Here’s How Indians Are Rating Narendra Modi’s Programs – India Real Time – WSJ

Two years into his five-year term, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is asking his countrymen to rate a series of initiatives undertaken by his government.

Among the top scorers so far: an effort expand and modernize the railways and a program to build more roads. Toward the bottom of the favorability rankings: Mr. Modi’s Clean India campaign, which, among other things, aims to get people to use toilets instead of defecating outside.

Mr. Modi has become known for introducing a series of high-profile initiatives, from Make in India, which seeks to promote manufacturing, to pledges to build scores of so-called smart cities across the country.Of 21,770 respondents who had participated in the online survey on the government’s website as of Tuesday morning, 70% gave a five-star rating to the government’s efforts to upgrade the rail system. People are asked to grade programs on a scale of one to five.

In the latest federal budget, the government earmarked $17 billion to improve the state-run railroad. Wi-Fi services are being rolled out at stations. And late last year, a deal was struck with Japan to help build India’s first high-speed rail line between Mumbai and Ahmedabad.

The government’s efforts to build more highways and improve the condition of roadways have also been popular with the people. More than 65% of the respondents to the survey gave these initiatives a five-star rating. The target this year is to build 9,300 miles of highways.People taking the survey also seemed satisfied by the government’s attempts to make electricity more accessible.

One of the worst performing programs, according to the current results of the survey, which is ongoing, is Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan, or the Clean India Mission. Only 33% of the respondents gave it a five-star rating. About 16% gave it score of one or two.

India’s Competitiveness and Prosperity Rankings Rise Under ModiIn October, a year into the program, another national survey also hinted at the public’s disappointment with its impact. More the 70% of those polled in that survey said the availability of public toilets hadn’t improved and their cities hadn’t become cleaner.

Mr. Modi is no stranger to crowdsourcing. He regularly encourages Indians to submit their thoughts for his weekly radio show. Prior to delivering his speech on India’s Independence Day last year, he asked citizens to submit their suggestions on what they’d like to hear him speak about. And they did, in hordes.

Source: Here’s How Indians Are Rating Narendra Modi’s Programs – India Real Time – WSJ


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