Why should voters give Modi govt a third term with more than 400 seats?

Confident of a win in the third term, Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked his ministers during his latest cabinet meeting held on 17 March (Sunday) to chalk out an action plan for the first 100 days of the next term and also to draft a detailed roadmap for the next five years of what they need to achieve. Elaborating further, the Prime Minister said that the ministers can do so by engaging with officials and secretaries from their ministries to explore strategies for executing their policy agenda and to achieve the intended goals.

Call it optimism, willpower, or part of the meticulous and long-term planning of a visionary leader, Narendra Modi seems to be sure that he will make a formidable comeback as his second term comes to a close. Since Modi became Prime Minister in May 2014… from then until now… his government has had a commendable track record of good governance and service delivery across various sectors. Thus, his tenure hasn’t been that of empty promises. Whatever commitments were made in BJP’s Election Manifestoes have been fulfilled in a timebound manner.

For instance, the NDA government could streamline India’s tax system by implementing GST, target black money circulation and clean up the parallel economy through the demonetisation of high-value currency notes, boost domestic manufacturing through ‘Make in India’ and ‘Startup India’ campaigns, foster entrepreneurship and digital literacy through Digital India initiative. Modi government has also eliminated corruption in high places, abrogated Article 370 and scrapped 35A, abolished Triple Talaq, rebuilt the Ram Temple in Ayodhya, and secured the borders in the Northwest and Northeast.

The BJP-led government’s other notable achievements include cleanliness and sanitation schemes like Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, The Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana aimed at financial inclusion, infrastructure projects like the Sagarmala and Bharatmala initiatives that are aimed at improving connectivity and transportation networks. On the foreign policy front, Modi’s administration strengthened ties with major powers and neighbouring countries. Furthermore, the federal government also focussed on renewable energy expansion with ambitious targets.

Why Modi needs a landslide victory

Now, let us look at why Narendra Modi needs to be given a third term as Prime Minister, and that too with a thumping majority of more than 400 seats. While economic development and security of the country are the top priorities in Modi’s bucket list, some other major challenges need to be dealt with on an urgent basis. For instance, the overall population of the second-largest majority community in India, which falsely claims to be a minority community in our country, is set to explode in a big way, unless brakes are put on their breeding machinery.

So, besides implementing a Uniform Civil Code and Population Control Bill, the political party or alliance that comes to power at the Centre after this Lok Sabha election will also have to redefine what constitutes a “Minority”. It will ensure that the second largest religious demographic component of the Indian population does not unduly get the benefits meant for the real minorities. Furthermore, the high-handedness of the Waqf Board and the sheer arrogance with which they have been encroaching on real estate, too has to be reined in.

Amendment of Articles 25 and 30

When the country was partitioned in 1947, the Constitution that was adopted, was almost entirely modelled on a Western template that assumed that a majoritarian society would hinder or hamper the growth of minorities. It did not take into account the fact that the Hindu society is intrinsically secular and diverse, and will never capitalise on its majority status nor impose itself on the minorities.

This was the reason why a small number of fierce warmongers were able to rule on this gentle giant of a civilization. The fact that the Hindu communities need to be protected, was never taken into account while framing the Constitution. As a result, while concrete steps were taken to protect the interests of minorities, no such efforts were made to protect Hindus because of which the latter were left entirely to their own resources. For example, Articles 25 and 30 are two such provisions that were supposed to ensure that the “minority” religions had the full freedom to proselytise, set up educational institutions, and propagate their religion.

While Article 25 guarantees freedom of religion, it is also indiscriminately used by Christians and Muslims to convert Hindus. Meanwhile, Article 30 allows them to set up missionary schools and madrassas to preach hatred towards Hindus. While missionary schools are foreign to the culture of Bharat, madrasa education is a relic of slavery and is deemed unacceptable in modern times.

Over the last seven decades, these two articles in the Indian Constitution have become instrumental in creating a skewed proportion of educational institutions funded by the taxpayer’s money but affiliated with minority religions. This, in turn, has created pockets all over the country, where Hindu communities are placed at a severe disadvantage, having no resources to save their own faith.

Such government funding for minority religions also meant that entire villages were often lured to convert to other religions that promised them financial assistance as well as social security. The fact that Hindus have become a minority in more than seven states in India, points to the need for steps to be taken to reverse this trend, or at least preserve what is left of the Sanatana Dharma culture.

Due to Article 25, some regressive and primitive medieval practices continue to be observed, such as Halala, Mu’tah, Taharrush, Talaq-e-Ehsan, Talaq-e-Ba’ain, and Talaq-e-Kinaya. Therefore, Articles 25, 29 and 30 should either be amended, revamped, or scrapped to put an end to regressive practices of religious conversions that are vestiges of slavery.

Preservation of heritage and historical perspective

In every continent where the invaders erased the native population, the invasion has been justified by the narrative that the dominant civilization was stronger and hence deserved to replace the natives. Such narratives are in vogue in Australia, America, and some other regions of the world. Bharat has survived the assaults of invaders, but we are still taught history from the perspective of the invader.

For example, there are many tenets of Advanced Mathematics and Astronomy that even universities of Europe attribute to mathematicians and astronomers of ancient India. The Leibniz series that gives the value of π has been renamed the Madhava-Leibniz series in honour of Madhava of Sangamagrama. While European scholars have no qualms attributing the Sine and Cosine series to Madhava, as he discovered them more than 300 years before Newton, students in India have not even heard of such brilliant mathematicians such as Neelakantha Somayaji and Jyeshthadeva.

Our students are ignorant of the fact that Jyesthadeva compiled the first treatise on advanced Calculus in the world, in a work called Yuktibhasha. These are just a few instances to emphasise why the entire curriculum of History taught in Indian schools needs to be revamped to make the youth of Bharat aware of the glory of their heritage and the common threads that bind them. This is something that has been neglected, with the focus being on divisive narratives that have only served to promote strife, instead of pride in Bharat’s glorious past.

Need for a Renaming Commission

Furthermore, there are thousands of reminders or remnants of slavery in the form of name boards of invaders and jihadis that persist in public spaces in Indian society. To reclaim our national identity, there is an urgent need to rename streets, roads, towns, and cities that are currently in the name of Babur, Aurangzeb, Lodhi, Tughlaq, Humayun, Tipu Sultan, Mahmud of Ghazni and others. To rectify historical injustices, these streets, roads, towns, and cities should be renamed after our native and unsung heroes and freedom fighters such as Rani Abbakka Devi, Rani Chennamma, Ahom Kings, Marthanda Varma, and others.

Doing so will symbolize a break from our colonial pasts, promote cultural pride, and foster unity by celebrating our indigenous culture and history. It will also create awareness among Indian youths about the resistance that was put up against colonialism and make them reject oppressive legacies.

Even if it is contentious, this is an essential step for promoting a shared narrative of resilience and cultural authenticity. It’s vital to initiate an inclusive dialogue while ensuring that the renaming initiatives respect the complexity of our nation’s history.

Hence, there arises a need to establish a Renaming Commission through legislative means. This commission would be tasked with systematically addressing and replacing any signage that perpetuates symbols of past colonial or imperial rule, thereby fostering a more culturally sensitive and historically accurate public space.

One Nation, One Election, One Administration

For the country to progress, all wasteful expenditures will have to be slashed. Currently, the process of mobilisation of the government machinery for the conduct of staggered elections to different state Assemblies is a huge drain on the government exchequer and a big distraction in the political calendar of our nation. Hence, there is a need to reduce its frequencies as the electoral process can be simplified and the polling expenses can be reduced to a fraction if elections to both the Parliament and Legislative Assemblies are conducted as a single process at the same time.

It will also help in the unification process of the country and significantly reduce the wastage of funds that can be utilised for development measures. As the One Nation, One Election concept for Parliament and the State Assemblies was in vogue from 1952 to 1967, our country can handle it much more successfully in modern times. Furthermore, India also requires an all-encompassing law that can cancel the citizenship of hardened criminals and thereby make them pay for the damages they inflict on the society, public property, and moral fabric of our nation. Meanwhile, One Nation, One Police is required for effective governance.

Unfortunately, the current bureaucratic structure also dates back to the days of slavery. For instance, the IAS, IPS, SHOs, Tehsildars, and SDMs all are being administered by the state governments according to the whims and fancies of the politicians in power. This is the reason why we desperately need a One Nation, One Administrative Code as it will significantly help in ending the colonial work culture prevailing in our Judiciary and Bureaucracy

Why NDA needs over 400 seats

For passing ordinary bills, the political party in power needs the support of only a simple majority of more than 50 per cent of members. However, to pass a bill that aims to amend the Constitution, a majority of the total membership of the House, and a majority of two-thirds of the members present and voting is necessary.

Meanwhile, Article 108 of the Constitution provides for a joint sitting of the two houses of Parliament in certain cases, which can be convened by the President of India when one house has either rejected a bill passed by the other house, has not taken action on a bill transmitted to it by the other house for six months, or is in disagreement with the amendments proposed by the Lok Sabha on a bill passed by it.

Though the BJP-led NDA currently has a comfortable majority in the Lok Sabha, it holds only 117 seats in the Rajya Sabha, which falls short by 4 seats of the 50 per cent majority mark of 121. Considering that the numerical strength of the Lok Sabha is 543 and that of the Rajya Sabha is 245, the BJP-led NDA government would need the support of roughly 526 members if a joint session of the two houses of Parliament is called by the President of India to pass any conflicting legislation.

Given its 117 seats in the Rajya Sabha, NDA would require more than 400 seats in the Lok Sabha to reach the necessary threshold of 526 seats so that it can make essential amendments to the outdated Articles of the Constitution and set right the distortions and unnecessary additions made to it during the Congress Party rule of more than five decades.

Only then our nation will see a massive improvement in the quality of governance as well as rapid progress and development on all fronts. Hence, we Indian voters must give the BJP-led NDA more than 400 seats (out of 543) in the upcoming Lok Sabha election. As such, we need to promote ‘Abki Baar 400 Paar’, as a catchy campaign slogan to create a lasting impression in the minds of Indian voters so that they vote for the BJP-led NDA candidates in their constituencies

(The article Why should voters give Modi govt a third term with more than 400 seats? published in ‘Organiser’)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *