Looking back at the year 2021, we cannot overlook the challenges thrown by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, its new variant and the farmers' protest. Yet, it was all crossed elegantly by PM Narendra Modi - a leader with a strong nationalistic streak, the one who offers a ‘complete package’ of benefits to the country. The 'Modi factor' was best defined by Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who said a few wrong decisions may have been taken by the Modi government but the intention was never mala-fide. Prime Minister Modi never took decisions which people would like but those which are good for the people, Shah had said.
Now, as we step into 2022, Prime Minister Narendra Modi continues to remain the ‘Numero Uno’ bet to counter the country’s challenges. Seven 'grand' years to power, and the Opposition still not having enough to challenge him in terms of an appropriate face or a credible insight.
Here's a look at PM Modi's memorable events, foreign visits in 2021.
The Kanpur Metro inauguration
On December 28, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the completed section of the Kanpur Metro Rail Project, along with a nine-km long section from IIT Kanpur to Moti Jheel completed in a record two years' time. Improving urban mobility has been one of the key focus areas of the prime minister and the metro project is yet another step in this direction, officials said. At the event, PM Modi also inspected the Kanpur Metro Rail Project and undertook a metro ride from the IIT metro station to Geeta Nagar. The entire length of the project in Kanpur is 32 km and it is being built at a cost of over Rs 11,000 crore.
Investment projects worth over Rs 28,000 crores in Mandi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on December 27 attended the groundbreaking ceremony for 287 investment projects worth over Rs 28,197 crores in Himachal Pradesh's Mandi to mark the fourth anniversary of the Jai Ram Thakur-led BJP government in the state. Earlier, Modi, accompanied by Union minister Anurag Thakur, had visited an exhibition put up by various departments of the state government. A Global Investors' Meet was held in Dharamsala on November 7-8, 2019. The first groundbreaking ceremony of projects worth over Rs 13,656 crores to turn these proposals into reality was held in Shimla on December 27 the same year in the presence of Union Home Minister Amit Shah.
PM Modi takes a holy dip in Ganga, offers prayers at Kaal Bhairav temple
Offering prayers at the Kaal Bhairav temple, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on December 13 took a dip in the Ganga before inaugurating the Kashi Vishwanath Corridor in Varanasi, his parliamentary constituency in Uttar Pradesh. Wearing a saffron-coloured attire, PM Modi offered flowers to the river considered holy by many Hindus and chanted mantras on a rosary. He also took water from the Ganga for the jalabhishek at the Kashi Vishwanath Temple. "I am overwhelmed. After some time, we all will witness the inauguration of the Kashi Vishwanath Dham project. Before this, I had darshan of Kaal Bhairav ji, the Kotwal of Kashi," PM Modi said in a tweet in Hindi.
The inauguration of the Purvanchal Expressway in UP
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 16 inaugurated the 341-km Purvanchal Expressway in Uttar Pradesh after landing on the highway airstrip in an IAF C-130 Hercules plane. The 3.2-km airstrip has been constructed on the expressway to facilitate emergency landing of fighter aircraft. The 341-km expressway links state capital Lucknow with Ghazipur and has been constructed at an estimated cost of Rs 22,500 crore. From the airstrip venue, the prime minister also witnessed an air show by different aircraft.
PM Modi at Army post in J&K's Nowshera on Diwali
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 4 met soldiers at the Nowshera sector in the border district of Rajouri in Jammu and Kashmir on the occasion of Diwali. Since taking over as prime minister, Modi has made it a point to meet troops in a border region on Diwali, starting from a visit to Siachen in 2014. Army chief General MM Naravane had carried out aerial reconnaissance of forward areas, including Rajouri and he was briefed about the prevailing security situation along the Line of Control (LoC) in the Jammu region.
The bilateral meeting between PM Narendra Modi and Joe Biden
Prime Minister Narendra Modi described as "outstanding" his first bilateral meeting with US President Joe Biden who said the Indo-US relationship is destined to be "stronger, closer and tighter” as the two leaders discussed a wide range of issues, including combating COVID-19, climate change, trade and the Indo-Pacific. Prime Minister Modi was welcomed at the Oval Office of the White House on September 25. Prime Minister Modi, who visited the US for the 7th time after assuming office in 2014, described the bilateral meeting with Biden as "important". "The seeds have been sown for an even stronger friendship between India and the US,” Prime Minister Modi had told Biden.
The climate summit in Glasgow
The UN climate summit in Glasgow opened on October 31 with appeals for action and prayers, kicking off two weeks of intense diplomatic negotiations by almost 200 countries on how to tackle the common challenge of intensifying global warming. Following the opening gavel, leaders from around the world gathered in Scotland's biggest city to layout their countries' efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions and deal with the effects of climate change. At the summit, Prime Minister Modi met scores of influential figures and leaders including Bill Gates, Nepal PM Deuba and several others.
Crucial Election Campaigning - PM Modi in West Bengal
The “Modi Versus Mamata” battle for 2024 had all eyes on the West Bengal election as the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) made several inroads in the state hoping to embark their win. The stage was set for the saffron camp to replace the Trinamool Congress, with several heavyweight BJP leaders from the national capital including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah attending several rallies urging people to vote for ‘change’ in order to build ‘Sonar Bangla’. Notably, the TMC also didn’t leave any stones unturned and went all out to campaign about the schemes started by the TMC government and urged the women of the state to support the TMC. But as fate could have it, TMC Supremo Mamata Banerjee defeated BJP and secured 219 out of 294 seats in the Assembly and formed her government for the third consecutive time in West Bengal. The pain of losing West Bengal after a hopeful Lok Sabha performance in the state may have come as a significant political disappointment, the prime minister's message remained clear – a leader’s popularity and governance remain the paramount factors.
75th Independence Day celebrations at the Red Fort
This year, for the 75th Independence Day celebrations at the historic Red Fort, Prime Minister Narendra Modi chose a saffron headgear with red patterns and a long tail. Wearing a traditional kurta and a churidar complemented by a blue jacket and a stole, Modi continued his tradition of donning flamboyant and colourful turbans at I-Day and Republic Day events. From a bright red bandhani turban from Kutch to a mustard Rajasthani 'safa', Modi's eye-catching turbans have been a highlight of his Republic Day appearances too.
The Modi-Upyogi collaboration
Giving a new term to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had termed the governance as 'Upyogi', which means meaningful/useful. "UP plus Yogi bahut hai upyogi (Uttar Pradesh plus Yogi have great utility)," the prime minister said, sending across a significant message. Two photographs of Prime Minister and Yogi Adityanath walking shoulder to shoulder went viral on social media, with the political circles seeing it as Modi’s yet another full-throated endorsement of UP chief minister in the build-up to the UP polls.