2014 - The year of the MODIvational story

The year 2014 is about to pass out into the sunset in a matter of a few hours. While it has been eventful throughout the world, 2014 has been nothing short of phenomenal in India.

2014 will be remembered as the year of the Modi Phenomenon. It began with the BJP's resurgence after a decade in the wilderness. The party scripted one victory after another - first in the state assembly elections at the close of December 2013 - and then drove home a sledgehammer in the form of a crushing victory in the national elections. The phenomenon is all the more remarkable because the BJP wrested a victory from the jaws of a united front of well-entrenched opponents - operating both from inside and outside the country. The BJP steamroller that won an absolute majority of its own, close to 300 seats, the first time in 30 years, has been possible because of only one individual, who is today the nation’s Prime Minister and also a global icon.

2014 was also the year when Narendra Damodardas Modi, Hindutva icon of unquestionable stature, ultimately won worldwide acceptability due to his invincibility, charismatic leadership, eloquent and convincing oratory.

This 'Modivational' story of 2014 shows that the most ordinary individual in India, a 'chaiwala', can harness an innate capacity to operate alone in an extremely hostile environment to decimate his enemies and attain a stature, which probably no other Indian leader could ever achieve in the political field. Arvind Bosmia, an Ahmedabad-based scholar and columnist, puts it most succinctly: 'Since Hindus are incapable of correcting the adverse situations they are in, Destiny has decided to make the correction by making Modi an improbable invincible hero.'

Let us not mistake the Modi Phenomenon to be just a whiff of fresh ideas. The advent of Modi signals the rise of a new leadership in Hindu society which is confidently breaking out of the prison of a self-defeatist mould crafted by its former imperial masters. It has already disrupted established norms by decisively destroying the undeserving ambitions of petty men soaked in greed and lust for power.

Cut to December 2013

How can Modi ever head the NDA? After all, secularist leaders like Nitish, Naveen, Jayalalithaa and Mamata would never support him. Modi can never be the Prime Minister of India'. So 'predicted' a senior Delhi BJP leader in a private conversation with me just about the same time last year, when the ageing, decrepict and secularized BJP 'leaders' saw a chance for themselves if BJP was to fall well short of a majority (which was what many in the party secretly wished and worked for). Obviously, this worthy could never imagine in his wildest dreams that Modi was ultimately going to win more than the required number of seats to form a government on his own and would eventually, not need any NDA ‘allies’ at all.

Of course, I now write this retrospectively. But even at that time, those who had some inkling of the Modi Phenomenon knew that a massive mobilization of the Indian society - especially the Hindu society, beyond its usual caste equations - was happening on an unparalleled scale on the ground in favour of Modi. The rag-tag coalition-era was fast evaporating in mammoth crowds that chanted 'Modi-Modi' relentlessly from Guwahati to Mangalore, from Kolkata to Jaipur and from Thiruvananthapuram to Leh. Narendra Modi had succeeded in making BJP, a pan-India party for the first time in its entire history.

Meanwhile, far removed from this ground reality, each of the the BJP's armchair Prime Ministerial aspirants was trying to project himself as 'the leader' of a cobbled-up future NDA. But there was one man alone Modi who had the confidence and also forsaw the formation of a pure BJP government at the center. And surprisingly, he could also see the road ahead clearly. He knew he would get a majority on his own. And, indeed the miracle materialized!

A hostile media's 'kangaroo court' campaign: 2002-2013

The then ruling UPA regime, with the unholy assistance of its caged-parrot CBI, foreign-funded NGOs and a biased 'kangaroo-court' like media had been busy dishing out pre-judged 'verdicts' against Narendra Modi - who was then Gujarat's Chief Minister - and his close associates in scores of frivolous cases pertaining to the Gujarat riots and anti-terror encounters of the Gujarat Police. Calumny against Modi poured in every evening in many primetime media shows anchored by professional Modi-bashers - whose sole intention was to somehow establish Modi's involvement in various riot-related killings or 'fake encounters' in Gujarat. Yet, despite the host of formidable and hostile forces arraigned against him, both in the country and internationally, Modi emerged from all this unscathed. He was found innocent by the country's highest judicial institutions.

This hostile media cabal has been yapping at Modi relentlessly ever since the 2002 Gujarat riots. To no avail, as their vituperative attacks only helped Modi gain massive sympathy from the masses, who had by now seen through the reality of a large section of media as being partisan, anti-Hindu and intellectually dishonest. This has resulted in a huge Hindu backlash, manifest in the form of Modi’s unstoppable victories in Gujarat’s assembly elections in 2002, 2007 and 2013 by massive margins.

Narendra Modi wrests the development card from 'progressives'

It is not just emotiveness associated with Modi that has led to unprecedented electoral victories in Gujarat. His Hindutva credentials apart, Modi was also perceived as the development messiah who began destroying the corrupt and inefficient Nehruvian socialist system by creating a massive infrastructure for agriculture and industry. Gujarat’s parched lands were now being irrigated not only by a network of canals but also by construction of lakhs of checkdams all over the state, which miraculously raised the groundwater level almost everywhere. Massive pumping of water through huge diameter pipelines - through which one can drive in a car - transported water to the dry region of Saurashtra from the water surplus South Gujarat.

No wonder the Gujarat Model has become the new Indian benchmark of efficiency, setting new records of double digit growth rates in industrial and agricultural production. Electricity is now a 24x7 reality all over the state, something other states in the country can still only dream of. The rural-urban divide was being bridged by investments in huge infrastructural projects in rural areas. Thousands of crores have been invested in Gujarat's tribal areas too. More significantly, investments in skill development are now creating conditions for industrial investment even in the remote areas of the state.

What a turnaround! Once, BJP was projected by the leftist intelligentsia as anti-development, anti-poor and religious fanatics. But now Modi had snatched the development card from the so-called progressive elite of the Congress and the Communists. The Congress and Communist models now stand thoroughly exposed and discredited as lethargic, unprogressive, inefficient, decrepit and corrupt.

Hindu-bashing - no longer a profitable pastime

Recent press reports say that the Congress party has sought feedback from its cadre about its perception among people as an ‘anti-Hindu” organization. For a party that has ceaselessly accused Modi of being anti-Muslim and therefore, an unacceptable leader in a secular country like India, this is quite a somersault. The Congress and its secular siblings find Modi’s acceptability rising exponentially by the day, not only in India, but in the US, Japan and Australia too. In stark contrast to Modi, a genuine mass leader, the Congress finds itself in the dock as a sectarian outfit pandering to the rights of Muslims alone in a Hindu majority country like India. The dynastic party is trying to fathom why it has become an 'anti- Hindu' organization in the eyes of the majority community of India. After scripting the draft of the anti Hindu Prevention of Communal Violence Bill, the Congress should not be surprised for having earned its anti-Hindu image.

Modi's relentless Victory March continues

Narendra Modi’s call for cleaning up India through his Swachh Bharat Mission has made Indians aware of doing their bit to keep the country clean. Public places have begun looking cleaner with increased consciousness among citizenry. Municipal corporations are lifting larger quantities of waste everyday as compared to the past. The Prime Minister’s 'Make in India' campaign has attracted many giant corporations from the developed world to set up huge industrial plants in India. Topnotch defence manufacturers from France are planning to manufacture fifth generation weaponry in India. This will undoubtedly result in the upgrading of infrastructure, skills and economic activity in the country. Land acquisition for industrial growth is being simplified. A massive programme of skill development is being launched for the creation of world class human resources in the country.

The Prime Minister has paid special attention to national security, which is being incrementally strengthened. Massive investments in the defence sector have been planned to extricate it from the rot created by the erstwhile UPA regime in this crucial arena.

In a world that today faces the looming threat of a medieval jihadi outfit - the barbarian ISIS - India is fortunate to have a leader like NaMo as its Prime Minister!

Courtesy Niti Central

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