HOME > SOCIETY > POLITICS > COLUMN: Why Modi will be a better PM than Nehru

COLUMN: Why Modi will be a better PM than Nehru

modi-japan-nehru

Every ideologically driven person — whether leftist (love everyone), or rightist (trust none) — must eventually learn to understand and incorporate the other side to become a successful leader.

Looking at Narendra Modi’s actions since taking over three months, one can safely say that the Indian Prime Minister has made that transition to a large extent. Latest proof comes in the form of pictures from Japan.

Modi, who has been a ‘iron man’ for his rightist followers, is seen pulling a schoolboy’s ear, jumping into a drum-beating contest with a ceremonial drummer, trying his hand at a Soprano and generally doing the kind of things the followers of his ‘tough’ persona would term ‘soft’ or unbecoming of a ‘tough leader’.

Of course, we should be less surprised since he chose an invitation to Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif to visit India as his first major decision after becoming PM.

But that was seen as an exception, not only by his followers, but also by his detractors who expected him to reveal his ‘real intentions’ later.

But with the Japan visit, Modi has sent his followers and his detractors a message – he’s neither a rightist, nor a leftist, but a ‘forwardist’. His job is not to take the country left or right, but to take it forward towards progress.

If his tough guy persona is a impediment to achieving this, he is willing to let go of it and come across as a balanced leader who looks forward, not sideways.

It is not an easy thing to do – to overcome your ideological roots, and Modi deserves credit for doing so. Jawaharlal Nehru, who many consider to be the greatest Prime Minister of India, totally failed to overcome his leftist, love-all ideological baggage and become a balanced leader. As a result, when China attacked India, it was not just a political setback, but also a personal failure for Nehru.

India had to pay dearly for Nehru’s inability to step out of his leftist outlook. While a state-oriented economy helped to create crucial infrastructure in the initial phase, the ‘socialist’ arrangement helped stifle India’s entrepreneurial spirit, a mistake that the country is still paying for.

Modi would be making a similar mistake if he’d taken a typically rightist (trust no-one) approach. Instead, Modi has sought a beautiful balance, the Golden Mean, as the Buddha said.

In that sense, Modi is above Nehru. He has shown the ability to appreciate the other side and incorporate the best of both worlds to achieve the right balance of friendliness and adversariality, of trust and caution, of love and toughness.

Of course, this has upset many of his rightist followers. Many are feeling restless. Many feel that Modi needs to take some ‘tough actions’, put the ‘enemies’ in their place and generally show everyone, once again, who’s boss.

But Modi is not the Modi-bhakt’s prime minister. He’s India’s prime minister, even if all of India did not vote for him. As India’s leader, his job is to take the whole country forward, to promote the welfare of the nation as a whole, not just that of those who voted for him.

It is difficult to achieve this. And it is time for everyone across the ideological spectrum, rightists or leftists, to acknowledge his efforts.

Follow ULTRA.news
Ahmedabad cops deny permission to roadshow by Modi, Rahul The Ahmedabad administration has denied permission to the 'roadshows' planned by Rahul Gandhi and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Ahmedabad tomorrow.The separate roadshows would have featured Modi and Rahul Gandhi traversing the city in a last minute effort to boost their res...
I am low-caste, but I do high work – Modi replies to Aiyer Mani Shankar Aiyar tried to undo the damage he caused to the party's prospects in Gujarat by calling Narendra Modi -- who hails from a group classified under the Other Backward Communities -- 'neech' (low or low-caste), but Modi sought to take advantage of the controversy by sei...
COLUMN: A win for Congress in Gujarat may be just what Modi needs By all accounts, the chances of a Congress victory is becoming stronger and stronger in Gujarat, a state that goes to the polls on Sunday.The possibility was almost unthinkable two months ago, even to Congress strategists, but the 'Patel factor' is likely to be the deciding ...
DOKLAM 2: Why India is not sending troops to stop Chinese construction Doklam is in the news again, 40 days after the Chinese pulled back their construction equipment on the border plateau in deference to Indian sensitivities.With two weeks to go for the crucial National Congress of the Communist Party of China, India's northern neighbor has aga...
After Doklam, Modi confirms attendance at BRICS summit, to visit Myanmar Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit China to attend the upcoming conference of the BRICS forum on September 3-5, the Prime Minister's Office said today.On the way back, he will also conduct a three-day visit to Myanmar, it added."At the invitation of the Presi...
Modi’s reforms drag, power plants to face low loads, study India’s energy sector is facing low capacity utilisation in power generation as plant load factor is estimated to remain low at around 62 per cent until 2018-19, noted a recent ASSOCHAM-Crisil joint study.The study also expressed concern over the slow pace of reform implement...
More OBCs to get reservation: Creamy layer limit relaxed to 8 lakh More families belonging to the Other Backward Classes or OBCs will now be eligible to get benefits of reservation in government jobs and educational institutions after the government raised the income limit for such benefits.Under the new rules, candidates from households wit...
UPDATE: 99% of demonetized currency returned to govt Eight months on, the Reserve Bank of India is yet to finish verifying and counting the 500- and 1000-rupee notes surrendered by the public between Nov 8 and Dec 30, 2016, the finance ministry said in a statement on Aug 11.UPDATE: About ten days after this article was publishe...
India draws closer to US under Modi, to restart ‘COPE INDIA’ The Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance government of India is ramping up defense cooperation with the United States, and will restart COPE INDIA, a mock combat exercise between the US and Indian Air Force.COPE INDIA was first conducted in 2004, and subsequently in...
Nitish, Lalu and the ‘Post Truth’ Politics of Bihar In the so-called 'post truth' politics, facts and ideology do not have a place - it is emotion and rhetoric that counts.When Nitish Kumar decided to part ways with Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in late 2013 opposing the elevation of Narendra Modi as the prime ministerial cand...
There’s no Lokpal because there’s no opposition leader, says govt Lokpal act was passed after massive demonstrations in 2013The Prime Minister's office today said the government has not appointed a Lokpal at the center yet as there is no leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha.According to the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act passed in 2013...
Arvind Kejriwal protests after Twitter cracks down on AAP accounts Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal took to his account to protest the deletion of several AAP accounts after the social media company changed its anti-abuse algorithm.Three days ago, Twitter had said that it was putting in more safeguards against abuse and manipulation on...
Venture Capital firms seek validation for Modi’s policies in UP election BJP leader Uma Bharti at an election rallyPrivate equity and venture capital firms are largely bullish on India in the context of big economic reforms, but are awaiting the results of the ongoing Uttar Pradesh elections to assess the level of popular support that such polici...
Modi denies demonetization was a failure Prime Minister Narendra Modi today denied that the withdrawal of high-value currency notes was a failure.Speaking in the lower house of Parliament today, Modi said demonetization has created a money trail that can be used to 'bring everyone into the mainstream' of taxation....
Katju says SP will defeat BJP in UP Elections; Demonetization, Akhilesh to aid Former Supreme Court judge and a keen observer of Indian politics, Markandey Katju has predicted a win for the Samajwadi Party led by Akhilesh Yadav in the upcoming Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections.BJP, which is seen as a strong contender by many, would be negatively impacted...
Demonetization: Modi announces bumper prizes; 15 lakh users to get 1,000 rupees Narendra Modi announced several 'prize schemes' to promote cashless transactions.Under the schemes announced today, there will be two sets of prizes for consumers and another for small merchants.Under the first scheme, any customer who uses any electronic form of payment,...
Modi says people who deposited others’ money may get to keep it all Opening a new front in the fight against black money, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said people who were forced or tricked into depositing other people's money into their bank accounts may be allowed to keep the entire sum for themselves."Do not touch that money," Modi s...
BJP asks all MPs, MLAs to submit bank statement to party As part of the ongoing crackdown on tax evasion and illicit funds, the Bharatiya Janata Party has asked all its MPs and MLAs to submit the full details of their banking transactions from Nov 8 onwards.The central leadership of the party will examine the bank statements of the...
PM Modi’s official Twitter account gets ambushed by AAP For long, the Bharatiya Janata Party held the upper hand on Twitter -- which -- along with comment boards on news websites -- forms the 'wild west' of political online campaigning in India with large-scale manipulation, 'fake' accounts, bullying and targeted attacks.Not to be...
DEMONETIZATION: How some earned lakhs standing in queues The government has banned over-the-counter exchange of old 500- and 1000-rupee notes due to suspected gaming of the system by those with black money. According to banking industry sources, the over-the-counter exchange system was being massively misused by hawala operators and ot...