As clichéd as it may sound, it is true that winners don’t do different things, they just do things differently. Just 2 years back, the crown prince of the House of Gandhis was screaming atop a podium, demanding for 12 cylinders per family. For a party which is fueled by Pseudo-Secularism and Populism, this was nothing just another poll-time gimmick. Modi enthused the tax ridden middle class with hope unlike anything seen before. The Middle class was glued by Modi’s charms. And now the same middle class which voted Modi to power is voluntarily giving up gas subsidy.
More than 1 crore LPG consumers have given up their cooking gas subsidy in one year since Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a call to the well-heeled to give up the same. This, in my humble opinion is the empowerment of the purest kind. Here is what Modi had to say about the success of the GiveItUp Campaign.
My dear fellow citizens, Namaskar!
My dear fellow citizens, I now wish to talk about something that will compel us all to think. I view it also as something that is going to shake us all. You must have seen for yourself that the political situation in our country is such that in the previous elections political parties made promises of giving each household 9 to 12 gas cylinders. And each political party felt that if they had to politically approach the middle class society, then gas cylinder was a major issue. On the other hand, economists have put constant pressure to reduce the subsidy on gas cylinders. For this reason, many committees would sit which would receive many proposals and suggestions on the issue of lessening the gas subsidy. Crores of rupees would be spent on these committees. But the matter would remain at a standstill. This has been everybody’s experience. No one ever thought beyond this.
Today, my dear fellow citizens, I have utmost pleasure in placing before you all my own account on this. I have chosen the third way out and that is the path of placing trust and confidence in the people and the masses. At times we political leaders should trust our people more than we trust ourselves. We should have implicit faith in the people. I had once said to you that if you can bear the expense of 1500-2000 rupees per year, then why don’t you give up your gas subsidy? This could be of use to poor households. I had said it just like that, but today I can say with confidence that I am indeed very proud of you all. One crore families have voluntarily given up their gas subsidy. These one crore are not wealthy families. Among them are retired teachers, retired clerks, farmers, small shopkeepers. These are middle class and lower middle class families that have given up their gas subsidy. Now look at the other, rather unique, side of it. They could have given up their gas subsidy through the App on their mobile, going online or by giving a missed call over the telephone. There were many options. But it has been estimated that more than 80% of these one crore families chose to go to the distributor, stand in a queue and give in writing that they wish to surrender their gas subsidy.
My dear fellow citizens, this is not a small matter. If the government gives even a small concession on tax or exemption from tax, then for a whole week we hear praise for that government being splashed on TV channels and in newspapers.
Here, these one crore families have given up their gas subsidy. And in our country subsidy has turned into a kind of a right that people expect. A thing like that they have chosen to give up.
I would like to salute those one crore families. I humbly bow to them because they have compelled political leaders to think of coming up with something new. This has also forced the economists of the country to think differently. Even the global economic experts who used to live in a world of their calculations would find this phenomenon to be beyond their limits of traditional wisdom. At some point of time they will also have to think of this novel experience that has defied conventional thinking. One crore families giving up their subsidy on gas cylinders and in return one crore poor families getting gas cylinders with the money that is saved from the one crore families that have given up their gas subsidy. Externally, it appears just an incident but, its extraordinary lesson is that if you place faith in the people, it leads to most handsome achievements.
I would like to specially appeal to the entire political class to place implicit faith in the people. That will fetch such terrific results that one could have never ever imagined. We should move in this direction. I have always felt this way, like when I felt why Class 3 and Class 4 employees should be made to go through interviews. We should trust the person who has given the exams and submitted the marks.
Modi’s statement Source: http://www.narendramodi.in/