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18 April 2013

Modi's India: From Boom To Doom

Those who want him in haste will regret their wish in leisure
[This view was revised subsequently following further study of the  Gujarat model; view the author's comments at the end of the article.]

It's now an undeniable fact that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi favours a handful of industrialists at the expense of other bidders. By making business smooth for them, the areas where they operate shine in the short-term. Then complaints of unfair competition start pouring in. 

Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit 2013
This can no longer be pooh-poohed as a politically motivated speculation. How Modi bent the rules for a handful of cronies is now a part of the report by the Comptroller & Auditor General (CAG) of India on Gujarat. "Gujarat State Petronet Ltd (GSPL) was responsible for deviating from the agreed terms of recovery of gas transportation charges from the specified entry point of the company's pipeline network and this led to passing of undue benefit of Rs 52.27 crore to RIL," says the report. The State-owned Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation (GSPC) extended "undue benefits" to the chief minister's "favoured few", mainly Adani Energy and Essar Steel companies, which, coupled with its poor management and faulty agreements on exploration of oil and gas in the Krishna-Godavari Basin alone, cost the exchequer over Rs 5,000 crore. The Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Ltd (GUVNL) did not adhere to terms of the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA), which led to short recovery of penalty of Rs 160.26 crore and passing of undue benefit to Adani Power Ltd (APL). The CAG has also indicted the Gujarat government for regularising 7,24,897 square metres of land “encroached” by Essar Steel Company Ltd (ESCL) at Hazira in Surat at “unjustifiable” price, resulting in short recovery of ad hoc occupancy price to the extent of Rs 238.50 crore.

Following stifling of competition in the market, the Gujarat Government gagged the Opposition in the State Assembly as well. There are now only four Congress MLAs in the House; the rest have been suspended. As a result, there could be no debate on the damning CAG reports. Congress MLAs Rajendrasinh Parmar, Paranjayadityasinhji Parmar, Jodhaji Thakore and Amit Chavda sought discussion on CAG report, which the speaker Ganpar Vasava disallowed. Of course, this writer, now a member of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), has no love lost for the Congress, indisputably the epicentre of corruption in the country.

The CAG critique notwithstanding, there is a considerable and vocal section of the Indian population that will now settle for nothing less than Modi as the real head of state. The clamour for Modi in the upper section of the middle class owes primarily to the want of good salary and a booming job market that they are expecting the Gujarat chief minister to unleash, should he become the prime minister. But there is more to it.

Since the time one gains social consciousness, one hears from people who lose their battles against corruption more often than not in their respective fields of work that the only way to deliver India is to hand it over to a dictator! Given Modi's reputation of authoritarianism inside his party and the Sangh Parivar — built by episodes like his battle of wits against the D4 (Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley, Ananth Kumar and Venkaiah Naidu) and events like his order to demolish temples in the State that flouted civic laws, the 2008 arrest of VHP General Secretary Ashwin Patel and his insistence on removal of Sanjay Joshi as a precondition for him to attend the BJP's national executive meet in Mumbai last year — his persona comes closest to that of a despot. With the country being plagued by a plethora of problems, a personality like this readily catches the imagination of the frustrated. The RSS's reservations about him diminish, too, when sections in the organisation look up to him as the only head of government who can tackle the issues of Islamist terrorism and massive infiltration of Bangladeshis into this country and their settlement across Indian cities to serve as the Congress's vote-banks.

The flip side of this gambit does not, of course, interest these people at this point of time, so anxious they are to get over the present state of government's policy paralysis. The very people who are eager to see India shine fast will be the most affected once the authoritarian, cronyist regime of Modi takes over. Big fish like Adani, Ambani et al will stifle the competition with monopolies, cartels, vendor lock-ins, predatory pricing, value manipulation, misplaced production priorities, baits and switches, planned obsolescences, pyramid schemes etc, shattering the dreams of many a budding entrepreneur. Prices of all goods will skyrocket while the middle class that once cheered the rise of Modi will see that they, as consumers, have been left with little or no choice at the market place.

Since Modi is known as a strong administrator, the progress of the magnates named is somewhat under check as of now. The situation that will emerge in Gujarat after he moves to New Delhi — and countrywide after he retires — will be all the more dangerous. Shedding the inhibition about politics that is otherwise a part of a businessman's natural temperament, the tycoons, who are now the country's de facto rulers, will turn into our de jure rulers.

Already, criticising these industrialists and getting away with it is tougher than panning the ruling party or opposition's leader in the media, As and when a journalist tries it, he loses his job and is forced into subsequent unemployment for years on end. This writer has had a first-hand experience of a corporate giant's effective power of coercion that it exercises on the fourth estate. In 2004-05, I had exposed the nexus between Anil Ambani's Reliance Infocomm and the then telecommunication minister Dayanidhi Maran, who, after the former was caught passing off ISD calls as local calls, made the company get away with paying a fraction of the penalty that was due. The resident editor of The Statesman, where I was employed then, constantly delayed the publication of my story. Eventually, I passed the information on to some friendly journalists working with other media houses. But the report never came out as a scoop. A senior journalist once allegedly unearthed evidence of adulteration in Reliance's Jamnagar facility. First his services were terminated by the very television media baron who had sent him, disguised as a truck driver, for the sting operation; then he couldn't find himself a job for the next almost 15 years. In comparison, speculating about Sonia Gandhi's money stashed in tax havens abroad or the ill-treatment LK Advani meted out to his estranged daughter-in-law is a cakewalk. Such wild stories have gone around not only in the social media but also in parts of the mainstream media. And no scribe has lost his or her job as a result.

The few readers who might dismiss these real-life incidents as concocted narratives may try to figure out why The Polyester Prince, a biography of Dhirubhai Ambani, is still proscribed in India.

Sir James Lancaster, commander of the first East India Company voyage in 1601
When these industry moguls rise in politics, their act of usurping power may be subtler than the evolution of the East India Company from travelling traders to conquerors of large territories of our country, but more pronounced than the transformation of the billionaires like Herbert Hoover, Al Checchi, Steve Forbes, Ross Perot, Meg Whitman and Linda McMahon into politicians in the US and Naveen Jindal, G Janardhana Reddy, Rajkumar Dhoot, Rajeev Chandrashekhar etc in this country. With puppets placed in Parliament and Legislative Assemblies, they will run amok across the country. No other outcome is plausible, as unbridled power of a few to do business invariably leads to saturation of market territories, following which business houses can sustain only by enhancing their powers through politics.

Propagandists brand the AAP as an anti-market force. Apologists of the corporate sector like Gurcharan Das try counselling us through their newspaper columns that we need not be pro-business; we just need to be pro-market. But Modi, whose economics they sing paeans to, is tilted in favour of a few business houses, not the whole market. If it were otherwise, it wouldn't be the Ambanis, Adanis, Mittals alone who would shower encomia on him; it would rather be many stars seen for the first time on the horizon of Indian entrepreneurship who would vouch for the investment-friendly environment he has created in Gujarat.

If Modi turns India's CEO, small-time businessmen cannot rise, business columnists who criticise him will lose their jobs and his partymen who dissent will meet the fate of Joshi.

Can Modi but handle infiltration and terrorism better? One can't be sure. To capture power at the Centre, the BJP feels the urge to be 'secular' no less than the Congress. So, a centuries' old yajnashala in Madhya Pradesh's Dhar district is handed over for namaz to Muslims brought in by trucks from neighbouring districts. And death sentence is sought for Maya Kodnani for a pogrom that could not have been executed without the State Government's complicity, much as the legal advisers of Modi know well that the crime of inciting mobs, no matter how grievous, will not qualify in the court as a rarest of rare case. Booking other rioters who are still going around scot free would have shown Modi's commitment to justice, but he might well have thought that demanding maximum punishment for a convict (already sentenced for life) would endear him to Muslims, which would take care of the objection of 'secularists' to his prime ministerial candidacy!

With the prospect of fair play in business gone and the hopes of Hindu society's Hindutva section dashed, what is left of the Modi appeal?

16 April 2013

Why Modi Is Not The Solution

Akshay Marathe and Mayank Gandhi

Raising hope or fear?

The Gujarat growth model, being marketed by Narendra Modi is being seen by the middle class as a solution to all the problems of the nation. We intend to understand its strengths and weaknesses and indicate a constructive alternative model of growth. This article is Part 1 of a three part series on Narendra Modi’s Gujarat model. While it cannot be denied that Gujarat has seen growth in terms of water, electricity and good roads, there are some aspects of growth that need to be analysed.

One of the argument for the Modi growth model is the legitimacy it gets due to 3 consecutive electoral victories. Congress has been ruling India for 60 years, CPM had been ruling WB for over 30 years, Lalu had won 3 terms. We do not subscribe to electoral success begetting good governance.

Historical perspective
Gujarat has seen high growth rates for the last 20 years, even before Modi came into the picture. So the high growth in recent years is a continuation of the sound growth in the past. The Chimanbhai Patel era (1990 to 1995) was one of extremely high investments. Owing to these and subsequent investments, growth rates for the period 1995-2000, were around 8.01 per cent. From 2001 to 2010, that is, under Modi’s leadership, this number has risen to 8.68 - a marginal increase of 0.67 per cent.

Gujaratis have been known to be excellent tradesmen and entrepreneurs for centuries. We concede that a business friendly atmosphere has been continued by Modi, which has resulted in this marginal growth. Fortunately for Gujaratis, there has been good rainfall and almost no drought in recent years. What must be noted though is that Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, Maharashtra, Punjab, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh have also experienced growth at comparable rates. In either period, Gujarat was not at the top (as is being made out by Modi supporters). In 1995-2000, it was at second position, and in the 2000-2010 period it was third after Uttarakhand (11.81 per cent) and Haryana (8.95 per cent). Industry has grown in Orissa and Chhattisgarh at 17.5 and 13.3 per cent respectively during 2005-09, higher than Gujarat's 12.6 per cent. Gujarat ranked sixth among major states in per capita income in 2011, with Rs 63,996, after Haryana (Rs 92,327), Maharashtra (Rs 83,471), Punjab (Rs 67,473), Tamil Nadu (Rs 72,993) and Uttarakhand (Rs 68,292).

So, was the slight acceleration in growth due to Modi’s policies as he claims or could it also have been a result of the completion of the Sardar Sarovar project, and an almost drought-free (except for Saurashtra region) ten years?

Non-inclusive growth
The 2002 riots, which were probably a reaction to the Godhra massacre, have nonetheless put a big blot on Modi’s record. At every opportunity it gets, the Congress uses the riots as its ammunition to label the BJP and Modi as ‘communal.’ The BJP then counters it by telling anyone who would listen that since 2002 there have been no riots in the state. We want to go beyond the communal angle and consider the riots from a purely security-centred perspective. For a moment if we ignore the religion of the Indians who died, a question arises: How can Modi be an ideal leader when he failed so miserably at protecting the lives of over a thousand of his subjects from rogue elements of the society? It is the State’s principal responsibility to ensure peace and protect its citizens - Mr. Modi failed in this Rajdharma (a primary duty of the government to protect all citizens, regardless of their castes or religion).

He is alleged to have encouraged, if not engineered the riots, but so far has been cleared by courts and tribunals. Coincidentally, Headlines Today, a television news channel ran a story on the riots this week. The report shows that the Modi administration neglected warnings and refused to impose a curfew in the city - “Despite the flurry of ground reports and advance warnings, no curfew was imposed in Ahmedabad till noon the next day. The BJP government supported the VHP called bandhs that, as events turned out, proved to be the pretext under which violent mobs were mobilized.” By the time curfew was imposed, the damage had been done.

The bloodshed has created lots of misgivings about the intention of the government in a significant number of the populace. Today, a large chunk of the national electorate, namely OBC (32%), SC (16.2%), ST (8.2%), Muslims (13.4%), Christians (2.3%) - Total (72.1%) of the people tend to look at him with suspicion and  distrust. They may not be willing participants in Modi’s development model as they feel insecure because of his reputation. The development model heavily favours the urban middle class.

Urban and industry bias
In the last 12 years, there has been a shift from focus on rural development towards an urban and industry bias. Land acquisition is rampant in Gujarat (as is the case in other parts of the country as well). One of the authors (Mayank Gandhi) once led a rally in Surat of over 25000 farmers near the industrialized Surat-Hazira belt.Their land had been taken away by the Government to make way for large industries owned by Reliance, Adani, ONGC, Essar etc. The farmers were given a reasonable price for their lands, but the loss of livelihood was much too severe for them. Their cattle suffered because area of grasslands in that region was reduced to less than one-fifth of the original area! So while industry benefited greatly, locals were displaced and unemployed. The smoke spewing, gas guzzling plants have destroyed the entire ecology permanently. Is this the model of development that the nation needs?

Modi has spoken at length about how he convinced the Tatas to open their plant at Sanand in Gujarat, when their West Bengal venture did not work out. He makes a case that the people of Gujarat will benefit by automobile companies setting shop in the state. It is interesting to note that the BJP lost the Sanand seat to the Congress in the 2012 election! Had this industry really benefited locals as Modi claims, would they not have voted in his favour? By providing low interest rates, cheap rentals and waiving stamp duty, the Government did persuade Tata to set up its plant, but was this in the interest of the people? No, it wasn’t. To further add to the problems faced by the locals, the state government policy of ensuring 85 per cent recruitment for locals was also waived for the project. The fact is the people are directly or indirectly paying around Rs 60,000 for each Nano sold by the Tatas - this is a criminal misuse of authority by the Government.

If one analysed the latest Gujarat election result, one could notice that in the rural areas, BJP and Cong won almost equal seats, while in tribal areas, out of 21 seats, 18 were won by Cong and 3 by BJP.

Poverty and malnutrition
While poverty has reduced in the state in general, it has done poorly in this respect when compared to other states. According to the Planning Commission, Gujarat’s rank in poverty alleviation is 11th among a list of 20 major states. In fact, the tribal population (17% of the total) in the state has actually seen an increase in poverty in the last decade. What is worrying is that Gujarat’s under-five mortality rate has stagnated and is far behind that of its peers. Child mortality is significantly higher among girls than boys and that difference hasn’t narrowed over the years. Malnutrition is very severe among Gujarat’s children and women, and the only defence that Modi could come up with was an unfortunate diversion of the issue to the dieting habits of Gujarati women. It is no surprise then that in a recent study by UNDP, Gujarat ranked 8thamong major Indian states in human development and the Planning Commission’s Human Development Index has placed Gujarat as low on the list as 18!

A factoid before we end the first section: The Sardar Sarovar Dam has been one of the key components of Modi’s growth story. During his tenure, the dam was instrumental is reaching water to distant parts of the state. However, the dam was first proposed during the Janata Party Government and work on it was continued by all subsequent governments, including Congress ones.

One conclusion that can be drawn from these facts is that the high growth has apparently benefited only a select segment of the population. This means that Modi’s Gujarat model is far less effective than it is being made out to be and shows that growth’s implicit ‘trickle down’ effect is absent in the Modi regime.



Modi is said to be one of those few politicians who do not have assets characteristic of an average Indian politician. When he filed his nomination papers for the Assembly elections of Gujarat in 2012 from Maninagar, he declared the value of his assets to be slightly over 1 crore rupees. With over 30 per cent candidates in that election being crorepatis, Modi was one of the poorer candidates in the fray. It is entirely possible that on a personal level, the Chief Minister is clean. Also, it must be said here that the lower levels of Gujarat’s government machinery, which comes in contact with the common man, is largely non-corrupt. While all this is true, it is also true that the Government of Gujarat has indulged in highly irregular deals with private companies that resulted in windfall profit for them with the state’s population gaining absolutely nothing from it!

The Modi government has been relatively free from allegations of corruption, so the public perception is that he is non-corrupt. The reason corruption scams in the Modi government are not exposed as much is the nature of the Opposition. The Congress opposition cannot raise a voice as the people who have benefited from the corruption are close to the Congress leadership as well.

BJP-Congress bonhomie in corruption

(Note: This information is sourced from the Aam Aadmi Party website, which is based on CAG reports, quoted later in the article.)

Gujarat State petroleum Corporation (GSPC) is an oil and gas exploration company of Gujarat Government. GSPC acquired gas blocks in KG Basin in August 2002. According to government’s own estimates, the gas fields allocated to GSPC were worth $20 billion.
Modi government entered into production sharing agreements with Geo Global and Jubilant Enpro Pvt. Ltd. Modi gave away 10% of participating interest to each of these two companies completely free of cost. In turn, Geo Global was supposed to provide technical assistance. The first question is – how were these two companies identified? According to records, it was not through any competitive bidding. These two companies were arbitrarily chosen and simply given away the participating interests in these gas fields free of cost.

The value of the benefits can be ascertained based on a deal between British Petroleum and Reliance around the same time. The value of this “gift” given by the Modi Government comes out to around Rs 10,000 crores to each of the two companies. What is also important to note is the ownership of these two companies. Geo Global, is owned by a controversial Canadian scientist Jean Paul Roy, on whom the Economic Times had written an article in December last year, in which the paper has raised questions about GSPC, GeoGlobal and Narendra Modi himself.

Jubilant Enpro Pvt. Ltd is owned by Shyam Sunder Bhartia, who is husband of Mrs Shobhana Bhartia, Chairperson and Editorial Director of Hindustan Times Group, a pro-Congress media house. Mrs Shobhana Bhartia was nominated to the Rajya Sabha by the Congress party. She has been known to be extremely close to the Gandhi family. Is it any wonder the Congress has kept mum about this scam in the Modi Government?

When Arvind Kejriwal, Convener of the Aam Aadmi Party had exposed corruption in Haryana (the Robert Vadra dealings), the Govt entity involved had been quick to respond to allegations (although, their refutations were hardly convincing). The problem with Modi is that he doesn’t even acknowledge his detractors. He treats them as if they do not exist. Not just has his Government not responded to the allegations made by AAP, but he has also claimed in his speeches that ‘there isn’t a single allegation of corruption against the Gujarat Government.’ The arrogance and indifference of an elected representative to valid questions is shocking.

Here is an excerpt of a TOI article on the GSPC corruption issue :

The Comptroller and Auditor General reports for 2009-10 and 2010-11, placed before the Gujarat assembly on the last day of the budget session on Friday, tore into the Narendra Modi government on the issue of corruption by pointing out irregularities causing a cumulative loss of nearly Rs 17,000 crore. The villain of the piece turned out to be state-owned public sector undertaking (PSU), Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation (GSPC), which showed irregularities leading to losses of up to Rs 12,400 crore.
The reports slam the handling of finances by the Gujarat government, saying there were regular unspent "excesses" left in all departments over the last four years, and that there were "last minute fund releases and issuance of re-appropriation/surrender orders at the fag end, particularly on the last day of the year".
Gujarat Lokayukta

What makes Modi just-another-politician is his Government’s Lokayukta Act. The Assembly passed the Gujarat Lokayukta Aayog Bill, 2013, which was criticised by all sections of the media and all anti-corruption activists as a weak and ineffective piece of legislation. The Act has certain provisions, which are not just ineffective, but they also encourage corruption:

  • The new law empowers the Modi government to choose its own Lokayukta to inquire against the chief minister and his cabinet. This violates the basic principle of natural justice that no man can choose a judge in his own case.
  • The annual report of the Lokayukta will be laid before the legislative assembly, but shall not be open to debate in the House.
  • The State government has the power to exclude complaints against certain classes of functionaries. That means that by the notification, the chief minister or cabinet can be excluded from the purview of the Lokayukta.
While BJP supported Anna Hazare's demand for a Jan Lokpal Law in 2011, the Modi Government has been preventing appointment of a Lokayukta in the state for the last ten years!

Dictatorial style of functioning

There are three cases that come to mind when one thinks of Modi’s regime : Haren Pandya, Sanjiv Bhatt and Sanjay Joshi. Haren Pandya, Home Minister of Gujarat during the 2002 riots and Sanjiv Bhatt, an IPS officer, were the two ‘moles’ in Modi’s team who claimed to know exactly what happened at a meeting at Modi’s residence during the 2002 riots. Today, Haren Pandya is dead and Sanjiv Bhatt is being hounded by the Gujarat Government for a case of custodial death that took place in 1990. Sanjay Joshi was the RSS functionary in Gujarat who rivalled Modi’s popularity and clout, back in the 1990s. Today, he has been forced to resign from the National Executive of the BJP and has been sidelined completely.

The fate of these three individuals brings out Modi’s ruthless attitude towards rivals and opposition. The TOI article quoted above also had these lines in it:

With all but four Congress MLAs suspended from the House, there could be no debate on the damning CAG reports. As soon as the house began functioning on Friday, MLAs Rajendrasinh Parmar, Paranjayadityasinhji Parmar, Jodhaji Thakore and Amit Chavda sought discussion on CAG report, which the speaker Ganpar Vasava disallowed.
The quartet rushed to the well carrying banners on CAG. They were suspended, quite predictably, and escorted out by the security staff.

Sanjiv Bhatt, IPS officer

BJP MPs keep entering the well of the Parliament to protest the UPA’s disgusting corruption scams. When Congress MLAs do it in the Gujarat Assembly, they are suspended. Not only is this a clear example of double standards, but it is also a sample of Modi’s dictatorial style of functioning. Opposition of any kind is not allowed to survive for long in Modi’s Gujarat. In many ways, he does remind one of the Emergency period Indira Gandhi. In this day and age, it is impossible to overturn democracy as brazenly as Indira Gandhi did in the 1970s, but does Modi have those tendencies? Absolutely.

On the one hand, in Karnataka, Modi talks of the Congress giving Assembly election tickets to criminals and on the other, he welcomes gun-toting MP from Gujarat, Vitthal Radadiya with open arms. How is he any different from the average Indian politician, who says one thing and does another?

On this note, we end Part 2 of our series on the Modi growth model. In the next and final part, we will talk about Modi’s branding campaigns and the complete centralisation of decision-making.

Disclaimer: We have used the Sanjiv Bhatt example only to illustrate how Modi vindictively targets anyone who tries to oppose him. We do not vouch for his statements and nor do we claim he is honest. In fact, recently the Gujarat riots case SIT has called Bhatt a manipulator and not a witness.

Finally on the Modi myth, we would like to make some points why Modi is not THE Solution for India. We believe that AAP is a much better solution for the country. Some of the major values that we believe in:

Electoral System:
All sensible people understand that Electoral system is the source of bad governance and corruption. Every candidate necessarily has to spend  crores of black money for getting elected. For that, they need to gather illegal funds. These funds have to collected / made by compulsorily indulging in corruption and hand-in-glove relationship with all arms of government like bureaucracy, judiciary, media and other vested interest groups  like contractors, industrialists and hoarders etc. So, it is virtually impossible to be completely honest and survive in politics with the present electoral system. To gather large votes, criminals are nurtured and caste and religion based politics is indulged in. This electoral system needs to change.

Have you seen Modi talk or behave differently? Doesn't he put candidates based on caste and religion? Don't  BJP candidates in Gujarat spend black money in large quantities? Did Modi use gundas and criminals during the elections? Hasnt a known goon called Radadiya taken in the party recently. So, how can we expect anything drastically different?

Today, once someone gets elected, he forgets his voters and takes all guidance and orders from his party and its high command. Fortunately, BJP has lesser high command culture than Congress. We believe that a bottom-up process is much better in a country of the size of 121 crore people. Gandhiji used to talk about power to the people, which we believe in. Decisions should be taken at the lowest level. Decisions about village should be taken at gram sabha level, about local urban levels at mohalla level, about talukas at their level etc. This is our concept of Swaraj or decentralized governance.

Modi and 5 of his senior ministers have centralized all power with themselves. Most of the decisions go right up. Can we think of a Gandhi-like decentralized people oriented democracy under Modi?

A strong anti-corruption law is necessary at the National and state level to apprehend and punish corrupt people called Lokpal with provisions that would deter corrupt practices.

Gujarat was forced to have a Lok ayukta by the SC. And the Gujarat Lokayukta is a complete farce, with all controls vested with the government. Can we expect Modi to make strong anti-corruption laws if he becomes PM? Absolutely no chance.

Humility, decency :
We believe that some of the qualities of a leader should be decisiveness coupled with humility, decency and good human values.

Gujarat spends 550 crores a year on branding Modi with 3 change of clothes-a-day and different poses. An arrogance, vengefulness and running-away-from-uncomfortable debates has characterised his behaviour. While he might be decisive, so was Indira Gandhi. And, we know what a disaster that was for the nation.

Status Quo:
Status quo in which 40 crore Indians sleep hungry is not acceptable. We need a "total revolution" with systemic changes with judicial, governance, administrative and political reforms.

Modi is more-of-the-same. Gujarat is growing, though slower than before. The same systems, the same opaqueness, the same arrogance of the ruler is what is indicated.

My case, is that if we want the same system, the same governance model that has messed up this nation, then one can choose between Congress and BJP and Modi could be your choice.
I want the India of my dreams. I do not wish to choose the lesser evil. I do not want evil, ruling me. India can wait no more!

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Surajit Dasgupta treats no individual, organisation or institution as a holy cow.