Narendra Modi 2014 Campaign Themes
Three main themes of Narendra Modi's 2014 election campaign are development, corruption, and employment and entrepreneurship. The groups that were targeted for the different themes include the youth, the neo-middle class and rural inhabitants.
- Narendra Modi capitalized on his image as someone who had brought about a lot of development in Gujarat at a time when the rest of India was experiencing stagnant economic growth, bureaucratic inaction and corruption scandals.
- Under the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Narendra promised to improve rural and urban infrastructure, build 100 new cities and focus on modernization and sanitation. He would employ some strategies from his Gujarat model including the 'growth experiment' which was successful and "won accolades from both local and global investors."
- The "neo-middle class" was one of the specific demographics that this theme was attempting to target. The neo-middle class, a demographic dubbed by Narendra Modi, are those who live in rapidly urbanizing areas, "are no longer poor but not yet firmly in the middle class", and are looking for more opportunity and prosperity but are held back by the country's lagging development. Narendra Modi would cater to this group through tax cuts, lower import duties and better urban infrastructure.
- In addition, this theme was attempting to target rural inhabitants through Narendra Modi's ‘rurban’ vision which would equip rural areas with urban style amenities. He also promised to increase the penetration and usage of broadband, ensure financial inclusion and to generate IT-based jobs in rural areas.
- During his campaign, Narendra Modi focused on the corruption scandals that existed under the previous INC government. He planned to wipe out corruption and offer hope for businesses and citizens that were tired of rampant corruption.
- He promised to establish a system that would diminish the scope of corruption. This would be done through the creation of a black money task force to bring down black money held abroad, the establishment of policy-driven and system-based governance through e-Governance, and the simplification and rationalization of the tax regime.
- The Indian youth were the specific demographic that this theme was attempting to target, because at the time, the young voters were interested in inclusive growth and they were "fed up with the string of corruption scandals" under the incumbent Congress regime.
Employment and entrepreneurship
- Narendra Modi, under BJP, promised to empower and encourage the youth through self-employment. He also promised to create a business-friendly environment and up to 250 million jobs in 10 years.
- He would focus on stronger credit and market linkages as well as on the modernization of agriculture, retail and allied industries. In addition, he would initiate a multi-skill development program that focused on entrepreneurship and job creation; develop high-impact domains such as tourism and labor-intensive manufacturing; and transform employment exchanges into career centers.
- The theme was specifically attempting to target the Indian youth, as majority of them were in informal jobs characterized by low wages, abysmal work conditions, lack of social or job security, and absence of collective bargaining rights.