The Telegraph
Tuesday , September 2 , 2014
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BJP’s 100-day chorus: Yes, he can

Narendra Modi in Tokyo on Monday. (PTI)

New Delhi, Sept. 1: The BJP is expected to highlight Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “radical” style of functioning and knack for “specifics” as he completes 100 days in office on September 3.

His “ability” to reshape the bureaucratic “steel frame” and bring it in sync with contemporary requirements of governance, too, will get enough airing.

After its full-throated backing for the Modi government’s Jan Dhan Yojana, the BJP is gearing to propagate the “achievements” of his first few weeks, a party official said.

It will emphasise Modi’s “distinctive tendency to break with the past and look ahead, instead of just dwelling on the UPA’s mistakes”, he added.

For the BJP, the big message emerging from Modi’s first 100 days has been “Yes, he can”— a play on Barack Obama’s “Yes, we can”.

“Look at the way he has changed the mindset of the administration. He has controlled the bureaucracy and curtailed unnecessary expenses the officers used to incur,” a source said.

“He has raised their accountability. The officers and their staff are reporting at the appointed hour after Modiji’s ministers conducted surprise checks on their offices.”

Several party members cited an example of Modi’s penchant for going into the nitty-gritty of programmes.

“When he stressed the importance of MPs spending their local area development funds for the benefit of their constituents, he didn’t just speak in generic terms,” a source said.

“He went into details of how the money should be spent. Previous Prime Ministers spoke of corporate social responsibility in general terms; our PM spelt out the details of implementing it.”

However, while dwelling on Modi’s “positive” governance, nobody in the BJP wished to take questions on how he planned to deal with the rising prices of essentials and the looming drought threat.

“People understand that a government can’t work miracles in a few weeks,” a general secretary said.

“Our focus will be on optimism, to project Modiji as someone not shackled by the political bitterness of the past. He had said that once the election campaign was over, that chapter would stand closed and we must look forward.”

Modi’s efforts to “re-imagine” India globally as a “power” on the march is another point the BJP plans to highlight.

“His image is not confined to India. Look at the reception he has got wherever he has travelled: Nepal, Bhutan and now Japan,” gushed a source.