May 24, 2019

INDIA: Narendra Modi Secures Landslide Victory! He Was Re-Elected As Prime Minister Of India In General Election 2019 Held On Thursday May 23rd. Yay! 🎉😊👍

BBC News, UK
written by Staff
Thursday May 23, 2019

Indian PM Narendra Modi has secured another five-year term after winning a landslide general election victory.

His Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) looks set to win about 300 of the 543 seats in parliament, in what Mr Modi hailed as "a historic mandate".

The main opposition alliance, which is headed by Rahul Gandhi's Congress party, has admitted defeat.

The vote had been widely viewed as a referendum on the prime minister's Hindu nationalist politics.

"We all want a new India. I want to bow down my head and say thank you," Mr Modi said in a victory address to BJP supporters on Thursday evening.

More than 600 million people voted in a marathon six-week process.

Mr Modi has not just exceeded exit poll predictions but has also won a larger share of the vote than the 2014 elections, partial results show.

At a press conference in Delhi, Mr Gandhi conceded the general election as well as his Amethi seat in Uttar Pradesh, which he had held since 2004 and his family had held for decades.

What are the numbers?

Partial and declared results show Mr Modi's BJP is projected to win 300 seats on its own, and combined with the party's allies, this number reaches nearly 350.

The main opposition Congress party is expected to win fewer than 60.

A party or coalition needs at least 272 seats to secure a majority in the 543-member lower house of parliament, or Lok Sabha.

In 2014, the BJP won 282 seats - the biggest victory by any party in 30 years - and with its allies it secured 336 seats in that parliament.

The Congress, which won just 44, suffered its worst defeat in 2014 and with its allies took up just 60 seats in the lower house.

This year 900 million voters were eligible to take part in seven rounds of voting, making it the largest election the world has ever seen.

The final result may not be known for several hours or longer.

What challenges does Modi face?

In his victory speech, Mr Modi said there were only two castes in India now. "The poor and those who want to work to bring them out of poverty. We need to empower both."

Growing unemployment and fears of a recession will see Mr Modi face demands to provide jobs for the millions of young people entering the labour market in coming months.

Under his first term, India's economy - the world's sixth largest - lost some of its momentum. A leaked government report this year put the unemployment rate at the highest it's been since the 1970s.

Farmers in India will also be hoping he will prioritise the agricultural industry, after a crop glut and declining commodity prices saw their incomes stagnate.

Many saw this election as a battle for India's identity and the protection of minorities. A strident - and at times violent - Hindu nationalism has become mainstream in the past five years, with increased attacks against minorities, including the lynching of dozens of Muslims accused of smuggling cows.

And national security was put into the spotlight after a suicide attack by a Pakistan-based militant group killed at least 40 paramilitary police in Indian-administered Kashmir in February. India then launched unprecedented air strikes in Pakistan, prompting it to respond in kind and bringing the two countries to the brink of war.

CNN-News18 published on May 24, 2019: Modi celebrates his historic win in Lok Sabha Elections, addressing the public who brought him back to power with one of the biggest mandate ever. #LokSabhaElections2019

The intro: Our top story. The united oppositions attempt to halt the BJP's juggernaut was completely in vain as we saw it yesterday. Prime Minister came back with a thumping mandate, even larger than what he received by ?. The BJP has registered an absolute majority in Lok Sabha by winning 303 seats. As India's tally is now at 353. Narendra Modi of course is the first Prime Minister to have returned to office with such a huge mandate after 1971. The union cabinet is about to meet this evening where a resolution will be passed to dissolve the 16th Lok Sabha. BJP sources have said to News18 that the Prime Minister's swearing in is likely to take place on the 30th of May.
The Indian Express
written by Kavita Upadhyay
Sunday May 19, 2019

Modi reached Jolly Grant Airport near Dehradun on Saturday morning, where he was received by Chief Minister Trivendra Rawat. He then proceeded to Kedarnath, reaching amidst tight security at 9.30 am, for what Uttarakhand BJP president Ajay Bhatt called a “spiritual and absolutely personal” visit.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi spent the night before Election 2019 comes to an end in a cave 11,700 feet up in the Himalayas. While the newly constructed space near the Kedarnath shrine is designated a ‘meditation cave’, it was not clear whether the PM was to spend his entire time inside, starting 2 pm Saturday, meditating.

Rudraprayag District Magistrate Mangesh Ghildiyal said dinner would be sent for the PM to the cave which, he added, has electricity, a heater, a simple bed, mattress, a small bathing area, an attached toilet, and an electric geyser for hot water. “There’s a telephone too in the cave. And two tents have been erected at 30 m and 100 m from the cave for security reasons,” Ghildiyal said.

With intermittent rain exacerbating the cold, the temperature in Kedarnath, which is covered in snow, is expected to drop to minus 3 degrees Celsius at night.

The Sunday Express has learnt that the PMO had sought permission for the visit from the Election Commission, and it was approved on the condition that no Model Code of Conduct provisions are violated.

Modi reached Jolly Grant Airport near Dehradun on Saturday morning, where he was received by Chief Minister Trivendra Rawat. He then proceeded to Kedarnath, reaching amidst tight security at 9.30 am, for what Uttarakhand BJP president Ajay Bhatt called a “spiritual and absolutely personal” visit.

Ghildiyal said the PM did darshan at the shrine, followed by a puja. “After the puja, the Prime Minister reviewed the reconstruction works at Kedarnath.

This was followed by a review meeting with the agencies undertaking the construction works.” Modi tweeted a video where he was seen discussing reconstruction-related issues with Uttarakhand Chief Secretary Utpal Kumar Singh, as well as photos of himself at Kedarnath.

After lunch, at around 2 pm, Modi headed to the ‘meditation cave’. Located along the banks of the Mandakini river, the 10 ft-by-6 ft cave was built last year to accommodate a maximum of two persons seeking to meditate on Kedarnath premises. Modi is the first person to use it, Ghildiyal said.

In photos released by ANI, the PM was seen siting inside the cave wrapped in a saffron shawl, with only his face showing and his eyes closed.

B D Singh, the CEO of the Badrinath-Kedarnath Temple Committee, who is present in Kedarnath, said, “The Prime Minister will be spending the night in the cave. However, it is not clear whether he would be meditating the whole night.”

Ghildiyal too said there was no clarity on Modi’s meditation schedule. “He has been meditating throughout the afternoon, but all we know is that he will be leaving Kedarnath for the Badrinath shrine at 8:30 tomorrow (Sunday) morning, before which there’s a darshan scheduled at the Kedarnath shrine.”

BJP president Bhatt said, “He (Modi) is in Kedarnath for shaanti (peace). It is a spiritual and an absolutely personal visit. He is meditating in a cave. It is the Prime Minister’s right to practise his religion. There’s nothing political about it.”

Modi had last visited Kedarnath in November, when he had also inspected the reconstruction works, which were started after the 2013 flash floods destroyed much of the valley. His government made Kedarnath reconstruction one of its pet projects, and during a visit in October 2017, the PM had laid the foundation stone for five projects in the Kedarpuri area, which encompasses the Kedarnath shrine.

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