India Shining (Hindi: भारत उदय ) was a marketing slogan referring to the overall feeling of economic optimism in India in 2004. The slogan was popularised by the then-ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the 2004 Indian general elections.
The slogan initially developed as part of an Indian government campaign intended to promote India internationally. Advertising firm Grey Worldwide won the campaign account in 2003; the slogan and the associated campaign was developed by national creative director Prathap Suthan, in consultation with Finance Minister Jaswant Singh. The government spent an estimated US$20 million of government funds on national television advertisements and newspaper ads featuring the "India Shining" slogan.
Some editorials also suggested that the India Shining campaign was one of the causes for the subsequent defeat of the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government in the 2004 parliamentary elections, particularly in urban areas, the target audience of the campaign.
The negative assessment of the India Shining campaign was echoed after the election by former Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani, who described it as "valid," but "inappropriate for our election campaign... By making them verbal icons of our election campaign, we gave our political opponents an opportunity to highlight other aspects of India's contemporary reality... which questioned our claim."
There has been controversy over the India Shining advertisements as whether the governments, States or Centre are not permitted to use taxpayer's money to promote any political gain. The BJP government has spent an approximate cost of Rs. 5 billion for the advertisements campaign during 2004 Parliament elections.
The India Shining slogan drew criticism from various columnists and political critics of the ruling National Democratic Alliance government for glossing over a variety of social problems, including poverty and social inequality.
The slogan was then used as a central theme in the BJP's campaign for the 2004–05 national elections, a move criticised by the BJP's political opponents, who felt that public money was being used for partisan purposes. In response, the Indian Election Commission banned the slogan's broadcast until after the elections, although BJP politicians continued to use the slogan in other contexts.
- "I would have done the same campaign for the Congress". Mid-Day. 15 February 2004. Archived from the original on 8 March 2007. Retrieved 14 September 2006.
- "The Man Behind the 'India Shining' Slogan". Rediff. 2 April 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- Perry, Alex (16 February 2004). "Subcontinental Divide". TIME Asia. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- "The Meaning of Verdict 2004". The Hindu. 14 May 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- "Congress Defeats BJP in India's Parliamentary Election". The Epoch Times. 13 May 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- Biswas, Soutik (13 May 2004). "How India's elections were won and lost". BBC. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- "India shines through Verdict 2004". The Hindu. 14 May 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- "BJP admits 'India Shining' error". BBC. 28 May 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- "India Shining backfired: Advani". The Times of India. 29 May 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- http://www.rediff.com/money/2004/feb/21guest.htm India shining has Mr Joshi worried.
- http://www.indiatogether.org/2004/feb/edt-shining.htm Govt shining, Media mining.
- "Not So Shining, Really". Outlook India. 2 February 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- "India shines as women grapple with darkness". The Times of India. 4 February 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- "The Battle Lines". Frontline. 27 February 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- "Sonia questions 'India shining' slogan". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 25 January 2004. Retrieved 14 September 2006.
- "BJP's 'India shining' campaign eyewash: Congress". The Hindu. 17 February 2004. Retrieved 14 September 2006.
- "A campaign that lost sheen". The Hindu Magazine. Chennai, India. 3 August 2004. Retrieved 13 September 2006.
- "India Shining...Feel Good vs Fail Good". India Infoline. 10 February 2004. Archived from the original on 11 July 2006. Retrieved 13 September 2006.