Modi warns: Nation has to pay price for innovative reforms like Demonetisation

New Delhi, November 30: Prime Minister Narendra Modi kicked off the 15th edition of the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit in partnership with CNN-News18, touching upon reforms like demonetisation and Aadhaar for benefits undertaken by his government, saying he was ready to pay the “political price” for them.

The summit, over the years, has been a part of several crucial announcements and talks by political leaders and personalities.

The theme, according to Hindustan Times, is being hosted against the backdrop of reforms such as the Goods and Services Tax, sovereign ratings upgrade by Moody’s and India’s nominee to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) being re-elected as a judge.

The HT Leadership Summit 2017 began at the Ballroom of the Hyatt Regency in New Delhi.


Highlights of Modi’s speech:

  • Jan Dhan Yojna, Ujjwala Yojna and Swachh Bharat have brought about far reaching changes in poor people’s lives.
  • Demonetisation has resulted in behavioural change in people. For the first time, corrupt people are scared of consequences.
  • Aadhaar number is preventing frauds.
  • ENAM has enabled farmers to sell their products through digital platforms.

Modi said that if he were to talk about the Jan Dhan Yojana, it has brought far-reaching changes in poor people’s lives. Earlier, a poor person was shooed away from banks, now, they have their own bank accounts. Similarly, the Ujjwala Yojana has forever changed the lives of women, who have not just got a free gas connection but also got more time for their families and to look after their health. Through Swachh Bharat, the government has not only created toilets but also relieved the pain of millions of daughters. The masses know how far reaching the changes are.

“Our diplomacy has changed the world for better. When Bhutan suffered due to an earthquake, Sri Lanka with floods, Maldives was hit by water shortage, India rushed to help. When Yemen was in trouble, India not only saved 400 of its citizens, it also helped around 2000 people from other nationalities,” says PM Narendra Modi.

“Look at what happened at the International Court of Justice. When people look closely, they’ll realise that India’s success has brought a change in the way that the world thinks about us. When on India’s insistence, an international solar alliance was created. That is irreversible change,” said Modi.

Modi went on to defend Demonetisation which has been criticised on several grounds. It has brought about behavioural change among people, he believes. After independence it is for the first time that corrupt people are afraid of getting caught.

“If we didn’t go right to the grass roots-level and work there, if we hadn’t worked on transparency and last-mile connectivity, then would all of this have been possible? The whole system has to be changed, only then, does a country go from 142 to 100 in the Ease of Doing Business ranking.”

“I know that these steps I have taken, the path I have chosen, will end up with me paying a political price but I am ready for this,” says PM Narendra Modi.

Irreversible change has been brought through Aadhaar number. It is a means which the government is using to help secure and subsidies to poor. Frauds used to be committed, fake names were being used for subsidies and benefits. Action is now being taken against all of them. On one hand the poor had problems opening bank accounts, on the other, the companies were opening thousands of fake accounts. All those who have been found guilty, have been charged. Now, departments are working together. Earlier, corruption was looked at like good manners. People voted for us to permanentely fix this failing health of the country.

“Digital platforms have been introduced to allow farmers to sell their produce. ENAM (Electronic National Agricultural Market) have connected 450 mandis with this system. It will help farmers get due price for their crop. The government has decided to spend around Rs 6000 crore in food parks, food processing and modern techniques related to peripherals around farmers.”, he said

By Prerna Chatterjee with Agency inputs