In the most categorical signal to translate his campaign rhetoric into governance, the President’s speech at the joint sitting of the Houses carried almost all promises made in the BJP manifesto and Narendra Modi’s campaign.
Given that Modi had comprehensively outlined his development model during his address at the BJP’s national council meet in January this year, the President’s speech on Monday echoed his “Eight-point Development Model”.
The President’s speech reiterated most of the issues addressed in the eight-point model, except the price stabilisation fund, while emphasising agri-infrastructure and agro-technology for the agriculture sector.
“The President’s address clearly shows that Shri @narendramodi led NDA govt’s agenda is completely in line with it’s election campaign,” BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain tweeted.
Modi also indicated that he would address the Achilles’ heel of the UPA — allocation of natural resources.
In a signal that the PM is keen to address rent-seeking in regulatory clearances, the President’s speech promised that “environment and forest clearance systems will be made more predictable, transparent and time-bound” to weed out the scope for rent-seeking.
As for land acquisition related troubles adversely impacting industrial activity, the President’s speech promised a “national land use policy which will facilitate scientific identification of non-cultivable land and its strategic development” to avoid irritants in industrial activity.
Given that Modi’s promise of decisive government had raised hopes in the industry, the President’s speech sought to assert Modi’s promise of non-adversarial predictable and transparent policy environment.
“My government will create a policy environment which is predictable, transparent and fair. It will embark on rationalisation and simplification of the tax regime to make it non-adversarial and conducive to investment, enterprise and growth. My government will make every effort to introduce the GST while addressing the concerns of states. Reforms will be undertaken to enhance the ease of doing business. My government will follow a policy of encouraging investments, including through FDI, which will be allowed in sectors that help create jobs and assets,” Mukherjee said in his speech.