Modi’s ‘invincible’ image suffers setback, opposition gets new lease of life: World media

The Uncut

Washington/London. In the Lok Sabha elections, the Indian voters have not only “destroyed” the ‘invincible’ image of Prime Minister Narendra Modi but have also given a new lease of life to the opposition. The international media has defined the results of India’s general elections in this way.

According to the results of the Lok Sabha elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won 240 out of 543 seats and the Congress won 99 seats. The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) has easily crossed the majority mark of 272 in the 543-member Lok Sabha. However, the BJP has lost its absolute majority.

The New York Times began its report by commenting, “Suddenly, the invincible image built around Narendra Modi is gone.” Describing the results as “surprising”, it said that these results are “a major reversal after a decade of Modi’s tenure”.
‘The Washington Post’ wrote, “When the final election results came in on Tuesday, voters showed dissatisfaction with the status quo and put this continuously winning leader in a difficult position.” The editorial of ‘Wall Street Journal’ said that the election results show that Indians have high expectations from their leaders and they have once again used the world’s largest democracy to warn those leaders to do better.

It says, “The question now is whether Modi will take this electoral warning seriously or resort to even more communal and authoritarian methods.” The Post wrote, “Although Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party came in first and is in a better position to form a government with its allies in the coming days, the BJP’s performance was not good compared to its 2014 performance.”

CNN said, “In this election, Modi had set a target of winning 400 seats in the lower house of Parliament, i.e. Lok Sabha. But as the results started coming on Tuesday, it became clear that the ruling BJP would not have enough numbers even for a majority and would have to rely on old coalition partners to remain in government for the first time since coming to power a decade ago.” BBC said in its report that this mandate symbolizes a surprising revival for the opposition coalition led by the Congress Party. The election results are also completely different from the exit polls (post-poll surveys) and pre-poll surveys.

It said that the election results show that the shine of ‘Brand Modi’ has diminished somewhat, which indicates that Modi is also vulnerable to the anti-incumbency wave. It said that in other words, Modi is not as invincible as many of his supporters believe. This gives new hope to the opposition. BBC said that these results will also give a new energy to the Congress-led opposition.

Time magazine quoted Milan Vaishnav, director of the South Asia program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, as saying in its report, “This election is undoubtedly a setback for Modi and the BJP.” It said, “After ten years in power, it was in many ways a referendum on his track record in office and clearly many Indians are feeling restless and uncomfortable.” It said that Modi will now have to face a stronger opposition than in the last decade.

It said, “His (outgoing Prime Minister Modi) poor performance will have political consequences. At the very least, the BJP will have to rely more on its coalition partners.” The Wall Street Journal described the election results as an electoral setback for Modi. An article published in The Guardian said that the election results indicate that Modi has not received the landslide victory that many had predicted. CBC News said that the election results have given a ‘new lease of life’ to the Congress party.

American mass media company ‘Vox Media’ stressed that India’s election shows that the world’s largest democracy is still a democracy. China’s state-run newspaper ‘China Daily’ quoted analysts as saying that in its third term, the Modi-led government may focus its attention on domestic issues, prioritize public welfare and fair distribution of development benefits and may even take a soft stand on Hindu nationalism.

Pakistan’s newspaper ‘Dawn’ wrote in its editorial, “Modi’s victory, even if weak, is certainly not a good sign for Pakistan. During Modi’s last two terms as Prime Minister, the relations between the two countries had deteriorated a lot. The Indian Prime Minister had increased aggression against Pakistan in the elections.” It said that India should reach out to Pakistan and Pakistan should respond positively to any move by India.

The editorial said that naturally, trust restoration will take time but long-term peace in South Asia is not possible without improving Pakistan-India relations. The leading Pakistani newspaper said, “India cannot avoid the question of Kashmir; both sides should at least start a dialogue. India’s new government should start afresh with Pakistan.”

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