Two years are not adequate to deliver a verdict on a government, especially one that has set many goals well beyond its five-year tenure. Yet, there are a few markers that stand out.
When many parts of the developed world are struggling to avoid slipping back into contraction, India is pulling ahead at more than 7.4% and regaining its lost status as an engine of global growth.
It has laid out the red carpet for foreign investors with a string of initiatives such as ‘Make in India’, announced measures to eliminate the red tape and hasten decision making.
Fuel prices have been decontrolled; foreign investment norms in insurance and other sectors have been eased; a new bankruptcy code is in place, a law enacted to protect consumers from opaque realty deals and a new coal allocation policy implemented. Yet, there are hurdles.
The government continues to grapple with the challenge of creating jobs for millions of young people who join the workforce every year. And face a deepening rural distress due to droughts in 2014 and 2015.
The past two years have also been peppered with controversial events. The killing of scholar MM Kalburgi, the lynching of a Muslim man in Dadri for allegedly storing beef, the return of Sahitya Akademi awards by eminent writers protesting intolerance and student unrest in university campuses have prompted probing questions from the intelligentsia and the political opposition. There is still a vast unfinished reforms agenda that needs acceleration. This will require bi-partisan parliamentary support and a less hostile political environment.
Hindustan Times takes a look at the two years of the NDA government.