India has re-elected Modi. Going by the track record of the previous five years of Modi’s governance, this inflexion point in the journey of post-independent India can accelerate India’s economic development. In recent times, Russia, UAE, Palestine, Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia have conferred their highest civilian awards on Modi. His initiatives like the Global Solar Alliance and International Yoga Day created new opportunities for India although the world media has failed to pick this strong undercurrent of love and respect Modi has gained on the world stage, not just within India.
Today India’s opposition lies decimated. In the face of an imminent defeat, the uncanny alliance of opposition parties started blaming the electronic voting machines (EVMs). They didn’t inspire confidence as they had no problem with the EVMs when they won in three states last year. Similarly, when India launched a surgical strike on a terrorist camp in Pakistan earlier this year, the Congress party claimed to have launched several surgical strikes during their earlier tenure in the government, a claim that was subsequently debunked by the Indian armed forces.
Modi has time and again reaffirmed that he is wedded to the Hindu scriptures that implore one to respect all religions as offering different paths to the same God (“ekam sat vipra bahuda vadanti”). This re-election presents an unmissable opportunity to India led by Modi to demonstrate leadership in establishing world peace, following the core tenets of Hinduism that are rooted in truth, righteousness, peace, love, and non-violence.
JP Tamvada, Professor, University of Southampton
Sr Fellow, IndiaGlobal