The Modi dream is fading. An Economist report found him widely described as an "authoritarian" and a "megalomaniac" even by supporters. More important, by all accounts, he does not believe in a liberal free market. Rather, like so many Republican politicians who routinely applaud free enterprise, he is more pro-business than pro-market.
Our society has become so adept at creating Chitras -- filling their minds with fears and insecurities making them under confident, so afraid about what might life have in store for them lest they take the less trodden path. Any semblance of courage left to break out is snubbed so strong that it forgets its own existence.
NEW DELHI -- The government's honeymoon is perhaps already over and realistically it has another six to 12 months to start putting flesh on the bare-bone schemes and ideas announced this past year. If these do not eventuate, one may well witness emptier stadiums abroad and hear shriller voices at home. Ultimately, for PM Modi to sell the Incredible India story, he will need to make India credible.
Without economic prosperity and the lifting of the lower and middle classes, no amount of social justice will enable India to compete in the global marketplace; or its citizens, including minorities, to thrive and advance. Narendra Modi, having come from a humble background, understands this fact well.
There will be photo ops, gifts, and recitations about the leader of the world's largest democracy sitting with the leader of the world's oldest. But substantive matters are also to be discussed: Business. Weapons deals. Counterterrorism. Human rights and regional security issues will also be on the table.