The NDA Government in last Five years have undertaken a lot of Socio- Economic Reforms, both big and small, that has not only brought convenience to the people of India and made life easier than ever before but has also provided a much needed boost for India to become a super economic power.
Other than making life simpler, these reforms have certainly eliminated human intervention and thus source of corruption from a lot of areas. These reforms have also broken the power centres which were the epicentre of corruption in India.
Best Things Government Has done For us in 5 Years
Here is a quick review of Governments Small reforms which are less remembered or went unnoticed. But they have certainly made your life easier, hassle free and less corrupt.
1) Self Attestation
One of the very first reform undertaken by the Modi led NDA Government as early as in August 2014, was to abolish the requirement of True Copy, Affidavit and Notarisation of documents. As its promise to provide a Citizen centric administration, Government had asked all its departments and state governments to accept Self Attested documents for all matters related to public administration. The British requirement of getting documents attested by a Gazetted officer or Notary was not only exploitative but too expensive for a common man.
2) Bank Account for all
Another major reform announced on 15th August 2014 by the Prime Minister himself was of free and easy to open bank account for all, in India. As part of Government’s financial inclusion program Aadhar linked Jan Dhan accounts were made available for all at zero balance and relaxed KYC norms. This made possible for the poorest of poor in India to now get a bank account, direct transfer of benefit like subsidy, pension, allowances in their accounts, security of their income and ease of withdrawing any time. Surprisingly 60 percent of Indians were deprived of banking till 2014. This not only affected their economic growth but also led to huge cash economy, tax evasions and restricted the capacity of banking system to create new money.
3) Digital Payment
As part of its commitment to enable resourceful and corruption free services to the people of India, Modi Government in 2015 launched Digital India campaign. Digital payments through mobile wallets, UPI, POS, Online banking not only made life much easier and simple, but also created a host of employment and earning avenues. On one hand, employment in the field of Internet technology (both software and hardware) increased substantially, on the other hand small traders, transporters, vendors and services providers in unorganised sector saw their sales and business rising fast. With modes of payment on their finger tip consumer’s across age groups today have more power and sellers have more business. Digital payment is an effort to create cash less and corruption less economy.
4) Laws Repealed
In 2015, Modi led NDA Government enacted Repealing and Amending Act to abolish over 1400 obsolete and redundant laws. Most of these acts and laws were enacted under British rule but none of the previous Government’s in independent India ever attempted to repeal these antiquated laws. Many times these laws became a tool in the hand of Police and Judiciary to harass people and created space for corruption. It just took a parliamentary procedure to make country secede from these redundant laws.
5) Tax Payment Convenience
There were times in India when Tax officers were perceived as villains, they use to harass, exploit and force corruption. This was also a reason why many evaded taxes in India, as nobody wanted to take panga with the Tax officers. But in 2019 the Income tax department accepted 99.54 percent of returns filed by tax payers ‘as it is’. No query was generated. Wherever applicable, even refunds were processed within a month of filing of returns. NDA Government has completely removed human intervention from the process of collecting taxes. With the integration of Bank accounts, PAN card, Aadhar and GSTN, it has become possible to get compiled data of income at one source. This has once again reduced the scope of tax evasion and corruption in collection of taxes. On the contrary the income tax collections have doubled from Rs 6.38 lakh crore in 2013-14 to Rs 12 lakh crore in 2018-19. The number of returns filed have also increased from 3.79 crore to 6.85 crore showing 80 percent rise.
6) Swachh Bharat and Toilets
One of the most ambitious projects of Modi Government is Swachh Bharat Mission, announced in 2014 and implemented in a mission mode to achieve 100 percent target by 2019. Enabling toilets to each household was the most important facet of the Swachh Bharat. Making each village and state open defection free has been a significant outcome of the mission. Seems to be a small and easy mission but was actually not, as it was difficult for a government to change people’s mindset and habits. Money was not the only resource required to achieve this target thus celebrities to common man everyone was made swachhagrahis i.e. ambassadors of cleanness and kachrewala was made to known as safaiwala.
7) LPG Cooking Gas for all
Till 2014, only 13 cr households had LPG connection that too was available after months and years of waiting, paying bribes to the dealer, incurring huge loss to Government in subsidy theft and inadequate supply of monthly cylinder. Rural households were completely deprived of LPG and were left to using firewood and dung cakes, resulting, ill health of rural women. In 2015, Prime Minister Modi appealed to the well to do households to voluntarily surrender LPG subsidy, he promised to use this money to provide free LPG to rural poor. In 2016, Government launched Ujjwala Yojana a scheme to provide free LPG gas cylinder to all poor households in rural India but later extended to urban poor too. Today 80 percent of households in India have LPG connections; almost all poor households have free connections. All connections are linked to Aadhar and bank accounts, subsidy as applicable is directly transferred to the beneficiaries’ bank account, and cylinder booking is fully online and processed digitally, eliminating scope of corruption at dealers end.
8) e-tendering and Government –e marketplace
In its efforts to eliminate corruption from Government’s procurement and contracting business, NDA government has made it compulsory for all its departments and organisations to enable online procurement of goods and services through e-marketplace. It provides tools for tendering, bidding, auctions etc in a transparent and efficient manner on its specially developed website. In most of the cases the contract is awarded to the best bidder selected digitally by the system without any human intervention.
Established in 2016, National Agriculture Market or e NAM is online trading platform for agriculture goods in India. All APMC markets are integrated through e NAM, farmer from one state becomes aware of demand, supply and price of its produce in another market. This has removed the middlemen and saved farmers from getting exploited by the APMC officers. This is also one of the important reasons for increase in supply of agricultural goods in markets, leading fall in their prices and control of food inflation in India during last few years.
10) Abolishing Planning Commission
Last, but one of the first reforms taken by Modi led NDA Government was to abolish the control of Planning Commission over deciding matters related to Socio-Economic relevance and its monopoly over disbursement of resources to the State governments. Modi replaced Planning Commission with Niti Aayog, a think tank, whose role is only to advice the Government. Planning Commission’s decisions were based on a Five Year Plan for the country, while the World is moving fast and decisions are to be taken even faster. Planning Commission had become a supreme power centre and left the State governments begging for more resources than planned for them. Niti Aayog is participatory, with all State governments as its members and are considered partners in India’s growth.
These are just few of the small reforms brought in by the NDA Government in last five years of his tenure. Knowingly or unknowingly they have changed our lifestyles and the way we perceive.