We don’t have a majority government. We have a participating majority government, is a quote often attributed to Thomas Jefferson, former US President and Founding Father of the United States. The majority of the electorate in the most populous state of Uttar Pradesh along with Goa, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Manipur will elect a new government within weeks, according to dates announced by the Indian Election Commission . The BJP is bidding for the extension of the office to four states and to assume the office in Punjab. It is no secret that the attention of all agencies in the electoral ecosystem has turned to the crucial state of the UP.
Campaign rallies have never been galleries for economic narratives. Even the sharpest political pundit can’t help but remember that UP campaigns were caste-centric. But this time, economic development was at the center of the electoral campaign. A reasonable period for the assessment of GDP growth between the regimes of Yogi Adityanath and Akhilesh Yadav would be the first three years, as the last two years have been marred by economic lockdowns and restrictions due to the COVID pandemic. -19. The growth rate of the gross domestic product of the state or GSDP at constant prices during the tenure of Yogi Adityanath is three basis points higher than that of Akhilesh. According to the Net State Domestic Product (NSDP) at constant prices, per capita income increased by 2.99% compared to 2.62% under the Akhilesh government.
According to the Department of Economics and Statistics of the UP, the contribution of the primary sector increased from 25.8% in 2016-2017 to 25.3% in 2019-2020, while the contribution of the tertiary sector increased from 46.3 to 49.7%. According to the 15th report of the Finance Commission, the share of the UP GSDP in 2018-2019 increased to 9.7% among the Estates General, compared to 9.4% in 2016-2017. During Akhilesh Yadav’s regime, it remained largely between 9.3 and 9.4.
At the heart of economic development is the UP 2017 Industrial Investment and Employment Promotion Policy whose main features are ease of doing business, promotion of units in the backward areas of Purvanchal and Bundelkhand and guarantee of a one-stop customs clearance system. The Yogi government has implemented over 500 reforms leading to a quantum leap of 10 positions to secure second place in 2019 in the Indian Government’s Business Reform Action Plan or Ease of Doing Business Ranking. Anchored to the investment promotion policy, 21 additional sectoral economic policies covering electronics, agribusiness, pharmaceuticals, solar, etc. have been announced over the past four years.
Currently, the MSME sector contributes 60% of the state’s annual industrial output and is the second largest employer after agriculture. The UP government has enacted a landmark MSME (Establishment and Operation Facilitation) Act 2020 reinforcing the MSME Promotion Policy 2017 and the MSME Procurement Policy 2020. A declaration endorsement of intent is given within 72 hours and units can obtain clearances within 1000 days. Institutionalized Inspector Raj has become a thing of the past. The Yogi government inaugurated One District, One Product (ODOP) in 2018 with a vision to identify one product from each of the 75 districts and create a traditional product-specific industrial hub.
The intention of policies and legislation is to shift the burden of labor from the primary sector and provide opportunities for entrepreneurship, self-employment and employment to the young and skilled labor force . As a result, over the past 4.5 years, 92 lakh MSMEs have secured loans worth Rs 2.7 lakh crore under various schemes, nearly 90 lakh MSMEs have brought in investments of over Rs 5 lakh crore and provided jobs at 3 crore, common facility centers have been set up in 40 districts in addition to government purchases through the GeM (government e-marketplace) portal which exceed Rs 15,000 crore.
According to the MSME Export Promotion Council 2019 report, UP had 4.403 million MSME units in 2014-2015, which doubled to 9 million units in 2019, largely due to the One District program, One Product. This is in stark contrast to units moving to other states during Akhilesh’s tenure. According to a report estimate, UP will have 14 million units by 2020-21.
A state’s potential and the effectiveness of its economic policies can be measured by the investments, including FDI, that it attracts. Under Akhilesh’s tenure, investment proposals worth $10.2 billion were received and $253 million in FDI was flown in. In comparison, three years of Yogi government received 7.5 times more investment proposals and 1.5 times more FDI, respectively. The 2017-18 economic study mentions that states that export internationally and trade with other states are found to be wealthier. This correlation is stronger between prosperity and international trade. UP’s share of India’s exports increased to 5.62% in 2020-21 from 4.54% in 2016-17, with ODOP driving the rise.
Robust connectivity is essential for industrial progress and capital investment. The Yogi government inaugurated two highways – Purvanchal and Bundelkhand – while only one highway was inaugurated under the previous regime. The construction of the national road has also witnessed the fastest pace of the Yogi tenure. The 351 km section of the Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor and the completion of the Western Dedicated Freight Corridor by 2022 will ensure continuous movement of goods for consumption and export. The inauguration of National Waterways-1 and the operationalization of Noida Airport by 2024 will provide multimodal options for exports.
Creating jobs and employment opportunities with consequent large-scale socio-economic impact has been the top priority of the Yogi government. UP Industrial Investment and Employment Promotion Policy 2017, 21 sector economic policies, ODOP, Mudra, Stand Up India, Chief Minister Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme, Yuva Udyamita Vikas Abhiyan, Vishwakarma Shram Samman Yojana, Mission Rozgar, Mukhyamantri Pravasi Shramik Udyamita Vikas Yojana and the 6.65 lakh government jobs have caused the unemployment rate to fall from 17.5% in 2017 to 4.1% by March 2021. The spectacle of the sharp drop in the unemployment rate has another dimension – migrants from the Massive reverse migration due to the pandemic have been employed at the fastest pace.
Uttar Pradesh has the second largest economy among states in FY21 and India’s $5 trillion GDP target is unthinkable without UP leading the way in growth. Governance has been provided along the dimensions of ease of living, empowerment, employment and entrepreneurship with a focus on economic growth and will continue to be provided as the Yogi government moves forward. is striving to achieve a $1 trillion economy by FY25, an idea pioneered by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Prime Minister rightly said that UP-plus Yogi is “UPYOGI”. Democracy is based on the belief that there are extraordinary possibilities in ordinary people and the BJP is sure of UPYOGI 2.0.
Sandeep Vempati is co-organizer, BJP Telangana. He holds a Masters in Finance from the University of London. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not represent the position of this publication.
Read all the latest news, breaking news and updates on coronavirus here.