Atal Bihari Bajpayee – PM, poet, statesman, gentleman, The only Non-Congress Minister who got the opportunity to serve the country for the complete five years. His end came at 5.05 pm when All India Institute of Medical announced that Vajpayee had died despite all efforts to save him. he will be cremated at 4 pm at Rashtriya Smriti Sthal between Shanti Van and Vijay Ghat.
During his tenure, he brought major economic reforms in the country. One of the most important was to continue on the economic path that was actually started by the government of PV Narasimha Rao in the year 1991. Even when Manmahon Singh took the position of Prime Minister from Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the economic condition was in its best shape. The reason was well defined by Bajpayee itself. He said once; “Empowering individual means empowering the nation. And empowerment is best served through rapid economic growth with rapid social change.”
Though there are so many economic achievements that were noticed in his tenure, here are some of the major contributions that he had on the Indian economy.
It is quite understood that connectivity is the main reason why some of the major developments can either flourish or can come to an end. The former Minister knew this thing very deeply and hence two of the most important projects that he launched was that of Pradhanmantri Gramin Sadak Yojna and the Golden Quadrilateral.
As per this project, the four metropolitan cities, Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, and Kolkata were connected through various highway channels. These highways were connected to some such villages that did not have any direct connections with the cities. Both the projects came up to be a huge success and contributed a huge amount to the growth of the Indian economy.
Some of the projects and idea of the Minister also attracted some great controversies. One such project was that of privatization of the businesses. Vajpayee made sure that he wanted to reduce down the role of the government in some of the business sectors and hence privatized these areas. Some of the areas that can be named here are Hindustan Zinc, Bharat Aluminum Company, VSNL, and Indian Petrochemicals Corporation Limited. This actually set a tone to the role of the government in the future. It can be also said that Bajpayee was very much sure about what initiatives he was taking and how it is going to develop the Indian economy.
There are so many such initiatives that the government took in his reign that directly provided a growth to the economy of the country. The introduction of the Fiscal Responsibility Act was one of them. The main aim of the Act was to reduce down the fiscal deficit. As a result, it developed the savings of the public sectors. As per the statistics, the GDP of -0.8% grew up to 2.3% from the financial year 2000 to 2005.
The telecom industry is one of the most important sectors today in daily life. Hence, the Minister took an initiative where the license fees for the telecom firms were revolutionized. The fixed fees now were changed to an arrangement of revenue sharing. Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd came into existence soon that separated service provision and policy formulation. Also, the Telecom Dispute Settlement Appellate Tribunal was created that again separated the roles of dispute settlement and regulation of the government.
Apart from these eminent steps, another major step was taken that also affected the economy in a much positive way. The monopoly of VSNL or the Videsh Sanchar Nigam Ltd was ended for the purpose of international calls.
Any country cannot develop and prosper without proper education. Hence, in order to develop and grow the economic condition of the country, it was quite important to focus on the literacy program. This was done by the project of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.
This was a social work done by the Minister that of course, had an impact on the economic growth of the country. All children in between the age group of 6 years to 14 years were provided with the elementary education that was free. This came up to be a huge success as with the time period of just 4 years from the year 2001, the number of school going children increased to about 60%.
When education is being promoted, of course, science and research also come into the picture. Mr Bajpayee passed the project named Chandrayan-1 on the 56th Independence Day. It is India’s own spacecraft that travelled to the moon in the year 2008.
Again, in the year 1998, under his governance, India conducted about five nuclear tests in a single week. This initiative made India much stronger than before as it also became a nuclear weapon state similar to the USA and other powerful states. Though these projects did not have any direct connection to the economy of the country, it played a major role in highlighting the name of the country in the World map.
Apart from these many initiatives taken by the Minister, there were many more things that helped in the development of the country during his reign. The disputes with China were reduced to quite some extent improving the trade business. The cold war with the USA also came to an end in the year 2000.
The former Minister tried his best to improve the relations between India and Pakistan. He took two major steps in this regards. One was of inviting Pervez Musharraf to India, who was the president of Pakistan at that time. They had a meeting where they had a detailed discussion to curb the terrorism and talk about the Kashmir issue. Also, Mr Bajpayee started the Delhi-Lahore bus service in the year 1999 to improve the connectivity between both the countries.
Hence, it can be said that our former prime minister Mr Atal Bihari Bajpayee not only impacted positively the Indian economy but also developed in the country in other ways.