Is Narendra Modi really a man of development? A trip to Ahmadabad unravels the truth

Shrinivasan J.

Shrinivasan J.

Chennai based entrepreneur. Liberal and Ardently Secular. Likes to travel. Father of twin boys. Fitness enthusiast. Write about politics and technology. Chooses to stay non-aligned with political parties.

After reading endless eulogies on the Modi-model, I decided to fly down to Ahmadabad from Mumbai where I live to see for myself what this man has done. After the huge hoopla that is being created around this man, I was expecting a swanky town with clean roads and prosperous people milling around with happy faces, no garbage, no beggar, no traffic jams, no traffic rule violators and no visible poverty and disease.

Man, what a shock I got, it was one of the pathetic towns that I had visited in the past year. This year alone I visited Mangalore, Udupi, Mysore, Bangalore, Chennai and Patna; the only city that would compete with Ahmadabad for pathetic conditions would be Patna.

Ahmadabad was like any other north Indian city, filthy, crazy with no sense of discipline and nothing and believe me, the number of flyovers and underpasses that dot Chennai and Bangalore are nowhere there.

narendra-modi

And there is this huge proportion of population, which just lives by the road side and sell their wares with dirty children playing around, and the worst was the quality of roads – yes some parts have good roads – but most of the roads are so-so and yes, there seems to be no regular clearing of garbage anywhere, except in posh areas, and you guessed it right – a horde of cattle milling around every garbage dumping locations and it was real crazy.

As I moved around Ahmadabad  what shocked me the most was the apparent success this man has achieved in portraying himself as a man of development, when development seem to have missed a huge number of people. Unfortunately those are the people who may not have the means to come and troll here or just do not have the time to indulge in such luxuries.

Yes he has created two kitsch – the beautification of the Kankaria Lake and the attempt to create the riverfront along Sabarmati. The beautification of Kankaria lake is a testimony to the hollowness gujarat’s development agenda – garish lights lit around the lake’s banks giving it an appearance of MGR movie set. And yes there is a picnic train that runs around the lake – grown up men and women with their noisy children sit and marvel at the wonder Modi has created for them. This is the class which will blow up Rs 1000 on a weekend and will definitely vote for Modi. but then there is a whole lot of people who do not have the time to even come to the lake.

The lesser I say about the RiverFront project, the better. It seems to be going on and on and on… and Modi will keep on projecting the riverfront project as his achievement.

It is really sick to see the non-stop propaganda portraying him as a development guru when the main city of Gujarat is pits! I am convinced many of the trolls who support Modi as a development guru have never ever visited Gujarat or have been paid by his media managers or have become deaf, dumb, blind and senile or all of them together.

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If this is the state of the biggest city in the State after 12 years of rule by Narendra Modi, I can only imagine how bad the other cities and villages in Gujarat would be…

Being someone from Chennai, I can only compare Ahmadabad with Chennai and utmost Bangalore – absolutely no comparison, not that these cities are great but Ahmadabad stands no chance.

Discussions with my drivers were a case in point- the first day I had a Muslim driver… when I asked him who would win, he said ‘wait for Dec 20, you will come to know’… the next day I had a Maharashtrian Hindu driver and when I asked him the same question, he said, ‘Modi will win because he will become the PM.

I realized that this whole hoopla of him being projected as PM is a deliberate ploy to essentially win the Gujarat polls as otherwise all the warts and wounds of his regime and his fake development agenda would be up for discussion… to camouflage this pathetic failure, millions of rupees are being spent to market him as a development guru and also to project him as a PM candidate! How pathetic!!

But then what intrigued me was how does a Gujarati perceive development – I asked an acquaintance about his views – He said, under Modi, a number of malls have come up and hence the State has developed… I asked my Maharashtrian Hindu driver – He said, in the last 10 years, lot of apartment complexes have come up and prices of apartments have gone up – this is development for him.

So development is viewed by different people differently and I am damn sure that a whole lot of people would not have seen any development at all.

When I left Ahmadabad yesterday morning, I was convinced that I would not be surprised if all the pollsters and trolls will be proved wrong because, even as a whole horde of noise-makers are crying that Modi will win, there seems to a silent majority who does not talk much but could completely upset Modi’s applecart.

For a man who is such a megalomaniac and so successful in marketing himself as a successful developer – why the hell should he campaign like this – attend 10 meeting in every corner of the State and also have 50 3D shows everyday. If he is so successful and if there is a Hindu unification, he should just be sitting in his office and win the elections.

Of late, he looks frustrated and scarred, it is on his face. He is unraveling and it is good for India!!

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  • Sanjay

    Was it the same you who posted this in a FP comment?

  • Ajay

    Is this article some sort of satire?

  • VIRAL JAIN

    “…. and sell their wares with dirty children playing around……”
    First of all, mind ur words for common Man atleast, ‘dirty’ children… Damn U!!!
    And which indian city has a clean river front which he has managed to do & what Congress hasn’t been willing to do for Yamuna & Ganga despite gobbling up Trillions of USD.
    And about population: so you want to clean up population or rather not let them enter the city/state??? And the bitter truth is nobody can uplift you, it’s only you who can. If by consoling for the pity state of road side dwellers, do you want them to be pampered with fre money, flats, gifts etc. which many often do & tthen they will assure you ur vote, but then that’s not development!!!
    Answer my questions if you can…
    What NaMo has done nobody else had but then he’s a human too, & Godhra massacre was a mistake but it has passed long time ago… It’s time to look into future & stop ruing over past…
    Long live NaMo!!!

  • http://twitter.com/nkumar_ Nitish Kumar ™

    Lol! The writer didn’t find a pic of bad roads as had no access to Sri Lanka

  • Mahesh

    If this guy seems to be a congress stooge. If he is from TN i am also from TN. This guy knows very well that cities other than Chennai are facing 18 hrs of power cut each day for the past several months and this guy is comparing Ahmedabad with Chennai, He is nuts

  • adhikary

    Who the hell he is ‘Choose to stay non-aligned with political parties..opps!! with political parties other than congress’? starting the article by ‘Mass-Murderer Modi’, finishing with Modi being frustrated, scarred because he is campaigning for election!!!! You idiot, do’n you even not know how election campaign are done in TN? distributing everything to wow the voters spending hundreds of crores. And so much upset by Modi’s meetings and 3-D shows ????

  • Lite

    Dude,I don’t know who wrote this article but this is just Modi bashing.People who have lived in Ahmadabad like it and say its good.And take a trip to whole Gujarat and then judge. Development only in capital is unhealthy with not no trickle down whatsoever.

  • Jay

    F**k Y*u Srinivasan J..I live in Ahmadabad and i know how it’s improved in last 10yrs.. How much did u get from Khangress to write this piece of shit..??

    • TrueHindu

      I live in Ahmedabad too, and the article is true to every last detail.

      Let’s test your claim about, “how Ahmedabad has improved in last 10 years” Shall we?

    • http://iamamangoman.wordpress.com/2012/11/06/modi-kejriwal/ Gu’an

      Gujarat slipped in basic literacy rate ranking from 16 in 2001 to 18 in 2011 (source: census), while people like Adani and Ambani have climbed up the Frobes richness rank in that same period of Modi’s rule. It is govt’s job to provide basic infra of which access to basic elementary education is a big factor. Giving away free land and natural resources is not governance – it should be left to market prices.

  • Kapil Gupta

    wow, just before elections this came, and this man uses words like monster, megalomaniac for an elected chief minister, SHAME On him and his kinds…….. These are kinds who are bringing this country to … completely biased journalism, how much did you get paid for this job……

  • truthseeker

    Lol

  • Tejas Pote

    Your views about Gujarat are completely biased and also the Bangalore and Chennai have no stand as compare to Gujarat, As from Mumbai i have visited all these three cities and i had horrible experience in Bangalore and Chennai. Where Ahmedabad was way better than these two cities. So please see places with open eyes. People in Ahmedabad are way better than those in Bangalore and Chennai. So please get your observation better.

    • muffling

      i have lived in bangalore for 4 years and worked in chennai for 6 months there is a huge difference but u cant compare a city with only one aspect one things is for sure that i can say is that this writer has no sense about journalism or he would not have done this mistake and one thing i will like to tell you that after staying in chennai for 6 months for sure that city does not like north or any indian who doesnt speak their native language and please mr. writer get some real stats before commenting on anything becoz by asking driver or few people you can not tell what that person had done for its state .

  • Leslie Boyd

    I don\’t mind people expressing their own views. But I have to be concerned when a website publishes something like this author\’s article without any fact-checking whatsoever. As for the article itself, it is very noteworthy that the author has chosen to do exactly what mainstream media does and posted a photograph with Modi\’s face on it, rather than anything relevant to his article, like say, a Before-and-After photo.

    To the people who want to take this article seriously, please notice the number of times the author has used the word \”troll\” in his article, and then google the term \”internet troll\”. Again, its very unfortunate that this article was published.

  • Indian

    You are a shame, Srinivasan. Your bias is clearly evident and your writing is horrible. First learn to write and then decide to criticize someone like Modi. Till then stick to entrepreneurship and travelling.

  • http://twitter.com/turiyafy Karthik Singh

    The guy is total nuts!
    Do you know gujarat is the only state in india which provides 24 hour electricity for every city,village,town?
    Gujarat has the best roads in the country rated by an international agency?
    Gujarat has seen the sharpest drop in malnutrition according to CAG report?

  • casonite

    The idiotic writers agenda came to fore as soon as he mentioned monster. These roadside idiots are churning out garbage. Modi is a good leader and he will be next pm of india.

  • vivek

    I have been to Ahemdabaad and different parts of gujrat several times in the last 10 years. The only thing I can say that is ‘the writer is totally non sense” And moreover First post seems to be bought by congress just like Nehru dynasty TV (NDTV) bought Ht group last wee.

  • Aniket

    Surely, this article is a joke.

    Especially since the writer is from Chennai.. (although he flew down from another North Indian city – all of which are supposedly terrible – must I add)

  • http://twitter.com/guy_in_london The Guy Next Door

    I visited Ahmedabad recently and agree with the premise of your article. Ahmedabad is not better than any other Indian city of its size. I would count safety as one of its unique features (even at midnight, you wouldnt feel unsafe) but thats always been Gujarat’s strong point, nothing to do with Modi

  • Gurshane

    Go home Srinivasan J. You’re Drunk.