Adopting Technology

Published By : Admin | September 16, 2016 | 23:52 IST

The year was 1995. The BJP was fresh from having achieved a first ever victory in Gujarat Assembly elections and forming a majority government of its own. Two months later, civic elections were scheduled across the state. As preparations were on in full swing, Modi one day called a few of his trusted, non-party-cadre, aides and gave them a device they had not seen before -  something which he had picked from his recent travel abroad - a Digital Camera. Their task was to go around the state along with the party campaigning teams and digitally record what they saw - people and their expressions, their attires, their habits, attendance in public meetings, what people ate their work places, at tea stalls - digitally capture the essence of Gujarat. This was much before Digital Camera had become popular in the West, leave alone being used in India.

 

It is a habit that Modi has kept even since - of being ahead of the curve in first seeing potential and then adopting the latest technological and digital inventions, not just personally but as a governance model as well. It is no surprise then that not just among politicians, but indeed in the larger society, Modi was the first to see and realize the potential of social media as not just a one-way broadcast medium but one which establishes a two way digital connect of equals.  As CM of Gujarat, social media contributors would find a ready audience with him. As Prime Minister, one of his first initiatives was to institutionalize this connect with the launch of MyGov in July 2014. A year later, 'Digital India' was formally launched as a key signature initiative to usher in a governance model which was responsive, transparent and accountable. Speaking at the Digital India event in San Jose, California in 2015, Modi summed up his philosophy "When you think of the exponential speed and scale of expansion of social media or a service, you have to believe that it is equally possible to rapidly transform the lives of those who have long stood on the margins of hope. So, friends out of this conviction was born the vision of Digital India. It is an enterprise for India's transformation on a scale that is, perhaps, unmatched in human history. Not just to touch the lives of the weakest, farthest and the poorest citizen of India, but change the way our nation will live and work.  "

 

Disclaimer:

It is part of an endeavour to collect stories which narrate or recount people’s anecdotes/opinion/analysis on Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi & his impact on lives of people.

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The Desert's Thirst and CM Modi’s Promise: A Story of Water and Resolve
December 20, 2023

It was New Year’s Day 2009. The unforgiving sun beat down on the parched sands of the Indo-Pak border in Gujarat in the Rann of Kutch. On this day, amidst the desolate landscape, Chief Minister Narendra Modi had arrived. His presence, a beacon of hope in the arid expanse, brought more than just news from the mainland. Shri Modi has always made it a point to spend important dates in the year with the armed forces personnel, and this year was no different.

He sat with the jawans, sharing stories and laughter. But beneath the camaraderie, a concern gnawed at him. He learned of their daily ordeal – the gruelling 50-kilometre journey conducted daily for water tankers to carry water from Suigam, the nearest village with potable supply, to the arid outpost.

The Chief Minister listened intently, his brow furrowed in concern. Shri Modi, a man known for his resolve, replied in the affirmative. He pledged to find a solution and assured the Jawans that he would bring them drinking water. Pushpendra Singh Rathore, the BSF officer who escorted Shri Modi to the furthermost point of the border, Zero Point, recalls that CM Modi took only 2 seconds to agree to the BSF jawans’ demands and made the bold claim that ‘today is 01 January – you will receive potable drinking water, through pipelines, within 6 months’.

Rathore explains that the Rann of Kutch is known for its sweltering and saline conditions and that pipelines typically cannot survive in the region. He recalls that some special pipelines were brought by Shri Modi from Germany to solve the problem. Exactly 6 months after the promise, in June, a vast reservoir was constructed near the BSF camp and water was delivered to it by the new pipeline.

The story of Shri Modi's visit to the border isn’t just about water; it is about trust and seeing a leader who listens, understands, and delivers. A leader whose guarantees are honoured.