Will Demonetization & GST become a major downfall for Modi in 2017 Gujarat Assembly Election and 2019 elections?
Demonetization & GST have been undoubtedly one of the biggest steps taken by the Modi led BJP government and they seem to have become a major issue that is going to work against BJP in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
Demonetization was brought into action on the 8th of November, 2016 with a view that it will curb the existence of black money in the market and help the government to pinpoint the defaulters. The entire nation was shocked as Modi in an unscheduled telecast declared that all the old notes will be no longer valid expect at few public places. The situation in the next few days was just chaotic. The banks were closed and those who were away from home or short of hundred and fifty rupees notes were left completely helpless and stranded. Still, people had hope that their suffering was not worthless as it was for a better cause. Demonetization not only aimed at removing the black money but also at stopping the counterfeit currency present in the market. Although it was pretty evident from the way things worked out that the government was not ready to handle the situation and not much taught was put while making the policy. Almost every day new policies were made by the government as it tried to rectify the flaws in order to help the people who were put in a really bad situation.
Many promises were made by the government that demonetization will revolutionize the system and help the nation to get on the right track but when everything was settled it felt as if the entire thing was a facade. More than hundred people died while standing in long queues in order to get there own money. The major sufferers were the poor villagers who were not able to change their money and carry on their work as there was very less cash available in the bank itself. The labors were forced to work at lower prices as there was hardly any work due to the shortage of money in the hands of the people. Many small industry and businesses were hit so badly that they had to be taken down. The death’s of more than a hundred people seems to be in vain as no results have come out of the step.
The 122nd amendment of the Constitution of India enabled the Goods and Services Tax. The Goods and Services Tax(GST) was rolled out on 1st of July, 2017. It is the first major step that has been taken by Modi sarkar after the dramatic demonetization policy. Ever since its inception GST has been a hot topic of discussion by everyone. The irony is that the BJP government which was in resentment of the GST bill when the NDA government was in power has now become its makers. GST has not been a clear-cut policy as there have been a lot of confusion and misconceptions revolving around it. Even still people have not been able to completely understand what it actually means. The effects of the GST bill have been both positive as well as negative. While the cost of few commodities has gone down, many have seen an increase hike in their prices.
The clear-cut impact of GST on the Indian market is still not evident. GST has inflationary effect and India will also feel its pinch. The entailing price hike will affect many in the initial stages. The need to curb the inflationary tendencies is really important. The effect can be such that they can even shake the position of a strong party like BJP. Modi government will face a lot of challenges when it comes to GST and will face the risk occurring from it not only in the Lok Sabha elections but also in the assembly elections which have to be held before that. Every government that has implemented the GST bill has seen a loss or a bad result in the immediate elections.
WHY DEMONETIZATION AND GST CAN BE THE REASON OF DEMISE FOR BJP?
People can’t forget the scar that has been left by demonetization. People from the lower strata have suffered enough. Had demonetization shown some results every regret would have been whitewashed but that did not happen. People have not forgotten what they had to go through due to the recklessness of the government. Many people lost their lives and what people ever got was fake promises. Modi kept on saying that all he needs is a bit of time in order to prove that the step was right and it would be beneficial in the long run but today they seem like hollow promises that were based on shallow grounds. Not even a single result of demonetization has been shown till date. It has become a disaster that has left a mark on Indian history. BJP seems to have forgotten about the step altogether and they don’t even mention it on any forum. The recent RBI report said that 99 percent of the money came back after demonetization. This shows that all most all the black money has been turned into white.
It has been observed that any government around the world which has implemented GST has suffered problems in the immediate elections. Although the consequences of GST are still not clear one can see that people are not very much happy with its initial stance. Small businessmen are facing issues. Due to the uncertainty and unclear norms, people are finding it difficult to understand it.
It’s too early to decide whether GST is a hit or a flop policy but one can clearly state that demonetization was a disaster. Everything said and done it is pretty evident that BJP will feel the backlash of their failed policy in the elections in 2019.The verdict of the people will be portrayed by their votes. What BJP can do now is to earn back the lost trust of the people.