Modi set to return as prime minister with a resounding win

Narendra-Modi

The Bhartiya Janata Party-led coalition is headed for a landslide win in India with more than 350 seats.

NEW DELHI: The ruling Bhartiya Janata Party has scored a massive win in the Indian Lok Sabha elections, paving the way for a second term for Prime Minister Narendra Modi. While a bevy of exit polls had pointed toward a certain victory for his party, what was significant was that the Modi-led BJP is headed for an even bigger win than the one it scored in the last election, held in 2014.

As the daylong vote counting process entered the last lap, the ruling party looks set to get a better vote share and a better number of seats in the next Lok Sabha, the upper house of India’s parliament.

By late afternoon local time here, the BJP and its National Democratic Alliance coalition were leading in more than 350 seats, with the BJP itself leading in or winning approximately 300 seats. The party had won 284 seats in 2014.

The total number of Lok Sabha seats is 542 and the clear majority mark is 272.

The main opposition Indian National Congress is far behind, winning or leading in only 53 seats. The

The next three big blocs in the Lok Sabha will all be regional parties. The All India Trinamool Congress in West Bengal has won 25 seats, down from 34 in 2014. In Andhra Pradesh, the Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party has secured 24 seats, a gain of 8 and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam in Tamil Nadu won 23 seats. The DMK drew a blank in 2014.

Modi was re-elected with a resounding win from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh with 385,000 votes. BJP President Amit Shah won by 500,000 votes in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.

Congress party President Rahul Gandhi is trailing BJP’s Smriti Irani by 20,000 votes in Amethi in Uttar Pradesh. However, Gandhi is leading in the second seat he contested, Wayanad in Kerala, by more than 400,000.

As the BJP’s margin continued to grow, Modi took to Twitter and wrote: “together we will grow, together we will prosper.”

With this thumping victory, the National Democratic Alliance has broken its own records and emerged as the only non-Congress party to return to power in India.

Significantly, the BJP has been able to make headway in eastern states of West Bengal and Odisha, as well as the entire North-East region of India.

In Uttar Pradesh, the largest state in India, the BJP overcame the Mahaghatbandhan coalition of Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samajwadi Party, by winning 60 of the state’s 80 seats.

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