The reason why Narendra Modi is truly loved by ordinary people on the streets is not so much because people believe he has done more than any other prime minister, but because he taps into their aspirations through power. ideas.
Modi embodies his national vision with achievable goals and tasks to present an improved reality and a long-awaited image of India to his people. He did a great job of articulating ideas that we all discuss in our living rooms. The changes we wanted to see in India, but didn’t know where to start.
From his very first Independence Day speech, which outlined the ambitious plan of ‘Swachh Bharat’ which included the goal of making India open defecation free and cleaner overall, Modi has succeeded to invoke a sense of pride for the country, while also highlighting the work that needs to be done.
How many of us wanted to see India without open defecation? How many of us lamented the utter filth we had descended into, despite being people who valued cleanliness inside our homes? How many of us have been ashamed?
Deep down we wanted all of these changes, but we didn’t expect them to happen because our expectations had been set so low over the decades. For all those who believed in these changes, we also had enough of those who said: “India will never change, its people will never change”.
Modi managed to tap into this deep desire of the Indian people who desperately wanted a change and more importantly he managed to bring them into this change as well.
That’s why, while the opposition may quibble about the number of deliverables, people know and have seen visible change with thousands of toilets built for them and others. Drilling holes isn’t enough to pierce the pride that comes with this toilet. Litter persists, but litter awareness is at an all-time high. Political barbs on cities that are still dirty don’t hurt Modi as much as they hurt all citizens. Because ultimately a nation doesn’t change unless its people do, and Modi was able to get that message across.
READ ALSO | Under Prime Minister Modi, India’s foreign policy has shed its soothing appearance and become more assertive
It is no surprise that Prime Minister Modi’s ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ campaign in 2022 – to mark 75 years of independence and commemorate ‘Azaadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ – has become such a success.
From young to old, rich to less fortunate, private cars to autorickshaws, independent households to housing companies, people were proud of their national flag as never before.
It seemed corny at first, but even the staunchest critics know that having the same pride of place for the national flag is an important part of life in, say, the United States, a nation we all aspire to be like. one way or another. Criticizing it becomes almost impossible and when the opposition does it by raising the issue of the tricolor made in China or the bad material used to make the flags, people ignore them because they are already busy taking selfies with the flag in their house.
An idea is always greater than the individual. It is a simple concept that the opposition has not yet understood. They keep competing and attacking the individual, but they haven’t been able to compete with Modi’s ideas yet. In fact, the opposition has been singularly lacking in new ideas and it’s no surprise they don’t challenge Modi domestically.
Like it or not, as prime minister, Modi filled a big void of ideas in Indian politics. It is possible to say that since Indira Gandhi, Indian politics has been mired in so many factors, assassinations, coalition politics and corruption at the center of attention, that we have just fallen behind in the grand visions which fuel not only our growth, but also our behavior.
READ ALSO | PM Modi’s vision for Bharat: a quest for individuality and the construction of a Bharatiya development model
Except for PV Narsimha Rao and Atal Bihari Vajpayee, no one else had the chance or could produce the chance to become an ‘idea driver’. Modi clung to this space.
If the opposition wants to compete with him, it will have to start by drawing up new ideas for the country.
And no, “the age-old and much discredited idea of India” will not work on its own.
Shivani Gupta is a senior journalist and co-author of “Ace against Odds”, Sania Mirza’s autobiography.
Read all Latest opinion news and recent news here