Politically, PM Narendra Modi remains virtually unassailable with opposition decimated and his credibility level still high. During the last three years his government has managed to remain by and large taint free. By the time UPA-2 had reached this landmark it had become lame duck, hit by one scandal after another and the government’s credibility touching the nadir.
Generally anti-incumbency sets in by the time a government completes three years. But not so with Narendra Modi – led NDA government. The Prime Minister, despite a few setbacks like OBOR, has reasons to be happy.
Politically, he remains virtually unassailable with opposition decimated and his credibility level still high. During the last three years his government has managed to remain by and large taint free.
By the time UPA-2 had reached this landmark it had become lame duck hit by one scandal after another and the government’s credibility touching the nadir. With no such concerns Modi has concentrated on strengthening BJP’s support base by winning one election after another.
The biggest victory, by far, has been the steamrolling of the opposition in Uttar Pradesh where the BJP has formed the government with a brute majority and installed a hardliner as the chief minister. To his credit Yogi Adityanath has, so far, been up to the scratch.
Importantly Modi’s communication skills have ensured that he continues to enjoy huge popularity. His government media machinery that is forever in the overdrive continues to project a larger than life image of him.
But much of this is optics and atmospherics. Many analysts believe that an impartial assessment of his government’s achievements shows that claims are not always matched by the reality on the ground. Modi may have succeeded to a great extent in checking corruption but the lives of ordinary Indian have not changed much.
One of his biggest failures has been in Jammu and Kashmir and in combating the threat of Maoist violence. The situation in the valley, in fact, has worsened, since the days of UPA government. Even women and girls, who had hitherto shied away from hitting the streets, are now joining men in fighting pitched battles with police and paramilitary forces. The images of young girls hurling stones at the police are anything but disturbing.
If things continue in this vein Pakistan would be able to realize its nefarious designs of turning Kashmir into an international issue sooner than later, more so with Trump administration in Odisha evincing interest in the affairs of the valley.
The situation on the Maoist front is equally bad. If the recent ambush in Chhatisgarh that left 24 CRPF jawans is any indication things are getting out of control. The Red rebels are striking almost at will with paramilitary forces patrolling the naxal-belt showing a proclivity to be caught by surprise.
The situation is equally bad in Odisha where the rebels ramp up violence every now and then. Though the police have had a few successes against them, the Maoists still appear to have an upper hand in the battle for supremacy with the security forces.
On these fronts the Modi government needs to make special efforts because in the coming days its image within the country and outside would depend on it. Apart from this, the general track record of the government has been quite satisfactory. So it is still advantage Modi.