Modi diplomacy a big hit, but Swachh drive is not | delhi$Front | Hindustan Times
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Modi diplomacy a big hit, but Swachh drive is not

delhi Updated: Jun 07, 2016 12:32 IST

NEW DELHI: The Narendra Modi government appears to be doing better on international diplomacy and modernising the railways than on flagship programmes such as Swachh Bharat and Digital India, feedback from people asked to vote in an online survey shows.

As he completed two years in office, Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited people in May to rate his government’s various initiatives on the government portal mygov.in.

Respondents have to evaluate 15 government programmes, with five stars being the highest rating.

Modi’s ambitious Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, or Clean India campaign, aimed at modernising sanitation got the top rating from only 33% of the respondents.

Public support is crucial for Swachh Bharat that aims to make India free of open defecation by October 2, 2019, the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, by building toilets in rural areas and schools.

“Since Swachh Bharat mission was launched, there has been massive awareness around sanitation. But on the ground a lot need to be done... The Rs 12,000 given by the centre for building individual toilets is not enough,” said Bindeshwar Pathak, head of public sanitation initiative Sulabh International.

The drive to unearth black money, too, hasn’t really impressed. In fact, it scored the lowest among the initiatives put to survey.

’The government’s efforts in tackling black money, both at home and abroad’ got five stars from only 29.18% respondents. Though it has taken a string of measures to check the widespread menace of undisclosed wealth, the government has come under attack from the opposition for not doing enough.

By Monday afternoon, more than 20,000 people had voted in the survey expected to run for at least a couple of weeks if not more.

His political rivals may mock him for his frequent foreign tours, but the initiative has scored big, with 66% of the respondents giving the thumbs up to “the government’s efforts in creating a new world order through a proactive foreign policy”.