Lazy eyes listen
According to voting results released on Sunday night, India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has won regional elections in three of five states where legislative assembly elections were held in November.
The BJP has retained power in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh while ousting the Congress, India’s primary opposition party, from office in two other heartland states, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh. The Congress Party, on the other hand, won in Telangana, a southern Indian state ruled by the regional party Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) since 2014.
The vote counting took place on Sunday in all four states, with the exception of Mizoram, the fifth state that went to the polls last month, where it was postponed until Monday owing to inclement weather.
The outcomes of the assembly elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared on Sunday, are a victory for the two fundamental themes espoused by his government: self-reliance (‘Aatmanirbharta’) and “development for all” (‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikaas’). While the vote count was still ongoing, the Prime Minister addressed party members at the BJP headquarters in the national capital, calling the saffron party’s triumph in the assembly elections “historic and unprecedented.” “This hattrick of victories has given the guarantee for the 2024 hattrick,” he added, alluding to next year’s general elections, in which he would seek a third consecutive term.
Modi suggested that the results of the latest state elections, which are being touted as a ‘semifinal’ ahead of next year’s national polls, indicate that a third term next year is guaranteed. “The results … indicate that the people of India are firmly with politics of good governance and development, which the BJP stands for,” the prime minister posted on X.
Meanwhile, in Telangana, the BRS leadership admitted defeat before the vote count was completed. Minister K.T. Rama Rao, the party’s working president, stated on a social media site on December 3 afternoon that the party is “grateful to the people of Telangana for giving two consecutive terms of governance.”
Exit polls initially revealed a split in opinion, with some favouring the BJP in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan and others favouring the Congress in Telangana and Chhattisgarh.
While the BJP’s victories in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, and Rajasthan highlighted Modi’s widespread popularity after nearly a decade in power, it also raises issues about the Congress’ leadership, particularly Rahul Gandhi, as well as the importance of India’s oldest state.