INDIA THIRSTING FOR GOOD GOVERNANCE, GOOD DECISIONS

In the same way that stories spread in olden times about how Kings and Emperors ventured out in disguise to learn about the situation, conditions, circumstances of their subjects, stories similar to those are nowadays doing the rounds of the corridors in Delhi’s North Block and South Block. These stories are being told not only in connection to Prime Minister Narendra Modi improving the administration, but also the way of working of the Cabinet. We are keeping some of those stories before you.
The first story is from the time of Narendra Modi coming to Delhi from Gujarat. India’s renowned businessman, Mukesh Ambani, went to Narendra Modi and during talks with Narendra Modi said that he wanted to acquire a Rs. 1200 crore company and in that he wanted his help. The then Chief Minister Narendra Modi lifted up his eyes, looked at Mukesh Ambani and said ‘Mukesh bhai (brother), I was thinking that you wanted to make a Rs. 10,000 crore investment in Gujarat and had therefore come to meet me. Where are you talking about acquisition of this Rs. 1000-1200 crore company. Talk about yourself, don’t raise a finger against someone else’. It was obvious that Mukesh Ambani returned from there empty handed.
The second incident also concerns Mukesh Ambani. Narendra Modi became the Prime Minister. He called his Minister Dharmendra Pradhan for a meeting and said to him that you are meeting Mukesh Ambani quite a lot and are going to his place to have lunch. Dharmendra Pradhan must have said that this had to be discussed, that had to be discussed. Narendra Modi said that if you had to talk, you could have called Mukesh Ambani to your office, what is the need to go to his place? ‘Anyway, you can go, there is a file lying on your table for your signature’. When Dharmendra Pradhan returned to his office, there was a file lying on his table for his signature. It was a file imposing a fine of 579 million dollars on Mukesh Ambani. Dharmendra Pradhan had to sign that file and a fine of 579 million dollars was imposed on Mukesh Ambani.

Today, we are requesting the Prime Minister of the country that now, when Independence Day has passed, he has unfurled the flag above the Red Fort, he should move forward in the direction of a really clean and functional administration and should assure the country that the Government which is working now is different from previous Governments… that it is its resolution that it will devote the entire administration to bringing improvements in people’s lives.

The third story linked to Narendra Modi that is doing the rounds concerns Rajnath Singh. He called for Rajnath Singh to come and meet him. Exactly 15 minutes before that he called Rajnath Singh’s son Pankaj Singh to come and meet him. Pankaj Singh, bouquet in hand, very happily went to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He was made to wait for 15 minutes by Narendra Modi, by which time Rajnath Singh also reached to meet him. Narendra Modi said to Pankaj Singh that I have deliberately called your father. Pankaj Singh tried to present the bouquet of flowers he had brought, but Narendra Modi did not accept the bouquet of flowers. He merely said, ‘the person from whom you took money the day before, return his money to him today itself’. Pankaj Singh left the Prime Minister’s Office with his head bowed. After this, the Prime Minister said to Rajnath Singh, ‘this information is not in the corridors of power’.
The fourth story revolves round Shri Ram Vilas, that Ram Vilas Paswan left Delhi for Patna and with him went a lot of people in the train. At Tundla Narendra Modi got to know about it. At Tundla station, police and Railway officials surrounded the train and got those who did not have valid tickets for the journey to disembark from the train.
These stories connected to Narendra Modi are adding link after link to themselves. MPs have to give details of income/property. MPs say that those who have become Ministers, their income/expenditure/ property details is all right, but we have not even become Ministers. This being so, if we give to Narendra Modi details of the income/property of wife, son, parents and brothers and sisters, we come under the scanner of questions and in future it can become an obstacle for us to reach the Cabinet or any post of responsibility. The appointment of the private secretaries of several Ministers was stopped by Narendra Modi’s office before they could be appointed. A CBI investigation was going on against someone, there were other kinds of charges on someone. In these, the most questions were related to Uttar Pradesh and Bihar bureaucrats, on whom Narendra Modi kept strict watch.
Narendra Modi is giving indications of running the functioning of his Government in a smooth manner. He said in Leh, ‘I will not eat (money), neither will I let it be eaten’. Narendra Modi is aware that at every level in the country, terrible corruption is showing its effect. Perhaps this is why he had to say that. But by merely ‘saying’, neither can there be smooth functioning nor can it stop corruption. Therefore, it is necessary that all decisions are monitored by cameras and it should be declared that after three years all these recordings can be made public or that after three years, if someone wants to see the recording of why a particular decision was taken and on the basis of what logic it was taken, then it can be seen through the Right to Information (RTI). This is the first decision which will compel decision-making persons, whether they are Ministers or Secretary level officers, to take the right decision. This is not a restriction, it should become a rule, so that the people of the country can find out what were the arguments or logic behind decisions taken in their context, from which they benefited or had to suffer harm or damage.
If all these stories relating to Narendra Modi are correct, they should be welcomed. If these stories are not correct, then these stories should be correct. In the corridors of South and North Block it is fast circulating that every Minister and every big officer is under the Intelligence Bureau’s watch. The question is also over the working system of the Intelligence Bureau, because during the last 15-20 years all our Intelligence agencies have been hit by paralysis and to get a correct report from them is almost impossible. But if they begin to be used for Ministers and Secretaries, then they will become engaged in this work, leaving aside other work, in which preventing and stopping terrorism is the major responsibility, and a new kind of corruption will be created. That is why it is important that Prime Minister Narendra Modi gives strict guidelines to his Ministers and Secretaries that no spying is being done on them, but if anyone is found involved in any kind of irregularity and is caught, then no compassion will be shown.
This country is truly thirsting for good governance and good decisions. We have nothing to do with Narendra Modi’s ideology. Today, we are requesting the Prime Minister of the country that now, when Independence Day has passed, he has unfurled the flag above the Red Fort, he should move forward in the direction of a really clean and functional administration and should assure the country that the Government which is working now is different from previous Governments. This Government will put a stress on ideology when it will, but it is its resolution that it will devote the entire administration to bringing improvements in people’s lives. Will Prime Minister Narendra Modi be able to assure the general public, the poor, the middle-class along with classes as a whole that now, the Government will work less for vested interests, in a more conscious, heedful manner so that change comes into the lives of the people. This is the hope. Let us see what happens till 15 August next year.

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