The numbers came out today, and India's economy grew at an impressive 7.4% in the second quarter of fiscal 2015-2016. The growth in manufacturing was an even more impressive 9.3%. These figures even beat China during the same time frame.
This is a boom-time for the world's largest democracy. India is coming out of a period of slow economic growth in the last decade or so, compounded by corruption run amuck in the federal government, and scandals galore from the coal scam to the land-grab kerfuffle of the Congress party-led coalition government. Since Mr. Narendra Modi came to power in 2014 with an overwhelming majority in the Lok Sabha (the lower House in the bicameral legislature), there has been steady growth in India's GDP. The manufacturing industry has kept pace with the GDP growth, and has resulted in the remarkable figures that I quoted above.
But even more impressive has been Modi's global presence. In a short span of approximately eighteen months, he has visited more countries and met with more world leaders than any other Prime Minister in India's history. He has even been featured on Time magazine's cover page. In 2014, Forbes ranked him no. 15 in its list of the world's most powerful people. It is no mean feat that leaders in the technology sector, such as Mark Zuckerberg, have hosted town halls with him, and spoken so highly of his vision for a more technologically connected world, with India playing a pivotal role in its creation and sustenance.
Modi's stance on terrorism is noteworthy also. He has made it very clear to Pakistan that any encroachment on India's sovereign territory will not be taken lightly by his administration. If there was hesitancy in dealing with terrorist outfits in the past, there is now a surefootedness and agility that has won adulation from military leaders. As recently as today, on the sidelines of the global climate summit in Paris, Mr. Modi even reached out to Nawaz Sharif, Pakistan's Prime Minister, to discuss bilateral ties.
And then there are his visionary projects, "Swachh Bharat" (A cleaner India) and the "Make in India" initiative to bolster India's manufacturing and services sectors, and to provide millions of well-paying jobs to Indians of all hues and economic classes. India has a dynamic leader in Mr. Modi after a long time, one whom the world reveres, and whom Indians everywhere hold in high esteem. What he has accomplished in less than two years of being Prime Minister is a sure sign that he is the right leader at the right time for India and the world right now. We all wait in anticipation of more to come from this charismatic chaiwallah (son of a tea-seller)!!!