Saturday, October 13, 2007

Who will address 5 Most Impotant Issues for Election 2009 - My VOTE goes for BJP/NDA

To choose your 5 most important issues for Elections-2009 please go to - Change India has access and has put-in resurces to work with and make these issues the agenda of 2 national parties - BJP and Congress.

My 5 most important issues for Elections-2009 are Economy, Terrorism, Rural Poverty, Infrastructure & Reforms.

Economy -
UPA inherited a boom economy from NDA and all the hard work and reforms during NDA regime yielded 4 years of unprecedented economic growth. UPA did not make use of this unprecedented opportunity to reduce revenue and fiscal deficits, create a safety net for unorganized sector and given a thrust to infrastructure.

Unfortunately none of this was done. Now we are in an unprecedented global economic slowdown with fiscal deficit reaching around 12% of GDP (Center & States Combined) and we have no money left to pump prime the economy without causing a debt trap. UPA has completely mismanaged the economy and wasted the golden opportunity it had.

Terrorism/Border Security-
UPA's record on terrorism and border security has been a disaster and we need not say much about this area. Intelligence agencies have become puppets in the hands of politicians to spy on opponents, defense agencies do not act on intelligence inputs, no one is held accountable (I have not hard of any official being fired or suspended post 26/11, of course Home Minister was a non-entity anyway) and weak laws have made it impossible to punish terrorists.

Rural Poverty -
NREGA scheme, a good initiative has failed miserably with only 16 days of actual work being provided where money was spent for 100 days worth of work. This is as per the CAG report - a Government of India oversight institution. NREGA anyway is just a temporary measure to give rural poor some work of digging some pits and ponds, just to keep them alive. No effective steps have been taken by UPA to revive rural economy to provide long term sustainable employment and non-agri income generation opportunities in rural India.

Infrastructure -
NDA had visionary infra initiatives of Golden Quadrilateral and NHDP programs in road sector. Telecom reforms, airport and port privatization were the most visible infra initiatives of NDA.

UPA slowed all these programs. GQ is still incomplete. In fact a 'very capable' Minister of Surface Transport has changed 5 Chairmen of NHAI in last 2 years as they did not (could not) comply, since NDA had drafted NHAI act, which does not allow the minister to do what he feels like (?), so he tried changing Chairmen and when that also did not work, he just stopped the work.

Compare this with Mr. Khanduri (NDA Minister), the cleanest politicin you will ever come across and a task master. He was Mr. Vajpayee's choice.

We all know what UPA ministers have done in Telecom. Selling precious GSM spectrum at throw away prices to their favorite companies. 3G is still a dream.

JNNURM was a good initiative to improve urban infrastructure, but here again UPA miserably failed in delivery. No effective oversight mechanism was put in place.

Political/Economic/Judicial Reforms -
UPA has not been able to carry out any reforms, economic or political. They blamed left for economic reforms but there was no desire to do anything on political reforms either. Congress's own leader Mr. Veerappa Moily has drafted a wonderful report on administrative and political reforms but it just remains that, a report.

Judicial reforms are a crying need. Crores of court cases are pending, judges have come under suspicion and we have executive and judiciary clashing so very often. This is not a healthy situation. No party or coalition has spoken openly about this, but we must address this issue.

So I give my VOTE to BJP/NDA for this election.

Mr. Advani is the most experienced leader in the country today. He is simple, approachable and is willing to listen. He has grass root understanding of the country, acquired over 70 years of political activities. He has visited and interacted with the people from every nook and corner of the country to understand our nation of great complexity and diversity.

All BJP/NDA Chief Ministers (Gujarat, MP, Orissa, Bihar, Chattisgrah, Uttarakhand & Rajasthan) have done great development work with good governance in their respective states and have got re-elected (except Rajasthan where in-fighting let BJP down).

BJP has internal democracy where even Mr. Advani can be questioned. There is no high command culture and there is no sycophancy. You don't need to be loyal to a family to be recognized nor do you have to have a fancy surname to become a leader.

Though chaotic at times (all democracies are chaotic as all are allowed to express their opinion), BJP/NDA had done a great job during their 5 year tenure from 1999-2004. They brought about visionary ideas (GQ, Privatization, PGSY, River Linking, Telecom & Insurance Reforms) and implemented them with vigor and sincerity. They lost in 2004 because of their city centric election campaign and poor electoral alliances.

So for me, it is BJP/NDA this time.