Home Latest News Narendra Modi Set for Third Term as Prime Minister of India

Narendra Modi Set for Third Term as Prime Minister of India

NDA coalition secures sufficient seats to form government as BJP loses simple majority in Parliament

by Staff Report

File photo. Tolga Akmen—AFP

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will likely be sworn in as Prime Minister of India for a third time on June 8 despite the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) losing its simple majority in Parliament, as allied parties pledged their continued support.

Securing far fewer seats than was projected by media and observers, Modi’s BJP would now require the support of all key allies to enact legislation, a far cry from his campaign slogan of “this time more than 400 [seats],” which would have allowed it the authority to singlehandedly alter the Constitution.

On Wednesday, the Telugu Desam Party of Andhra Pradesh and the Janata Dal of Bihar both pledged their support to Modi, saying they would remain with the National Democratic Alliance coalition. The same day, the federal cabinet formally recommended the dissolution of Parliament, a constitutional formality before Modi can form a new government.

Earlier this week, after an election that lasted over a month, the NDA won 293 seats in the 543-member Lok Sabha, more than the 272 needed to form government. However, the BJP only secured 240 seats, which hampers his campaign promises of major reforms. The first plans to fall by the wayside would likely be land and labor reforms, as the BJP’s worst showing comes from rural areas, indicating resistance to the plans highlighted during the campaign.

By contrast, the opposition alliance led by Rahul Gandhi’s Congress party won 230 seats, just 10 shy of the BJP and significantly higher than forecast ahead of the results. Congress alone won 99, almost double the 52 it had won in 2019.

Modi’s own victory in Varanasi, considered one of the holiest cities for Hindus, was also suggested his waning popularity, as his margin of victory declined from nearly 500,000 votes in the 2019 general election to a little more than 150,000 this year. Addressing a crowd of cheering party workers at the party headquarters late on Tuesday evening, Modi promised to work harder in his third term. “The blessings of the people for the third time after 10 years boosts our morale, gives new strength,” he said.

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