Riding on a massive Modi wave sweeping through most parts of India, the BJP was set to return to power Thursday as it led in 292 seats while the Congress trailed far behind with 51, according to trends released by the Election Commission for all 542 seats that went to polls.
The BJP Parliamentary board meeting is to be held later today. The PM will also meet BJP workers at the party office at 5.30 pm today.
If the trends stay until final results, the BJP would have improved on its 2014 performance when it had won 282 seats on its own in the 543-member Lok Sabha. Adding the seats won by its allies, the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance could win 343 seats, up from 336 in 2014.
Markets cheered the trends, as the benchmark BSE Sensex touched 40,000 for the first time and NSE Nifty breached the 12,000 level. The rupee appreciated 14 paise to 69.51 against the US dollar trade.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi — Many Congratulations for securing such a big victory for the BJP. I am thankful to the people,” External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj tweeted.
The results are a resounding endorsement of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popularity, his government’s achievements in the last five years and his campaign, which centred around national security and nationalism.
He also relentlessly attacked the Congress Party for what he called its dynastic legacy, and blamed it for the country’s woes.
The opposition had criticised the BJP campaign as divisive and polarising. Still, the trend shows that the Modi wave has swept across geographies, caste lines, age, gender and economic status.
(With agency inputs)