In my earlier article, I had put together an exhaustive series of achievements of the Narendra Modi Govt, the phenomenal work that has been done, which is transforming the lives of the people. I have been sharing this information on all social media platforms for quite some time now. However, I must make a candid admission that the raging ongoing debate on rising fuel prices had made me a little nervous and shook my confidence. Some of my highly learned friends had expressed their fears regarding the price hike and it’s impact on re-election of Narendra Modi as PM. There was no way I could take their opinions lightly. We had lengthy debates, for and against the hike. The arguments from both sides were so convincing that it left me utterly confused, even more nervous. But a chance visit by my old domestic help today morning changed my perspective completely and removed all the doubts that had crept into my mind related to this issue in the past one week.
She had worked in our house for nearly 22 years. Six months back she got a heart attack but survived because of timely medical aid. Doctor advised her to take complete bed rest for at least 3 months and other precautions. Due to this reason she had to discontinue her work. Today morning when she came up to my room unannounced, I was surprised and delighted to see her. We chatted for nearly two hours. During the course of our conversation, what she told me was a revelation for me. She gave me a mind blowing account of what the Government was doing. Every member in her family had received health insurance cover of Rs 3 lakhs and a card which could be used in case of hospitalisation and payment of bills. In her locality everyone has received it.
Point of significance here is that this is not a story from some rural part of India. This is from an urban city. She told me that even in her village people are getting the health insurance cover. Special teams have been formed and assigned the task of going door to door, inform the people about the schemes, collect documents from them and see to it that they receive the card, cylinder, other benefits etc. For starting small ventures, one has to just go to the Govt office and collect information about all the schemes. Whichever business one wishes to start, the Govt gives you loan along with equipments. Her daughter wanted to start a small beauty parlour. She filled up the form and submitted it along with her documents. Within 6 months she got the money and beauty parlour equipment. Her brother got his own taxi in the same way. Housewives from economically backward families get sewing machines free of cost. My other domestic help had already told me that in his village everyone has constructed the toilets and they got the money in advance from the Govt. People have received Rs 1.5 lakhs for construction/repair of house under Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojna. This money is given in three installments and it’s directly credited into their bank accounts. LPG connections have been given free of cost to everyone. Girls get free bicycles, books to go to school.
This brings me to the point I started with – fuel price hike. I am quite sure that it is not going to have any impact on 2019 LS elections. One thing is absolutely clear that Mr. Modi believes in winning elections through economic benefits route i.e DEVELOPMENT and not by doles, subsidies, freebies etc. Demand of petrol and diesel is exponentially increasing, showing about 5 to 10% increase every year. Keeping the prices unchanged gives higher revenue to the government which is used for social development schemes like Ayushman Bharat, Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojna, Mudra Yojna, Ujjwala revolution, Swachh Bharat mission etc, which are landmark initiatives.
We should try to understand that pump outlet price depends on global crude price, exchange rate and local taxes. Reductions through GST or by direct subsidy would amount to loss to the nation. UPA had forced oil companies not to raise prices and yet go on paying taxes to state and central Govt. To fulfill the shortfall, they issued huge IOUs to the tune of over Rs. 200,000/- to oil companies, countries like Iran, who were in a tough position due to sanctions. This information is there in the public domain. Read this superlative piece on petroleum prices, the mess created by UPA.
All those who are cribbing about the hike, why don’t they think about the huge savings which have come from prices falling in all other commodities, goods and services!
High fuel prices don’t affect the rich. They are feeling the heat for different reasons though. Being forced to sell prized assets to repay their ballooning debts. This is a first. Full credit to the Government for it.
The Prime Minister has a clear vision about what he wants to do for the country, for us and for the future generations. Therefore, our support to him should be unflinching. We should not get fooled by promises of reservations etc that some selfish politicians are deceiving us with. Their only agenda is to see the back of him at any cost. Do we want them to come back? We all know he has been causing sleepless nights to those involved in corruption, black money, hoarding, anti-social activities etc. Instead of blaming him for fuel price hike and asking for reduction, I urge everyone to extend their support to him in his fight against terrorism, corruption, poverty in his efforts for development.
Lastly, I also want to make an earnest plea to the government to create awareness about the work that is being done at such a massive scale. It has to be conveyed to the people as majority of them are not even aware of it. There is a serious lack of communication from the Govt in this regard. Information and broadcasting Minister could be given the responsibility of telling the people about these humongous achievements through REGULAR press briefings, advertisements in print Media, hoardings etc. Interviews with the beneficiaries of these schemes should be aired on TV. Talking about them in election rallies is pointless, just rhetoric. These are sentiments echoed by all well wishers of the Govt. I fervently hope that these are taken into account.
The journey is long and arduous but let’s all be part of it and contribute in whatever way we can for a better Bharat.