To be a strong leader in a democracy is not easy as democracy represents people’s power and justifies itself by curbing that of the rulers.
How then to combine democracy and strong leadership? It can be done by an elected leader who is self-confident, has a vision of the future to offer to the public, comes across as self-less and incorruptible, has administrative capacity and the ability to communicate effectively.
He should be able to clearly define the goals to be achieved, give a sense of direction to the country, infuse the public with a sense of purpose, rouse their will to achieve and strengthen the resolve of the people at large to realise national aspirations.
He has to do this not by fiat but by carrying the people along, giving them hope and confidence in themselves, and generate a sense of optimism at the national level.
Shri Narendra Modi is such a leader, a strong leader that our democracy needs so that the country can achieve its unrealised potential. For him, a country that has played an extraordinary role in the development of human civilisation and possesses enormous intellectual resources, besides the progress it is making economically, should have its rightful place in the world.
He is dealing at the international level with self-assurance and self-confidence of a kind we have not seen for decades.
His ability to create empathetic relations with major world leaders shows his remarkable diplomatic skills.
Unlike most Indian Prime Ministers before him, he is one with real grass root understanding of the needs of India and its people. His personal background, travels across India in his early years, his political rise based not on heritage but performance, the experience gained as the political head of one of the most dynamic states of India has given him the necessary intellectual, political and administrative grounding to lead our vast and complex country.
The many national campaigns he has launched, with his unequalled rhetorical skills, are the products of his deep experience.
Kanwal Sibal, renowned diplomat and former Foreign Secretary