"You have to dream before your dreams can come true." This famous quote of former President APJ Abdul Kalam, who himself turned his dream into a reality as a nuclear scientist and has "ignited" many minds with his ideas, is perhaps the most appropriate theme for present day India aspiring to become an economic and knowledge superpower.It is the culmination of the dreams of 1.2 billion people that has led Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ideate his plan of making the $2 trillion economy a $20 trillion behemoth within the next two decades, eradicating poverty and making India a knowledge society.
India is promising an ambitious third generation economic and governance reform. For all of us who want to see a richer, freer and more confident India, we can only hope that they succeed and not lose steam. The change of government in 2014 has brought about a new wave of optimism, rising from the belief that the moment for India to make better progress on the kind of reforms that the country needs - and deserves - has finally arrived.
While six months is too short a period to judge the performance of a new government, Narendra Modi has rolled up his sleeves for a slew of reforms-some have been announced and implemented, some are getting framed and some caught up in administrative, political and legislative tangles.
Narendra Modi government has set an ambitious target to improve India's ranking in ease of doing business to among the top 50 in the next two years. The goal looks very difficult and ambitious because India is ranked at 142 among 189 countries in the latest World Bank's ease of doing business index. In fact, India's ranking has taken a hit in the recent years. It slipped by 11 spot in the past two years.
When we talk of government services, the image of long queues, unending delays, chaotic offices and piles of paper, automatically crops in our mind. This was true for all levels of government - the Centre, the states as well as the local bodies. However, things are changing gradually for better with the use of information and communication technology. Some of the organisations have successfully transformed their way of functioning and service delivery system with the help of modern technology.
Under unavoidable compulsions, the tax reforms have to enter the next phase, since the whole tax structure, as commonly known is still not flawless. So, the government must include various stakeholders in its ambit, to make tax reforms truly thriving on the ground.
India wants to take lead in BRICS, become the favoured destination for FDI, aims to reduce poverty below 20 per cent, skill develop its demographic dividend, financially and digitally include all households and targets to become a higher middle-income country by 2025. But when it comes to healthcare, the situation is not as promising.
It has been a busy schedule for the Modi Government in the past six months in terms of policy initiatives and it is going to be even more hectic in the coming quarters when it gets down to implement those policies to revive the economy, generate employment and pull up millions from poverty.