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Ataljee - An Epitome of Good Governance
Ataljee - An Epitome of Good Governance

During the reign of Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the country witnessed growth and good governance. His 6 years as Prime Minister altered political configurations of India. He introduced the ideas of ‘Good Governance’ and ‘Development’ to the national discourse.

In the preamble to the National Agenda for Governance, Ataljee’s had pledged to give good governance. It said, “Our first commitment to the people is to give a stable, honest, transparent and efficient government capable of accomplishing all-round development. For this, the government shall introduce time-bound program of needed administrative reforms, including those for the civil services".

His Midas touch impacted every sectors of governance. His programs and policies demonstrated his commitment to a strong and self-reliant nation to meet the challenges of the next millennium. To make India an economic power in the 21st century, he transformed the economic policy framework. Reforms in sectors like telecommunications, civil aviation, banking, insurance, public sector enterprises, foreign trade and investment, direct and indirect taxes, agricultural produce marketing, small-scale industries reservation, urban land ceilings, highways, rural roads, elementary education, ports, electricity, petroleum prices and interest rates were all subject to far-reaching reforms and raised India’s power graph in the world.

The New Telecom Policy (NTP) announced by the Vajpayee led government of India on 3 March 1999, brought the true Telecom Revolution. The telecom penetration rate increases from less than 3% in 1999 to over 70% as of October 2012. In his book, India—The Emerging Giant, Columbia University’s Professor Arvind Panagariya writes that key policy reforms in telecom sector were implemented by the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government in 1999 that scripted India’s Telecom revolution.

On the infrastructure front, he launched two ambitious projects - National Highway Development Project and Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana - To connect four metros and every village of the nation. These two projects revolutionized not only infrastructure segment but also real estate, commerce, rural economy. The improved road connectivity further integrated our great land through a network of world-class highways which place India on the fast lane to socio-economic development. Indeed, on the highway to prosperity!

His encompassing governance doctrine can also be seen in his strategic vision about national security and foreign policy. This was particularly outlines in the seminal report of Reforming the National Security System in 2001. The establishment of National Security Council, re-evaluation of India’s Nuclear Doctrine, Economic Diplomacy, and Strategic engagement with world has re-written India’s strategic governance system.

His last year of Prime Ministership saw India growing at above 8% with strong fiscal indicators. India was knocking at the door of becoming world power. His legacy as Epitome of Good Governance continued with his followers achieving successes in the field of administration.

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