India: After his triumph, Modi prepares his second term

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who won the parliamentary elections of the most populous democracy in the world, held consultations on Friday to prepare for his second term.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of the Hindu nationalist leader was credited with 303 seats in the lower house of parliament, out of 542 at stake in a gigantic vote spanning six weeks, according to the near-final results of the count.

With this feat the BJP again holds the absolute majority alone, and once again smashed the historic party of Congress, which won only 52 constituencies.

The 68-year-old head of government met with his party officials on Friday morning. He is expected to hold a cabinet meeting later in the day and then resign in Parliament, which will formally dissolve the outgoing Parliament.

Thursday night, the strong man of India was triumphantly greeted by a shower of rose petals and the cheers of his supporters at the BJP headquarters in New Delhi.

These parliamentary elections "reflect the commitment of the people to democracy, and the whole world will have to take note of it and recognize the democratic strength of India," said the son of a simple tea salesman from Gujarat (west of India) to its supporters.

"Every moment of my time, every part of my body, will only be dedicated to the people of this country," said Narendra Modi, whose first term as head of this nation's 1.3 billion people was marked by a politico-religious tension and a polarization of his society.

The Prime Minister has campaigned on an anxiety-provoking and nationalist security speech, setting himself up as the country's protector, allowing him to ignore his mixed economic record.

The list of challenges that lie ahead for the next five years is considerable. In particular, it will have to tackle the weakness of job creations and accelerate the pace of growth, which is below the potential and needs of the giant in South Asia.

"The real question is will Modi be able to deliver on its economic promises, for example by creating the large number of jobs needed?" Said Champa Patel, analyst for the Chatham House think tank.

The Congress Party led by Rahul Gandhi, who for a long time dominated Indian politics after independence in 1947, was healing his wounds. Ultimate Humiliation: Heir Rahul Gandhi lost the family district of Amethi (Uttar Pradesh, North), a traditional stronghold of Nehru Gandhi.

"The leadership of the Congress has clearly failed, they are discredited and bankrupt," said AFP Kanchan Gupta of the Observer Research Foundation.

"It is amazing that Rahul Gandhi has not yet resigned," Ramachandra Guha, a renowned historian, said on Twitter. "Congress should get rid of the Dynasty (Nehru-Gandhi)".

Source: Seychelles News Agency

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