Narendra Modi: Wikis

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Narendra Modi


In office
for the 3rd term
Incumbent
Assumed office 
7 October 2001
Governor Nawal Kishore Sharma
Preceded by Keshubhai Patel
Constituency Maninagar

Born September 17, 1950 (1950-09-17) (age 59)
Vadnagar, Mehsana district, Gujarat, India
Political party Bharatiya Janata Party
Children none
Residence Gandhinagar, Gujarat
Alma mater Gujarat University[1]
Religion Hindu
Website Narendra Modi Website
As of 9 March, 2009
Source: Government of Gujarat

Narendra Damodardas Modi (Gujarati: નરેંદ્ર દામોદરદાસ મોદી, IPA: [nəɾɛn̪d̪ɾə d̪ämod̪əɾd̪äs mod̪i]; born 17 September 1950[1]) is the Chief Minister of the Indian state of Gujarat since 7 October 2001.

He participated in the rise to political dominance of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Gujarat as its elections organiser in the early 1990s. This was the period which led to the election of the party in 1995. He became Gujarat's Chief Minister in October 2001, promoted to the office at a time when his predecessor Keshubhai Patel had resigned, following the defeat of BJP in the by-elections.

He was re-elected in December 2002 as chief minister with 127 seats in the 182-member assembly. His term has been praised by leading industrialists[2][3] and religious leaders[4] for outstanding administration for turning Gujarat into an economic powerhouse and controlling terrorism. It has been criticised for alleged mismanagement of and complicity in the 2002 Gujarat violence.[5][6]

In July 2007 he became the longest serving Chief Minister in Gujarat's history when he had been in power for 2063 days continuously.[7]

He was elected again for a third term[8] on December 23, 2007 with an emphatic win in the state elections, which he had cast as a "referendum on his rule".[9][10]

Contents

Personal life

Modi was born on 17 September 1950 to a middle class family in Vadnagar in Mehsana district of North Gujarat. During the Indo-Pak war in the mid sixties, even as a young boy, he volunteered to serve the soldiers in transit at railway stations. In 1967, he served the flood affected people of Gujarat. As a young man, he joined the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad, a student organization and was involved in the anti-corruption Nav Nirmāṇ ("Reconstruction") Movement. After working as a full time organizer for the organization, he was later nominated as its representative in the Bharatiya Janata Party.[11] He started with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS),a socio-cultural organization with a focus on social and cultural development of India.

He completed his schooling in Vadnagar. He holds the distinction of being a well-educated politician, having earned a masters graduate degree in Political Science from Gujarat University. He is known for being a poet and has published few book of poetry. He is a bachelor. He is the first and thus far, only, bachelor chief minister of Gujarat.

Early activism and politics

Narendra Modi (left) with Nitish Kumar, Bihar chief minister, at a BJP rally

During his tenure with the RSS, Modi played several important roles on various occasions including the 1974 anti-corruption agitation and the harrowing 19-month (June 1975 to January 1977) long ‘Emergency (India)’,declared by the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, when the fundamental rights of Indian citizens were strangled. Modi kept the spirit of democracy alive by going underground for the entire period and fighting a spirited battle against the fascist ways of the then central government[citation needed].

He entered mainstream politics in 1987 by joining the BJP[citation needed]. Just within a year, he was elevated to the level of General Secretary of the Gujarat unit. By that time he had already acquired a reputation for being a highly efficient organizer[citation needed]. He took up the challenging task of energizing the party cadres in right earnest. The party started gaining political mileage and formed a coalition government at the centre in April 1990. This partnership fell apart within a few months, but the BJP came to power with a two-thirds majority on its own in Gujarat in 1995. Since then, the BJP has been governing Gujarat.

Between 1988 and 1995, Modi was recognized as a master strategist who had successfully gained the necessary groundwork for making the Gujarat BJP the ruling party of the state[citation needed].

Narendra Modi with people during Rakhabandhan

During this period, Modi was entrusted with the responsibility of organizing two crucial national events, the Somnath to Ayodhya Rath Yatra (a very long march) of L.K. Advani and a similar march from Kanyakumari (the southernmost part of India) to Kashmir in the North. The ascent of the BJP to power at New Delhi in 1998 has been attributed to these two highly successful events, substantially handled by Modi[citation needed].

In 1995, he was appointed the National Secretary of the party and given the charge of five major states in India – a rare distinction for a young leader[citation needed]. In 1998, he was promoted as the General Secretary (Organization), a post he held until October 2001, when he was chosen to be the Chief Minister of Gujarat, one of the most prosperous and progressive states of India.

During his stint at the national level, Modi was given the responsibility to oversee the affairs of several state level units, including the sensitive and crucial state of Jammu and Kashmir and the equally sensitive north-eastern states. He was responsible for revamping the party organization in several states[citation needed]. While working at the national level, Modi emerged as an important spokesman for the party and played a key role on several important occasions.

Tenure as Chief Minister

Narendra Modi with Lal Krishna Advani and India Inc Leaders during VGGIS 2003

In October 2001, he was called upon by the party to lead the Government in Gujarat. When the Modi government was sworn in on October 7, 2001, the economy of Gujarat was reeling under the adverse effects of several natural calamities, including a massive earthquake in January 2001. However Modi, a master strategist, who was enriched by national and international exposure and experience, decided to take the bull by its horns.

He is believed to be a protégé of Lal Krishna Advani, who is a senior leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party himself. Advani has praised Modi on numerous occasions, referring to him as "a leader who, after being subjected to a malicious and prolonged campaign of vilification, has been able to impress even his critics with his determination, single-minded focus, integrity and a wide array of achievements in a relatively short time."[12]

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Gujarat earthquake

The biggest challenge which he had to face, when he took over as the Chief Minster, was the reconstruction and rehabilitation of the areas affected by the massive Gujarat Earthquake of January 2001. Bhuj was a city of rubble and thousands of people were living in temporary shelters without any basic infrastructure. Today Bhuj is proof of how Modi has turned adversity into an opportunity for holistic development. In this critical situation, Modi is credited with starting immediate work to re-organize and stimulate the local economy.[13] Modi made an international record of restoration of 876618 houses in just 500 days. For Narendra Modi outstanding contribution for disaster management and rehabilitation, on 16-10-2003 Gujarat govt got UN Sasakawa Award for outstanding work in the field of disaster management and risk reduction.

Gujarat violence

Narendra Modi with Anil Ambani during VGGIS 2003

In February 2002 violence broke out across the state claiming around 1000 lives. Independent estimates by human rights groups and NGOs place the figure higher to around 2000. The official estimate stated that 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus were killed, 223 people were reported missing and 2,500 were injured.[14] The root cause of riots was attributed to the Godhra Train Burning incident in which 58 Hindu Kar Sevaks were burnt alive by an alleged Muslim mob but it was never proven.[15][16] The Banerjee committee, set up by Railway Minister Lalu Prasad in September 2004, in its report submitted in 2005 had said the burning of S-6 coach of Sabarmati express on February 27, 2002 was an accident started by people cooking food in the railway car and said there was no Muslim involvement.[17][18] The Nanavati Commission however termed the Sabarmati express incident as a 'pre-planned conspiracy' and gave a clean chit to Mr. Modi[19]

Political fallout

As an aftermath of the riots, there were calls for Modi to resign from his position as chief minister of Gujarat. The opposition parties stalled the national parliament over the issue. Even Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) and Telugu Desam Party (TDP), allies of the BJP, asked for Modi's resignation.[20][21] Modi submitted his resignation to the Governor and recommended the dissolution of the 10th Gujarat Legislative Assembly.[22][23] In the following state re-elections the BJP, led by Modi, won 127 seats in the 182-member assembly.

The United States revoked a visa for Modi the following year. He was cited for responsibility for violations of religious freedom under the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998.[24]

In April 2009, India's Supreme Court appointed a special team of investigators to look into the role Modi had played in the alleged anti-Muslim conspiracy.[6] The team was appointed in response to the complaint of Jakia Jafri, the widow of ex-Congress MP Ehsan Jafri, who was murdered in the riots.[25]

2007 elections

Modi's 2007 election campaign was marked with some passionate speeches reflecting his vision for Gujarat and his aggressive leadership. One such speech was given at Magrol in response of Sonia Gandhi's speech calling him a "merchant of death",[26] and referred to Sohrabuddin's killings. For this speech the Election Commission of India, a constitutional body governing election proceedings in India, cautioned Modi as it considered it as indulging in an activity which may aggravate existing differences between different communities. However, a similar procedure was not brought against Sonia Gandhi causing a lot of furore in Modi's supporters.[27]

Gujarat development

Modi took charge of Gujarat when its economy was shrinking and the domestic growth was stagnant.[28] Faced with massive economic losses, he re-organised the government's administrative structure and embarked upon a massive cost-cutting exercise.[29] As a result of his elaborate efforts, Gujarat registered a GDP growth rate of over 10% during his first tenure. This was the highest growth rate among all the Indian states.[30]

As a Chief Minister, Modi concretely put to practice his envisaged Gujarat by means of various yojana.[31] This includes Panchamrut Yojana,[32][33][34] a five-pronged strategy for an integrated development of the state, Sujalam Sufalam, a scheme to create a grid of water resources in Gujarat in an innovative step towards water conservation and its appropriate utilization.

  • Krishi Mahotsav – agricultural research labs for the land
  • Chiranjeevi Yojana – to reduce infant mortality rate
  • Matru Vandana – providing preventive and curative services under the Reproductive and Child Health Programme
  • Beti Bachao – campaign to protect baby girls to improve sex ratio
  • Jyotigram Yojana – to electrify every village
  • Karmayogi Abhiyan – to educate and train government employee
  • Kanya Kalavani Yojana – to encourage the education of girls
  • Balbhog Yojana – for midday meal for students

As a result of these yojna's Gujarat became number one state in India in various perspective. Many scholar and India Inc leaders suggested that if Gujarat model will be applied in all states in India then India can easily become a developed nation.

Position on terrorism

On 18 July 2006, Modi delivered a speech criticizing Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh "for his reluctance to revive anti-terror legislations" like the Prevention of Terrorism Act. He asked the Centre to empower states to invoke tougher laws in the wake of the blasts in Mumbai.[35] Quoting Modi:

Terrorism is worse than a war. A terrorist has no rules. A terrorist decides when, how, where and whom to kill. India has lost more people in terror attacks than in its wars.[35]

Narendra Modi has frequently commented that if the BJP came to power at the Centre, they will honor the 2004 Supreme Court judgement to hang Afzal Guru.[36] Afzal was convicted of terrorism in the 2001 Indian Parliament attack in 2004 by the Supreme Court of India and is in Tihar Jail.[37]

During the November 2008 Mumbai attacks, on Thursday 27 November, Narendra Modi held a meeting to discuss waterfront security along the coastline.[38] At the conclusion of the meeting, it was decided that a number of steps be taken to improve security:

  • Increase the number of police stations along the coast to 50 (from 10)
  • Increase the number of police to 1500 from 250
  • 30 modern high-speed surveillance boats (there are currently none)

2009 Lok Sabha elections

Although the BJP narrowly managed to win majority of the seats in Gujrat, the loss of the Rajkot seat, after almost 20 years of control, was unexpected. Prominent politicians like Sharad Yadav commented that the BJP's projection of Modi as a future Prime Minister affected it's performance in the 2009 Lok Sabha elections.[39] 'A confidential report, prepared by the BJP on the reasons for the party's humiliating defeat in the 2009 Lok Sabha election, has blamed Modi' among many indian politicians and other factors'.[40][41]

Awards and recognitions

  • 30-01-2006 – In a nationwide survey conducted by India Today, Narendra Modi was declared the Best Chief Minister of the country.[42]
  • 05-02-2007 – Adjudged the best CM for the third time in the nationwide survey conducted by India Today – ORG Marg, a unique achievement for any CM during a 5-year tenure.
  • 25-08-2009 – Chosen as The Asian Winner of the fDi Personality of the Year Awards for 2009 by fDi Magazine.[43]

References

  1. ^ a b "Narendra Modi - Biography". Moneycontrol. http://www.moneycontrol.com/biography/Narendra_Modi/550. Retrieved April 5, 2009. 
  2. ^ Handful of industrialists can’t decide our next PM: Congress Indian Express - January 16, 2009
  3. ^ Modi’s success saga: Now, told by Gujarat Inc Indian Express - April 26, 2007
  4. ^ Sants pour scorn on LKA, praise Modi Times of India - June 21, 2005
  5. ^ "Don't mention the massacre". The Economist: pp. 47. December 8, 2007. http://www.economist.com/displaystory.cfm?story_id=10251282. 
  6. ^ a b Sengupta, Somini (2009-04-28). "Shadows of Violence Cling to Indian Politician". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/29/world/asia/29india.html. Retrieved 2009-08-25. 
  7. ^ Modi becomes longest serving CM of Gujarat
  8. ^ "Modi begins new term in Gujarat". BBC News. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/7159756.stm. Retrieved 2008-05-07. 
  9. ^ "Hindu Leader Begins 3rd Term in Gujarat". ABC News. http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory?id=4049443. Retrieved 2008-05-07. 
  10. ^ "Narendra Modi begins third innings as Gujarat CM". The Times of India. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Modi_begins_third_innings_as_Gujarat_CM/articleshow/2650589.cms. Retrieved 2008-05-07. 
  11. ^ "Biography - Narendra Modi". http://www.narendramodi.org/bio.htm. Retrieved 2008-05-08. 
  12. ^ "Gujarat CM Modi, is a role model". Press Trust of India. http://www.expressindia.com/news/fullstory.php?newsid=65801. Retrieved 2007-11-16. 
  13. ^ Modi for early revival of Kutch economy The Hindu - October 21, 2007
  14. ^ "Gujarat riot death toll revealed". BBC News. May 11, 2005. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/4536199.stm. Retrieved 2006-04-15. 
  15. ^ "Godhra's bitter harvest". BBC News. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/2802591.stm. Retrieved September 7, 2009. 
  16. ^ "III. MASSACRES IN GODHRA AND AHMEDABAD". Human Rights Watch. http://www.hrw.org/legacy/reports/2002/india/India0402-02.htm#P241_39157. Retrieved April 5, 2009. 
  17. ^ "Godhra was an accident, reiterates Banerjee". India News Online. September 25, 2008. http://news.indiamart.com/news-analysis/godhra-train-fire-ac-11837.html. Retrieved September 7, 2009. 
  18. ^ "Godhra was an accident, reiterates Banerjee". Expressindia. September 25, 2008. http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/Godhra-was-an-accident-reiterates-Banerjee/365855/. Retrieved April 5, 2009. 
  19. ^ "Truth brought out by Nanavati Commission: Modi". PTI. DNA. September 26, 2008. http://www.dnaindia.com/report.asp?newsid=1193463. Retrieved April 5, 2009. 
  20. ^ "Gujarat Cabinet puts off decision on elections". The Tribune. 2002. http://www.tribuneindia.com/2002/20020418/main1.htm. Retrieved 2006-05-09. 
  21. ^ "Congress demands Modi's resignation over Bannerjee report". United News of India. http://www.rediff.com/news/2006/mar/03godhra.htm. Retrieved 2007-11-17. 
  22. ^ "Modi resigns; seeks Assembly dissolution". The Hindu. 2002. http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/2002/07/20/stories/2002072002640100.htm. Retrieved 2006-05-09. 
  23. ^ "Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi resigns; assembly dissolved". Rediff.com. http://www.rediff.com/news/2002/jul/19guj.htm. Retrieved 2007-11-17. 
  24. ^ Krittivas Mukherjee. "Five years on, India's "modern-day Nero" prospers". Reuters. http://www.reuters.com/article/latestCrisis/idUSDEL71643. Retrieved 2008-05-09. 
  25. ^ Mahapatra, Dhananjay (2009-07-31). "SC rejects Modi govt's plea to stall SIT probe". Times of India. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/NEWS/India/SC-not-to-stall-probe-on-02-riots/articleshow/4839947.cms. Retrieved 2009-08-25. 
  26. ^ Sonia's 'merchants of death' was aimed at Modi: Cong
  27. ^ Election Commission Official Notice to Mr. Modi
  28. ^ Laveesh Bhandari (October 15, 2007). "Riots+economic growth=?". Indian Express. http://www.indianexpress.com/story/228419.html. Retrieved 2008-05-09. 
  29. ^ Chief Minister – Government of Gujarat
  30. ^ How to achieve 10% GDP growth Rediff - 16 March 2006
  31. ^ Gujarat progress under Narendra Modi
  32. ^ "Modi invites investment in Gujarat". Press Trust of India. Expressindia. January 11, 2003. http://www.expressindia.com/news/fullstory.php?newsid=18327. Retrieved April 5, 2009. 
  33. ^ "Modi Steals The Show At Pravasi Divas". The Financial Express. January 12, 2003. http://www.financialexpress.com/news/modi-steals-the-show-at-pravasi-divas/67951/0. Retrieved April 5, 2009. 
  34. ^ "With Panchamrut, Modi targets 10.2% Growth". The Financial Express. June 9, 2003. http://www.financialexpress.com/news/with-panchamrut-modi-targets-10.2-growth/81673/. Retrieved April 5, 2009. 
  35. ^ a b "Mahatma on lips, Modi fights Centre". The Telegraph. 19 July 2006. http://www.telegraphindia.com/1060719/asp/nation/story_6496620.asp. Retrieved 2008-05-09. 
  36. ^ Now, Amar Singh says Afzal Guru must be hanged
  37. ^ Indo-Asian News Service - Afzal Guru's guilty verdict
  38. ^ Modi wants 3-layer ring to secure coast
  39. ^ http://www.hindu.com/2009/05/27/stories/2009052755431100.htm
  40. ^ BJP Criticism of Modi worries Gujarati leaders
  41. ^ [1]
  42. ^ "Making Up For Lost Time". India Today. http://www.indiatoday.com/itoday/20070212/nation1.html. Retrieved 2006-02-12. 
  43. ^ "Modi wins fDi personality of the year award". Sify. http://sify.com/news/fullstory.php?a=jiznt2hiece&tag=topnews&title=Modi_wins_fDi_personality_of_the_year_award. Retrieved 2009-08-25. 

External links

Preceded by
Keshubhai S. Patel
Chief Minister of Gujarat
6 October 2001 – present
Succeeded by
incumbent

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