14 May, 2021

The Emperor’s New Notes

The government has big achievements, but it’s in denial over demonetisation

Photograph by PTI
The Emperor’s New Notes

In terms of programmes, the NDA government has continued and upscaled almost everything that was going on before; this is a good thing, for which they should be complimented. But in each of these cases, the hype has exceeded the substance delivered on the ground.

They built up expectations, many of which have gone unrealised. A number of new initiatives were announced, but little has been heard about what these have accomplished. For instance, the Mudra loans were a very good idea conceptually but, so far as I can make out, they are no different in real­ity from standard MSME loans. Mudra was one of the earliest programmes announced by the Modi government in 2014, but we are yet to see any government assessment of it. One wonders why. Now, four years later, they are talking about banks supporting MSMEs. That was exactly what the Mudra loans were supposed to do—have we come full circle? Mudra was supposed to help micro-entrepreneurs. So, what is happening?

In terms of certain policies, the government has done well. For instance, the Insolvency and...

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