India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has won a second term in office following the country’s marathon seven-phase general elections, the world’s largest democratic exercise ever.
The Hindu nationalist Modi is the first non-Congress prime minister in India to return to powerafter a full five-year term.
Official data from the Election Commission showed Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) winning 303 of the 542 seats, up from the 282 it had won in 2014. The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) has won 352 seats.
The opposition Indian National Congress (INC) won 52 seats. In 2014, the Congress was reduced to 44 – its worst performance ever.
About 67 percent of more than 900 million eligible voters cast their ballots in the staggered elections that the ruling party fought on issues of national security and a hardline Hindu agenda.