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banking. But as the prime minister says in a candid interaction, preceded by an extensive e-mail interview, to Group Editorial Director Raj Chengappa, “one must
aPnIdLrOanT-nIiNti distinguish between niti (policy) tion strategy or tactical manoeuvres). Demonetisation, which reflects our niti, is unequivocally clear, unwavering and categorical. Our ran-ni ti, haocwheinvePri,lowtalosv‘eTsuto daal-daal, main paat-paat’. We muscthsatallyentwgeoVsatseupnsdhara ahead of the enemy’’. Altruism isRnaojtetihneJhsoalaewdarri-vBearroafn, the prime minister’s relentless setahrechRafojarsitnhnanovCaMtiv’seerstthew2h0i0le2LroioktSs,ahbehaspseant decisions. After the horror of now the next 12 years of his tenure asreGpurjeasreanttcehdiebfymheinr isso-n. ter transforming the state into a mPiolodteglootfRdaehvuelloGpamndehnitto and himself into an icon of progreBsasr.aMn odni2h6aDs eaclwemaybser to been conscious about his place inahdidsrteosrsy,amn oanreti-sdoesminocneetisation he became prime minister. rally, but also made
No wonder he’s launched oneitgaropuonindt-tboret arkgientgthe CM scheme after another. At last coufnotr, ‘hfaeilhinagd’ tahnenvoutenrcse.d here was little debate amongst India Today editors on who would be Newsmaker of 2016. Even before the fateful day of November 8, he ahul Gandhi haswoaftseninptlhaeyeledaad, but his D-bomb spoiler for Lalu Ysaedaalevd. Iint.2In01230,16, no one dominwaitehdrthewe the UPA government caonuntry’s discourse ordinance proposingaimndmiunnfliutyenfocerd the lives of its convicted MPs and MpLeAospaleftmeroRreahthual n Prime Minister
It cNoasrteLnadlurahMisoLdoik. He kept the Sabha seat after the convictionmedia busy in by the ordering a surgicaflosdtdriekresocnamPa. kInisthane 2O0c1cu4pLioedk SKabshamir as a reprisal fopr otellrcraomr aptataigcnk,sR, haehudlid indont’texshteanrde the term of poster botyheRdBaI igsowveitrhnLoralRua. gAhueraadmofRtahjean20in15spite of a chorus ofBsiuhpaproerlte,chteiodnisd, nhoetbsaucckceudmNbitioshthe rage of veterans onKtuhme aimr pfolermCMen.tBatuiot nreocfeOnntley,RLanlukpOunte Pension, and hethsecodrieffderaennucenspraescideedeantdedtwweientefodritnhe BJP in Assam. AsRIanhduial’’ssFuiprsptoDrtipinlohmisato,nhgeotirnagvsepllaetd to 18 countries, inwcliutdhinNgarfievnedirnaEMasotdai nodveSrocuotrhreuapstioAnsia, altering the fochuas rogfeosu. rAPfarikeinstdasnh-icpeintrtihceinmtearkninagti?onal relations and hard-selling India’s image from red tape to red carpet. He lobbied for India’s entry into the NSG even though he was stymied in his efforts by China. In 2016, he was on the India Today cover five times.
timINes In all, India Today has had him on the cover 36 (one more than Indira Gandhi and five less than Sonia Gandhi). He has been newsmaker of the year twic e before, once in 2002 and a second time in 2014. In the Banerjee time we have been chronicling his journey, it is grcaatiufyg-ht ing to see certain campaign promises come throuignhW, whether it is in the large-scale implementation ofKthuemar, Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana or the weedingTohuatdoef, corruption from the Centre. Some other big-ticket have been highly publicised, such as Make in Indiraeacenndtly. minimum governance, but not adequately executed. SP chBiueft MthuelapyraimeSminignhisYtaedr’asvv’siswioifnehas been clear from StahdehbaengainYnaidnagv.AistkhnioswfinrsttoIcnodnefpineenhdernsceelfDay speech in to20fa1m4,ilyPrfuimncetMioninsi.sBteurt Mono2d4ihDaedcedmesbcerri,bed himself as the shneatmioand’seParnaedxhcaenptSioenvabky,caanmdpdaeicglnairnegdfothr at he wanted dtaoupguhtearn-ine-nladwtoApthaerncau,lwtuifreeooffM‘mulearyaamky’sa, mujhe kya’. yoItuwngaesrnsootnaPsrlaotgeaenk,. Aaspamrnaanyisicmoangteinsetidn,gbut a promfriosem. PLaurctkinciopwatCivaengt onvmerennmt einnthhea2s0b1e7cUoPme the corneresletoctnioenosf.hItiswailldbmeitnoiustgrhatsieoant,,egvivideennttheinSpPo’slicies such naos-wSiwn arecchohrdBheareaat,nsdchtheemoepspsouncehnat sbeGiinvge It Up by the thmeiBniJsPtr’syRoiftapeBtarhouleguumnaaJnodshnia. tural gas, and in great disruptions like demonetisation. It is a long-term cultural remaking project. And it pivots on the prime minister’s individual popularity. When he says he is a fakir who will pack his bags and move on if and when the time comes, much of India believes him.
That is both Prime Minister Modi’s strength and weakness. His high personal popularity has given him as Delhi from all as Mumbai
the courage to take Tataa decisionGroup without any apparentCricket lieutenant governor short-term payoff. cIotmmpanyieaslso have blinded hAismsoctoiation the potential pitfalls arising out of poor implepmreseidnetnattion. In his urge to transform India, he overestimated the state’s capacity to deliver an essential service like
ROUtRraNsEhWeSdMtAhKeERmove. 2014 COVER