Modi’s rise to power as Prime Minister in 2014 came with great expectations of economic reforms. The government has brought several changes in the economic environment ,including introducing a transformational bankruptcy law and pushing through the Goods and Services Tax.
The quality of India’s economic data in, and gross domestic product (GDP), has come in for questioning in recent months. Between 2009-10 and 2013-14, the period during which Manmohan Singh was the prime minister, the Indian economy grew by 6.7% per year. Between 2014-15 and 2018-19, the Indian economy is supposed to have grown at 7.5% per year. Narendra Modi has been prime minister during this period. Hence , the economic growth during Modi years has been faster.
In his first term, the Modi government, embarked on a mission to build toilets for every household in India and announced by the end of its term earlier in 2019 and around 90 million of them had been built.
Also around 80 million gas cylinders were handed out to help women, especially in rural India, escape indoor air pollution,which kills more than four million each year around the world and more than 350 million LED bulbs were distributed.
Around 100 million people have received e-cards that would help them access cashless treatment scheme under the Ayushman Bharat, Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana, the national health insurance scheme.
To enable the efficient delivery of these goods and services, the state has pushed the adoption of the Aadhar platform for identity verification and the system has since registered about 90 per cent of Indian citizens.
The ease of doing business in India has also improved significantly over the past several years, with Modi’s government rolling out a series of major reforms that made it easier for firms to get construction permits, pay taxes and trade across borders. In fact, India has risen 65 places in the World Bank’s rankings of the ease of doing business since 2014.
Modi’s government also managed to end some fuel subsidies and passed a new insolvency and bankruptcy code for firms, which replaced a web of archaic laws. Furthermore, it raised caps on foreign investment in sectors like defense and insurance, and tried to court foreign direct investment.
In 2014, many hoped the Modi administration would be able to implement the much-needed, yet difficult, economic reforms, including overhauling the labor market and streamlining land acquisition policies and Modi government has done it all.
Boosting those hopes further was Modi’s record as chief minister of Gujarat. While governing the state, Modi cultivated his image as a business-friendly administrator, cutting bureaucratic red tape, cracking down on corruption and offering land to the private sector at concessional rates.
Although, certain key reforms,remain pending including,a game-changing land reform law. Some early signs of building consensus for land reform were stalled early in his first term as Prime Minister, following criticisms by the opposition that the government’s proposal was anti-poor.
The other long-pending task of labour reform is also impeded and is unlikely to see the light of day anytime soon. The government has been hesitant to address issues of land acquisition, or labour because they often become stalled in political protests.
However, Modi’s administration inherited an economy that was growing at the slowest pace in a decade, with GDP expansion plummeting to around 4-5% from the near double-digit growth rates several years ago.
Now, under Modi’s leadership, India has emerged as the fastest-growing major economy in the world, with its economic output expanding by 7% plus annually.