Narendra Modi: From A Tea Seller to Most Powerful Prime Minister


So, the month-long elections for India are finally over, and Narendra Modi is all set to become the Prime Minister of India for the second consecutive term of five years. The National Democratic Alliance Headed by him moving ahead to form the government after winning a thumping majority in the Indian Parliament.

In this context, it may be quite apt to go through his journey from a humble tea seller to the premiere of the world’s largest democracy.

Most Powerful Prime Minister
Narendra Modi – Most Powerful Prime Minister of India

Narendra Modi – The Early Life

Modi was born as Narendra Damodardas Modi on September 17, 1950, in a small town in Western Gujarat, Vadnagar. He was the third of the six children to Damodardas Modi and his wife Hiraben n a poor household. Quite in tune with how he loves fashion now, he was known to be keeping in touch with the fashion in poverty. 

He has always been reminiscing about his humble beginnings and how he used to help his father at the tea stall at the railway station. He was married off at a very younger age, but the marriage did not last long. It remained just a formality and Modi left soon after the marriage.

He belonged to a section of the marginalized caste and lived his childhood in a situation where his family struggled to make both ends meet. However, his penchant for the national service seems to have grown right from his childhood. He even worked as a volunteer during the Indo Pak war of 1965 with the Indian Army. His contribution in helping the flood victims in Gujarat in 1967 has also been considered to be born from his care towards society.

The Teens and adulthood

Narendra Modi developed an inclination towards renunciation. Once in his life, he made an attempt to go ascetic as well. He even gave up on the food that was considered to be non-ascetic. He was trying to move towards spiritualism. Swami Vivekananda is believed to have a huge influence on him.

Modi was also drawn towards reading and debating. His penchant for poetry was recently reported by Kumar Vishwas at an interview.

He was the Chief Minister of Gujarat for three consecutive terms before being elected as the prime minister-designate by BJP in a formal function in Goa.

Narendra Modi as Prime Minister

Modi was actively involved in the activities of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh or RSS since his childhood. The organization has an ideology that formed the earliest incarnation of today’s BJP as the Bhartiya Jan Sangh.

Narendra Modi
Photo: PTI

One of the strengths Modi stood during his first tenure as a Prime Minister since 2014 is his focus on the technology and other aspects driven by technology. The Digital India initiative was launched as part of his regime and was aimed at creating a completely digitally empowered society. His other projects and schemes have also been focussed on the technology-driven world.

The smart city project, bullet train, and similar other initiatives stand proof to these initiatives. Focus on the village sanitization programs labeled Swachh Bharat Abhiyan has been one of the best schemes that his government has been able to achieve.

The economy has been growing constant growth under the Narendra Modi regime. The growth is hovering at around 7 percent per annum. He convinced thousands of LPG users to leave subsidy and join in the development of the nation. These should be indicative of the clout and influence he has been able to achieve on the Indian psyche.

Of course, there have been a few controversial decisions in the economic arena. The Notebandi or Demonetisation of high denomination notes in November 2016 was indeed a huge decision. Yet another decision that rocked the parliament of India was the rollout of Goods and Services Tax in 2017. These two decisions have constantly been attacked by his detractors and political opponents consistently.

Modi loves calling himself Chowkidar, meaning the watchman of the country and considers himself as the Pradhan Sevak or Prime Servant of the nation – promising to safeguard the country’s interests.

His Personal Life

Narendra Modi does not share much information about his personal life as such. However, what has come out through what he has been able to share through his interactions with the public, we have been able to get a few insights into his personal life.

He maintains a humble lifestyle though he has been found to be quite fond of fashion. Modi has also been a Yoga enthusiast. He has also been known to be tech-savvy and perhaps matches these qualities with the ex-PM Rajiv Gandhi. He is known to reach out to the people through social media. The whopping 48 million followers he has on Twitter should stand proof to this.

He has always been a great orator. His ability to connect with people at the roadshows and public events has been quite commendable. Mann Ki Baat – his weekly interactions with the public through TV and Radio was an innovative idea. We may find the same initiatives in the second tenure as well.

He has been fond of poetry and photography. His photographs have been showcased at the exhibitions and have earned a name for him. He has also written a few books in Gujarati and other languages as well.

Strengths of Narendra Modi

Modi had his beginnings quite humble. But his passion for change has always been positive. He has a vision for the new India and wants to implement it faster. He is not averse to embrace technology. In fact, his strength lies in democracy, technology and of course, the youth of India who is seen to engaging with him on a better scale this time around.

He has a vision for the Asian region and believes that the future belongs to Asia and India is going to be a major contributor to the world economy and status. In Forbes, PM Narendra Modi has been ranked in top 10 list of World’s most powerful people.

What Lies Ahead?

In essence, Modi is on his way to create an India where people of any belief can live in peace and harmony. The Multireligious nature of the Indian region is definitely looking ahead to another wonderful term ahead.

Modi has been winning over the support from a wider range of ethnicities, cultures and socioeconomic boundaries. As Rahul Verma, a fellow at theCentre for Policy Research in Delhi aptly puts it, “This leader, who has risen from the ranks of a poor family, has become a symbol.”.

Modi has become the aspirational leader for the Indian youth who have seen the newer technology and the western lifestyle. However, the creation of jobs may not be that easy – especially in the face of the US trade war and slow down being witnessed globally. However, we expect him to focus on economic reforms. He may be looking ahead to the targeted payment to farmers and other groups, a glimpse of which has already been witnessed just before the elections.

Well, let us wait and see what has this charismatic leader planned for the new India.