India’s Shock Election Result Shows Democracy Is Still Thriving
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India’s Shock Election Result Shows Democracy Is Still Thriving


APLN member C Uday Bhaskar highlighted that while the BJP’s underperformance shocked supporters and observers, Indian voters have restored hope in the country’s democratic process.

The ill-conceived demonetisation policy enacted by Modi’s government in 2016 helped push many Indians into dire poverty, their struggles exacerbated by the effects of the lockdowns during the Covid-19 pandemic. That the government has to continue its free grains programme for those living below the poverty line is testimony to this reality.
Accusations of crony capitalism have been a regular feature of the last decade during Modi’s tenure. Unemployment remains widespread, but India’s demographic advantage means it still is likely to become the world’s third-largest economy after China and the United States. Barring unforeseen events, this could happen as early as 2027.
When Modi begins his third term as prime minister, there is likely to be continuity in India’s external relations and security policies as he seeks to enhance the country’s profile on the global stage. Much will depend on how the relationship between India and China unfolds in the next few years, as well as the manner in which China manages its relationship with the US.
The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit in Astana, Kazakhstan, in July will be an opportunity for Modi to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping, but whether anything of substance will come of that is unclear. Both leaders have domestic political considerations to navigate and long-term aspirations yet to be realised. How they harmonise these divergent influences will shape geopolitics in Asia and beyond, but for now June 4 will be remembered as the day when the sagacious Indian voter restored hope in the democratic process.
The full article can be accessed here.
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