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The record of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) during

its three years in power has been impressive, judging by macroeconomic parameters, especially
inflation.

Politically too, the BJP has seen unprecedented ascendancy by wresting back power in Uttar
Pradesh in March after a gap of 15 years and expanding its electoral footprint to the North-East.
This in part explains why Prime Minister Narendra Modi remains Indias most popular political
leader.

ALSO READ: Timeline of policy initiatives in three years of Modi government

Still, controversies associated with the actions of fringe saffron groups have left the BJP
vulnerable to criticism. The next general election is due in 2019 and, to a large extent, the
outcome will depend on Modis management of the optics and his governments ability to
generate jobs to meet the growing aspirations of voters.

Here is a look at the key themes of the NDAs three years in power.

CONNECTIVITY

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurating the UDAN regional connectivity scheme in Shimla.
Photo: Hindustan Times

Positive

1. New integrated transportation initiative for roads, railways, waterways and civil aviation.

2. Sagarmala and Bharatmala programmes for the construction of new ports and expressways.

3. UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik) regional connectivity scheme with fares starting at about
Rs2,500.

Negative

1. Increasing number of railway accidents.

2. 23km per day of highway construction achieved vis-a-vis a target of 41km.

3. Air Indias finances are still precarious. The national carrier is still grappling with legacy
issues.

TERROR, DEFENCE AND FOREIGN POLICY


India carried out surgical strikes across the Line of Control (LoC) in Kashmir. Photo: Tauseef
Mustafa/AFP

Positive

1. Carried out surgical strikes across the Line of Control (LoC) in Kashmir, resumed cordon and
search operations in more than 20 villages in Shopian.

2. Combing operations launched against Maoists in Chhattisgarh.

Prime Minister Narendra Modis neighbourhood diplomacy falling in place as relations with
Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka look up.

Negative

1. No strategy to pre-empt rebel attacks on security personnel in districts where Maoists are
active.

2. Ties with Pakistan and China are icy despite Prime Minister Modi making trips to both
countries (a December 2015 stopover in the former).

3. Relations with RussiaIndias once time-tested friendtoo seem to be in the doldrums.

FARMERS

The Narendra Modi government has set an ambitious goal to double farm incomes in real terms
by 2022. Photo: Mint

Positive

1. New crop insurance scheme and higher funding for irrigation to counter weather risks.

2. Set an ambitious goal to double farm incomes in real terms by 2022, moving away from the
historical focus on increasing production.

3. Initiated a range of marketing reforms to create a one nation, one market in agriculture.

Negative

1. Decline in wholesale prices of vegetables and pulses has dented farm incomes.

2. A loan waiver in Uttar Pradesh led to a moral hazard problem and delay in repayment of loans
in other states.

3. Acute drought in southern states led to a spike in farm suicides.


GREEN ECONOMY AND ENERGY

Clean and renewable energy generation has got a boost under the Narendra Modi government.
Photo: Bloomberg

Positive

1. Push for electric vehicles.

2. Rs42,000 crore unlocked for afforestation with Parliament passing The Compensatory
Afforestation Fund Bill, 2016.

3. Clean and renewable energy generation gets a boost.

Negative

1. Neglect of the forest and wildlife sectors. Decisions pending on a national forest policy,
definition of forests, inviolate forest areas and a national wildlife action plan.

2. Activists allege that the government is favouring industries and indiscriminately giving green
clearances, ignoring the toll taken on the environment.

3. Ganga clean-up is yet to gather momentum.

FISCAL SITUATION

Demonetisation drive led to short-term cash crunch, hit small and medium enterprises. Photo:
Ramesh Pathania/Mint

Positive

1. Got states on board to introduce the goods and services tax (GST), the biggest tax reform since
independence.

2. Crackdown on black money leads to a surge in 2016-17 tax receipts, number of return filers.

3. Merger of railway budget with Union budget and shifting budget presentation date to 1
February from 28 February.

Negative

1. Demonetisation drive led to short-term cash crunch, hit small and medium enterprises.

2. Pending cases of retrospective taxation on past transactions still unresolved.


3. Inability to bring back black money stashed away abroad by citizens.

POLITICS

The Narendra Modi government, in the past three years, has achieved unanimity on the economic
reforms agenda with high parliamentary productivity. Photo: PTI

Positive

1. Getting unanimity on the economic reforms agenda with high parliamentary productivity.

2. Series of electoral gains puts the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) on the political
forefront.

3. Expanding voter base of the BJP to Dalits and other backward classes, focus on expansion in
the North-East.

Negative

1. Failure to get consensus on reform policies like a proposed land bill.

2. Allegations of toppling elected state governments.

3. Problems within the NDA: the Peoples Democratic Party (Jammu and Kashmir), Shiv Sena
(Maharashtra) and Telugu Desam Party (Andhra Pradesh) are annoyed with the BJP leadership.

EMPOWERMENTSOCIAL SAFETY, EDUCATION, JOBS, GENDER

The Narendra Modi government has also introduced graded autonomy to promote quality in
education. Photo: Mint

Positive

1. Graded autonomy to promote quality in education.

2. Slew of social security measures to benefit the working class.

3. Six months of paid maternity leave for working women.

Negative

1. The Womens Reservation Bill is still pending.

2. New Education Policy still to be formulated.


3. Job creation yet to pick up pace.

MINDSET CHANGE

Narendra Modi has launched Swachh Bharat Mission to eliminate open defecation and promote
cleanliness. Photo: AFP

Positive

1. Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched to eliminate open defecation and promote cleanliness.

2. Soviet-style five-year plans come to an end; 15-year vision, three-year action plan come into
play.

3. Cashless economy.

Negative

1. Hyper-nationalism as seen through the lens of social media trolling and rise of vigilante
groups with little regard for human life.

2. Rise of vigilante groups with political agendas who attack minorities.

3. In spite of stricter laws, greater awareness and even campaigns, violence against women
continues unabated.

DIGITAL AND COMMUNICATIONS

The Narendra Modi government has leveraged Aadhaar for improving service delivery to
citizens, but leakage of biometric data has raised questions on that move. Photo: Ramesh
Pathania/Mint

Positive

1. Improving e-infrastructure, e-participation and government e-services for addressing


transparency.

2. Unified Payments Interface (UPI)a payment system that allows mobile-enabled money
transfers between bank accounts. Promotion of the Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM) for a
less-cash economy.

3. Leveraging Aadhaar for improving service delivery to citizens.

Negative
1. Call drops continue despite mobile phone services providers promising improvement.

2. Drop in digital payment transactions with the easing of a cash crunch that followed the
demonetisation of high-value banknotes in November.

3. Leakage of Aadhaar data.

OPTICS

The Narendra Modi government has banned the red beacona symbol of so-called VIP
culturefrom all government vehicles. Photo: Hindustan Times

Positive

1. Doing away with the red beacona symbol of so-called VIP culturefrom all government
vehicles.

2. Extending support to ending the practice of triple talaq.

3. Introducing the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (save the girl child, educate the girl child) scheme.

Negative

1. Rise of vigilante groups called Gau Rakshaks, who target people suspected of harming cows
or consuming beef.

2. Launch of the anti-Romeo squads in Uttar Pradesh, ostensibly to protect women from
harassment, but seen widely as moral policing.

3. Ghar Wapsi (homecoming), aimed at promoting the conversion of non-Hindus to Hinduism,


and campaign against Love Jihad, allegedly practised by Muslim men to win over Hindu women.