Promising “good governance”, BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi on Sunday unveiled his “vision” for the country, which appears set to be the blueprint for his party’s manifesto for the Lok Sabha elections.
“It has been too much of Act, Act, Act. The time is for action. More than doles, we need delivery. Good governance is more than doles and includes development and delivery,” said Modi, addressing the BJP National Council meeting.
“The rich can always buy the government, but good governance is necessary for the poor. It is the poor who will suffer the most in the absence of good governance… The country does not need a ruler, it needs a servant,” he said.
He also targeted the Congress for not declaring its prime ministerial candidate. “I see a human angle behind this decision. When defeat is imminent, which mother will sacrifice her son politically? The heart of a mother (Sonia Gandhi) decided to protect her son (Rahul Gandhi),” he said.
”The 2014 elections are not only for a change of guard, but also to meet the aspirations of the people. While the Congress is struggling to save the party, we are working to save the country,” said Modi.
He said his seven issues of focus — “family-based value system”, agriculture and villages, women empowerment, protection of “jal, jungle aur jameen, youth, democracy and knowledge — are like the colours of the rainbow. His desciption came in for praise from L K Advani, who suggested that party president Rajnath Singh should get it enshrined in the BJP’s vision document.
Reaching out to regional parties like the AIADMK, TMC and BJD, Modi asserted his commitment to honour “regional aspirations”. “I am a Chief Minister who has worked under the Vajpayee-led NDA regime as well as the hostile regime in Delhi now. I understand the significance of the federal structure. The BJP government will empower the federal structure. I promise to change the current situation for the better,” he said, assuring “regionally balanced development” to accommodate the aspirations of states like Bihar, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh and the Northeast.
For the farm and food sector, Modi outlined a “Price Stabilisation Fund” and creation of a unified “National Agricultural Market” where farmers will not be “exploited” but prices will be kept in “check” with special courts to prosecute black marketeers. He emphasised the need to enhance agricultural productivity, develop wasteland, interlink rivers and promote animal husbandry.
“BJP can stop price rise,” he asserted, as he promised to bring back the alleged black money stashed abroad. He also outlined his plan to curb unemployment by ensuring skill development of the youth.
On the education front, Modi said he favoured setting up IITs, IIMs and AIIMS in each state. He advocated the need to leverage “talent, tradition, tourism, trade and technology” to promote Brand India abroad.
Calling for world class infrastructure in sectors like rail, road, water, gas grid, optical fibre network among others, he floated the idea of a “Golden Quadrilateral of bullet trains”.
Indicating his thrust towards urbanisation, he said, “Why can’t we have 100 walk-to-work cities, smart cities, hill cities, sport cities or specialised cities. We should also develop the twin city and satellite city concepts.”