The India That Might Have Been (Part 8)

India 2024 – 1

As he sat in his room in the summer of 2024 flush from an electoral hat-trick, India’s most transformational Prime Minister – the one who made Indians free and prosperous – reflected on his journey, the country and people that had been transformed, and his own road ahead. There was one big unfinished action that needed to be done for the nation, a personal decision to be taken, and a future roadmap to be crafted for the betterment of humanity.

For the first time in history, Indians controlled the destiny of their nation, not emperors, kings or kakistocrats. Freed from the chains of successive governments that had made doing business harder and harder with each passing year, the people had taken it upon themselves to use their newly found economic freedom to create better lives for themselves and their families. The Dhan Vapasi initiative had unlocked trillions of dollars from under government control and put wealth into the hands of the rightful owners – the people themselves. As sector after sector was freed up from government interventions, a virtuous cycle led to the creation of well-paying jobs and rapid economic growth. Technology accelerated the transformation as Indians built on the latest advances in computing and energy. What the West did over a century, what China took a generation, India had achieved in a decade.

If India kept its growth momentum, in less than a generation, the annual income of the average Indian would have gone up by a factor of 10. Their wealth would have increased even more. India by 2040 could become the world’s largest economy – ahead of the US and China. No other country would be producing more than India by 2040. This was something which was last true a thousand years ago.

What the 2014-2024 Indian Revolution did was to make Indians richer and put the nation on a path to greatness it had last seen a millennium ago – before the invasions by foreign powers began. With the advantage of its younger population, cheaper energy and piggybacking on technological innovations, India was powering ahead to become the production and innovation engine of the world.

What gave him great satisfaction was that India had done it as a democracy – building on a meritocratic liberal capitalism like the West as opposed to the political capitalism practised in China. India had consistently ranked among the top 5 in economic freedom in the past five years – quite amazing when its rank was 100+ a decade ago.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.

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