighboring territories.

The PM Modi addressed and congratulated ISRO scientists and space officials through video conferencing on the successful launch of satellite. He said that our scientists have achieved many accomplishments in the Space Science. While mentioning the importance of Space Science, he stated that the lives of people can be transformed with the valuable information provided by the navigation satellite.

Shri Narendra Modi said, “The Indian Scientists have played paramount role in Space Science.”

“With this successful launch, we will determine our own paths powered by our technology. This is a great gift to people from scientists,” the Prime Minister said.

The phenomenal efforts will be beneficial for the fellow SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) nations in an obvious reference to the IRNSS system to provide position accuracy information of better than 20 meters over India and the regions that extend about 1500 square km around India. He mentioned it as the perfect example of “Make in India,” and “Made for Indians.”

He also mentioned that our Scientists are on the threshold of completing a navigation satellite constellation which will provide India and it’s surrounding an independent Geo-positioning system. This will be the unique system which has been developed with the intention of providing an independent navigation service with a combination of minimum number of satellites. Unlike other global positioning services, that have been provided by Russia, the United States, China and the European Union, our Space Officials and ISRO Scientists have gone for a regional satellite service which require only a seven satellite constellation.

In the language of Digital Technology, PM defined this navigation satellite system as “Navigation with Indian Constellation, NAVIC as it will not only guide the fishermen but also helpful to save their time and efforts. Apart from this, the GPS system help to locate the facilities of shipping and landing areas.

The new technology will benefit our people, our fishermen. The world will know it as NAVIC,” PM Modi said.

Shri Narendra Modi invited the SAARC nations to navigate with the Indian Constellation of Satellites. He also emphasized the independence of $210 Million Indian Navigation Systems. He said that we should feel proud that our nation has become independent for the own GPS system and services. From now, we need not depend of other suitabilities as our scientists have provided us the best navigation solution with their amazing hard work and long efforts. This is a great gift to 125 Crore people of the country by scientists. PM Modi explained the importance and benefits of navigation system for various purposes like fishermen can easily track the location of the region of maximum possibilities. Moreover, they can also easily find out the shortest route of fish tracking.

With this global positioning system, we can accurately track and know the location and positioning of particular region like plane landing location. It will be also help to provide an immediate help to the specific location in case of natural disasters. This system will cover all sides from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and Kutch to Kamrup of the nation.

Contributor: Sunpreet Kaur

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Modi launched Pradhan Mantri Ujjawal Yojna in Ballia, UP

Coinciding with the Labour day, Prime minister Narendra Modi launched Pradhan Mantri Ujjawal Yojna in Ballia, Uttar Pradesh on 1st May 2016. This scheme aim to provide free cooking gas to below poverty line families residing mostly in the rural houselhold.

Narendra Modi was jubilant and congratulated 1.5 crore families who gave up their LPG subsidy thus saving ₹4166 crores Government expenditure provided on subsidy. Subsidy provided on each gas cylinder by central Government amounts to ₹5000 annually. “Give It up” campaign which was launched a year back have got tremendous response and Modi Government have succeeded in drawing people’s attention towards the disparity in household income as well as public good.

The Prime Minister also spoke on the significance of May Day or labour day and said “The new ‘Mantra’ should be “Labourers, unite the world” as against “Workers of the World, Unite”, the slogan which used to be raised earlier. He added, the situation has changed now. The biggest factor is the sweat of the workers who hold the power to unite the world, people who were only raising slogans to unite the workers have been losing ground the world over”.

Narendra Modi also mentioned his visit to Uttar Pradesh has nothing to do with the election campaign. Motive behind choosing Balia was to draw attention towards the risk and nuisances of using traditional chulhas which account for more than 80% in the district, a way below the national average. Modi said, poverty can only be eradicated if poor are empowered, and are provided ample resources and opportunities be it through proper houses, jobs, electricity drinking water and electricity. Each plays an important role in the development and provide economic sancity to the region. Initiative like Pradhanmatri Ujjawal Yojana aim to bridge the gap and make rural household economically stable.

Pradhan mantri Ujjawal Yojna would be partly funded by the money saved from “Give It Up” campaign as well as funds approved by the cabinet which amounts to about ₹8000 crores. The Scheme will provide a financial support of ₹1600 to each LPG connection in below poverty line households for the coming three years. However, eligibility to avail this benefit would de decided consulting the State governments and Union Territories”.

In the first year, 1.5 crore connections; for which Rs. 2,000 crore have already been allocated by the Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in this year’s budget) will be distributed to the women below poverty line.

To be part of the “Give It Up” campaign and contribute towards the Pradhan mantri Ujjawal Yojna, visit this page and surrender your LPG subsidy www.givitup.in

g2Contributor: Shivaji Singh

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