News / Asia

    Indian Opposition Leader's Win in Gujarat Sets Stage for National Run

    Narendra Modi, chief minister for Gujarat state, greets supporters during the celebrations of Gujarat assembly elections in Ahmadabad, India, Dec. 20, 2012.
    Narendra Modi, chief minister for Gujarat state, greets supporters during the celebrations of Gujarat assembly elections in Ahmadabad, India, Dec. 20, 2012.
    Anjana Pasricha
    In India’s western state of Gujarat, the opposition Hindu Nationalist Party is set to win a sweeping, fifth consecutive victory in state-wide elections.

    The victory could help the state’s controversial leader, Nerendra Modi, emerge as a prime ministerial candidate, despite accusations that he failed to control deadly Hindu-Muslim riots a decade ago.  

    Gujarat has been a stronghold of the opposition of the Bharatiya Janata Party for a long time. But the latest convincing victory in state-wide elections is credited to  Modi, who has governed the state since 2001. Prakash Javedkar is a spokesperson for the BJP.  

    “It is the fifth consecutive victory which we are celebrating in Gujarat," he said. "Victory of mixture of good leadership, good governance and good organization.”

    Modi’s victory was widely expected in a state that has become an economic powerhouse under his watch. He is credited with rooting out corruption, building infrastructure and creating a business-friendly environment. That is in stark contrast to many others parts of the country, where graft and lack of governance have set back the economy.

    However, Modi remains one of the country’s most controversial leaders, because he is blamed for not doing enough to control riots in 2002 that killed more than 1,000 people, mostly Muslims. His critics accuse him of being anti-Muslim and fear he is a divisive leader in a secular country. Modi denies the accusation.  

    Several Western countries have treated him as a pariah. The United States has denied him a visa for his alleged role in the 2002 riots.

    But, as Modi grows in prominence, and as his state emerges as a magnet for international investors, some are reversing their stand.  For example, Britain recently ended a 10-year boycott of the controversial leader.  

    Some political analysts say Modi’s victory will catapult him to the national stage, where he could emerge as the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate in national elections in 2014. They say he is admired for spurring development in Gujarat and is seen as a strong leader in a country where the ruling Congress Party has been widely criticized for weak leadership.  

    Political analyst Tavleen Singh told local media the country is looking for a leader like Modi.  

    “We need somebody who is going to say, 'Listen, what this country needs desperately is development' and Modi has shown that in his Gujarat model, that works,” Singh said.

    Although the ruling Congress Party was disappointed in Gujarat, it is set to win a smaller state, Himachal Pradesh, in the north. State elections are being keenly tracked in India because of their likely impact on the next national elections.

    You May Like

    Vietnam Mulls Tough Measures for ‘Misbehaving’ Chinese Tourists

    Move comes after footage surfaced online of Chinese travelers harassing a banana hawker in Da Nang

    The Complicated Math of AIDS

    A lot, and then some: the huge - and complicated - cost of the AIDS epidemic

    Pakistan Social Media Star's Honor Killing Fuels Debate

    Qandeel Baloch's murder puts spotlight on deadly tradition and other mistreatment of women

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: john2379 from: USA
    December 20, 2012 2:49 PM
    N. Modi is the hero of Gujarat but if he will leave Gujarat and take BJP leadership in Delhi, he will be doomed in political game within a year or two. Why? Because he has no experience of working with several regional and tribal and racial parties on central level. (ii) He has ruled Gujarat as an authoritarian leader with almost 2/3 majority and even not allowing his own ministers to carry out their work. He has not considered opposition party has any voice or initiated any discussion with them for any matter. (iii) He has very short temper and no tolerance, which will make him unacceptable in many quarters of BJP

    (iv) He likes to have yes men around him and like bragging beyond his reach (v) He has proved beyond doubts by his rule and conduct during the riots and selection of all right wing Hindu candidates and ministers for the last 11 years; depicted his image as the anti-Muslim leader neglecting 10% major Muslim minority of India and making them meaningless, which will make him almost impossible as a national leader. (vi) He failed to reduce gap between the poor and rich in Gujarat and favored large industrialist houses allotting hundreds of acres farm and government land almost free. Really, Congress would like him to be next PM and fail soon in his own game.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Borderi
    X
    July 22, 2016 12:30 AM
    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.
    Video

    Video Number of Syrian Refugees Arriving in US Jumps

    The United States is committed to resettling 85,000 refugees from around the world by October. Of that number, 10,000 will come from Syria and already some 4,000 Syrian refugees have arrived in the United States, many of them settling in the state of Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports from Chicago, their arrival is not the end of a difficult journey to find peace and stability.
    Video

    Video Rio’s Trams Await Olympic Tourists

    Over the past century, many cities around the world replaced electric trams, prone to breakdowns and backups, with faster and more spacious buses. But for some reason restored antique trams are a huge tourist attraction. So it’s no wonder the authorities in Rio de Janeiro are busy restoring their city’s old tram line ahead of the Summer Olympic Games. VOA’ George Putic reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora