Narendra Modi (Gujarati:નરેન્દ્ર મોદી) As a strong man with unparalleled administrative talents and great determination. Born and brought up in a noble culture, he derived his values of generosity, benevolence and social service from his family and social backdrop. He possesses excellent knowledge on human psychology and is also endowed with impressive organizational capabilities that are well evident in the economic and political atmosphere of present-day Gujarat. With his deliberate and uncompromising efforts that made Gujarat an economic power house, he proved that ‘action speaks louder than words’. In spite of the vicious and prolonged campaign of vilification against him, he managed to rule the minds of the people in Gujarat who elected him as the Chief Minister of Gujarat for the third consecutive time. With his unusual courage to convert challenges into opportunities, Modi is regarded as a great administrator and a powerful, innovative leader.
Narendra Damodardas Modi was born into a middle class Hindu family. Born in Vadanagar, Gujarat, on September 17, 1950. He served the Indian Army soldiers in transit during the Indo-Pak war. He lent his benevolent hands to serve the flood-affected people in Gujarat in 1967. He joined a student organization called the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and worked as a full-time organizer for the same. He also was involved in the anti-corruption Reconstruction Movement (Navnirman). Later he was nominated as the organization’s representative in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). He worked with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), which is a socio-cultural organization that focuses on the social and cultural development of India. Modi did his schooling in Vadnagar and finished a Master’s degree in Political Science. He is also quite the poet and has written a large number of poems.
Narendra Modi started his political career in his early ages and spread the ideology of ABVP and worked with the RSS.He carried out important roles in many crucial situations such as the anti-corruption agitation in 1974 and the 19-month long emergency period in 1975-1977 declared by the then Prime Minister of India, Mrs. Indira Gandhi. He stood by the people and fought a spirited battle against the fascist acts of the central government. Modi entered mainstream politics in 1987 by joining the Bharatiya Janata Party and worked for the Gujrat unit of the party. It was because of his proven talent as an effective organizer that he grew to the post of General Secretary of the party (Gujarat Unit) within a year. He created a strong cadre base for the party in Gujarat, working in partnership with Shankarsingh Vaghela. Working under a master strategist like Modi, BJP started gaining political mileage in Gujarat and managed to ascend to power with a two-thirds majority in 1995. Since then, the BJP is successfully ruling Gujarat till now.
Between 1988 and 1995 Modi was given responsibility to organize major events of national importance like Somnath – AyodhyaYatra (led by L.K Advani) and also Kanyakumari – Kashmir Yatra which led to the growth of BJP as the Central Government in 1998. He was appointed as the National Secretary of the party in 1995 with the charge of five major states in India, which was truly a rare distinction for a young leader and then as the General Secretary of BJP in 1998 up to 2001. In 2001, when Keshubhai Patel was removed from power, BJP chose Narendra Modi as the Chief Minister of Gujarat and from then on, he is the avourite leader of Gujarat people.
Gujarat witnessed a major riot in 2002, after the Sabarmati Express train was attacked by a group of Muslims thus leading to a Hindu-Muslim communal riot. These mishaps occurred on 27th February, 2002 at Godhra City and a total of 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus were killed and 223 more people were reported missing. It caused heavy damage to the state including the destruction of religious worship places: 298 dargahs, 205 mosques, 17 temples and 3 churches were destroyed during the riots. As a consequence of the riots, Modi resigned from his position. However, the people of Gujrat still patronized Modi and he came back to power after getting elected again in the state elections.
Modi was considered responsible for these riots and the U.S withdrew his visa. The Supreme Court of India on its part appointed a special investigation team to investigate Modi’s alleged role in the riots, but the team could not find any evidence against him.
Narendra Modi has contributed a lot towards the growth of Gujarat. He introduced many Yojnas in Gujarat. Some of them are:
- Krishi Mahotsav – for agricultural research labs.
- Chiranjeevi Yojanato – to reduce infant mortality rate.
- Matru Vandana – for Reproductive and Child Health Programmes.
- Beti Bachao campaign -to protect infant girls and to improve the sex ratio.
- Jyotigram Yojanato -to introduce electricity to every village.
- Karmayogi Abhiyan- to provide education and training to government employees.
- Kanya Kelavani Yojana -to encourage education amongst girls.
- Balbhog Yojana -as a midday meal project for students.
With the assistance of a Broadband connection, Modi is planning to connect villages of Gujarat to one another. His affective administration skills helped Gujrat to recover from the damage caused by the 2001 earthquake.
In 2001, when Modi took charge as the Chief Minister of Gujarat, the state was struggling with a shrinking economy because of various reasons including the massive earthquakes of 2001. He put in a lot of efforts to restore the state’s economy and as a result of his efforts, Gujarat registered a 10% growth rate in his first tenure which was the highest growth rate among Indian states. Gujarat has bagged several awards and was recognized by the world under his leadership. The state of Gujarat won awards like “The UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction”, “Commonwealth Association for Public Administration and Management (CAPAM)” award for innovations in governance, UNESCO award and CSI award for e-Governance to name some.
Awards and Accolades:
- Best Chief Minister of the Country (2006)
- Best Chief Minister of the Country (2006)
- fDi Personality of the Year Award (2009) by fDi Magazine. This award was withdrawn later and awarded to the state of Gujarat instead.
- 1950 – Born at Vadnagar, Gujarat
- 1987 – Entered mainstream politics
- 1995 – Became the National Secretary of BJP
- 1998 – Became General Secretary of BJP
- 2001 – Became the Chief Minister of Gujarat
- 2002 – Modi was elected again as the Chief Minister of Gujarat