On May 26, the Narendra Modi government, which was voted to power last year on the back of a commanding majority, will complete one year in office. As leader of the government, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has certainly showed a marked shift in leadership and style of governance compared to the earlier UPA regime but there are areas such as health and education where the administration is yet to show sustained progress. Electorally, 2014 may have been a successful year with victories in Maharashtra, Haryana, Jharkhand and Jammu and Kashmir, but 2015 gave a rude shock to the ruling BJP with a humiliating defeat in the national capital of Delhi.
INTERACTIVE TIMELINE: Narendra Modi government’s one year in power
As the government completes one year in office, we have designed an interactive timeline that highlights many of the hits and misses of this government. Take a look.
TIMELINE IN TEXT
May 26, 2014 – Sworn to Power – After landslide elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his cabinet are sworn in at an elaborate function in the forecourt of the Rashtrapati Bhawan.
May 27, 2014 – Hand to Pakistan – The first day of PM Modi in office was marked by a meeting with Pakistan Premier Nawaz Sharif and a handshake that was splashed across next day’s newspapers.
June 14, 2014 – Thrust on Military Might – The Prime Minister dedicated India’s largest warship – INS Vikramaditya — to the nation and pitched for making the country self-reliant on manufacturing defence equipment.
June 15, 2014 – The Bhutanese Bond – As part of his first foreign visit, the Prime Minister chose Bhutan, a land-locked Himalayan country that has always been a great friend of India. In Bhutan, PM Modi stressed that a happy neighbour is integral for India’s progress.
June 21, 2014 – Biting the Bullet – The Modi government got its first taste of public protests after its decision to impose a rail fare hike and increase the import duty on sugar. Both decisions were highly slammed by opposition parties and the public.
July 14, 2014 – BRICS in Brazil – PM Modi’s diplomatic efforts got a boost as he met Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin as part of the BRICS Summit in Brazil.
July 27, 2014 – Doubts of Distrust – Stray incidents of discrimination against minorities puts spotlight back on whether the Modi administration is serious about maintaining equality for all. One was an incident of a Shiv Sena lawmaker pushing food into the mouth of a Muslim caterer, another indicating that India could become a Hindu nation under Modi.
August 3, 2014 – Road to Kathmandu – The Prime Minister made his first visit to Nepal in August in further indication that SAARC countries remain his focus when it comes to extending India’s foreign policy boundaries.
August 15, 2014 – Invoking the ‘Pradhan Sevak’ – Making his first Independence Day speech after becoming India’s premier, Narendra Modi made a pitch for a ‘Swacch Bharat’ and exhorted countrymen to make efforts to educate the girl child.
August 25, 2014 – Bypoll Setback – In first elections after the Modi government was voted to power, the ruling BJP lost out in a majority of the seats that went for elections in the states of Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal.
August 28, 2014 – Jan Dhan Yojana – PM Modi formally launched a massive financial inclusion programme named ‘Jan Dhan Yojana’ that aims to help provide a bank account for every household in the country.
September 5, 2014 – The Teachers’ Day dilemma – The HRD Ministry’s directive to all schools across the country to live-stream PM Modi’s Teachers’ Day Speech provided discomfiture to a large section of the public. Many were enraged especially on social media as to how students were made to come to school on a day generally regarded as a holiday.
September 25, 2014 – Shiv Sena break-up – The ruling BJP and the Modi government were hit by a huge blow after hectic negotiations with the Shiv Sena, a 25- year-old ally, broke down thus leading to break-up of the alliance ahead of all-important Maharashtra elections.
September 28, 2014 – The Madison Magic – ‘This is India’s century’: That’s what PM Modi told a sellout crowd at the Madison Square Garden in New York as part of his historic US visit. The PM’s meeting with President Barack Obama also led to widespread media coverage.
October 2, 2014 – Swacch Bharat Abhiyan – On the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, PM Modi announced the initiation of Swacch Bharat Abhiyan — a nationwide mission to clean India’s streets and ensure sanitation. He also called upon celebrities, fellow lawmakers and industrialists to pick up the broom for the cause.
October 19, 2014 – Electoral prowess – Maharashtra’s decisive election results – which gave the BJP the maximum number of seats in the state Assembly and a chance to form the government – was seen as public support for the Modi government. Haryana too, for the first time, gave the BJP the first shot at power. In both states, Modi had campaigned aggressively to woo voters.
November 12, 2014 – Foreign outreach – PM Modi’s foreign outreach continued with his attendance at the ASEAN-India and the East Asia Summits held at NayPyiDaw in Myanmar. He also travelled to Australia to set up meeting with PM Tony Abbott and a rare appearance at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
December 1, 2014 – The Sadhvi Saga – In a major embarrasment for the Modi government, one of its ministers — Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti — made communal remarks at an election rally in Delhi. Her use of the ‘Haraamzada’ expletive at the rally caused uproar in both houses of Parliament in the winter session.
December 23, 2014 – History in J&K – The BJP created history in Jammu and Kashmir by sweeping the Jammu region and becoming the second-largest party in the state Assembly elections. It also won enough seats to form a government in Jharkhand in an alliance with the AJSU. The verdict in both states were testament to 2014 remaining a highly successful electoral year for the ruling BJP and its leader Narendra Modi.
January 7, 2015 – The 4 kids dilemma – After Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, it was the turn of another BJP lawmaker to embarrass the government with foot-in-the-mouth comments. At a gathering of saints, Sakshi Maharaj, a saffron clad MP from Unnao, stated that every Hindu woman must produce at least 4 children to protect the religion. Once again, the remark was widely panned and the PM’s silence over it questioned.
January 23, 2015 – Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao – Reiterating the government’s commitment to end discrimination against the girl child, PM Modi launched a nationwide programme ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’ exhorting citizens to prevent female foeticide and encourage girl child education.
January 26, 2015 – The Obamas in attendance – India’s Republic Day Celebrations this year had a high-profile guest – US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. As the elephants trumpeted and camels walked on the majestic Rajpath, the Obamas sat under a rain-drenched canopy admiring the parade.
February 10, 2015 – Delhi Debacle – The ruling BJP got a crude shock as they were handed out a humiliating defeat by the Aam Aadmi Party in the Assembly elections in Delhi. The election proved that the Modi effect would indeed be now waning.
February 28, 2015 – Prabhu’s Rail budget – Modi’s techno-minister Suresh Prabhu, the Railways Minister, presented his first budget announcing no increase in passenger fares but at the same time desisting from announcing new services as well.
March 15, 2015 – General Budget – Finance Minister Arun Jaitley presented the full fledged and much-awaited General Budget 2015 that had a bit for every class of society. From abolition of wealth tax to increase in service tax, the budget had both ups and downs.
March 22, 2015 – Man ki baat with Kisaan – As his government battled extreme heat over the controversial land acquisition bill, PM Modi spoke to thousands of farmers over the radio, trying to dispel rumours that his policies are anti-farmer. He assured the farmers that his government would do nothing to upset farmers.
April 14, 2015 – Yemen crisis – External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj announced on Twitter that the Indian embassy in Yemen was being evacuated in light of the war there. The tweet put an end to a massive rescue operation that the government had earlier launched in the war-torn country to save thousands of Indians fleeing Yemen.
April 17, 2015 – Three-nation tour – PM Modi undertook a three-nation tour to France, Germany and Canada exhorting industralists and CEOs to contribute to the ‘Make in India’ programme of the government.
April 25, 2015 – Himalayan earthquake – The Modi government’s swift and quick response to the Nepal earthquake that flattened hundreds of buildings and killed more than 7,000 people was highly praise-worthy. Within forty minutes of the first tremors, Modi had sent out his first tweet responding to the disaster.
May 7, 2015 – Historic land swap – Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj got a round of applause from all quarters in the Parliament as members across treasury and opposition benches came together to pass a constitution amendment bill for a historic land boundary agreement with Bangladesh.
(Disclaimer: The interactive timeline is not visible on the app. To view the timeline, click here)