PM Set For Historic 3rd Term, Calls It "Victory Of Biggest Democracy"

Lok Sabha Election 2024 Results: The campaign has been long-drawn and the mood of the voters especially difficult to read in this election.

Lok Sabha Election 2024: Counting begins

New Delhi: A third term for Prime Minister Narendra Modi appears certain with the NDA hovering around the 300 mark. But the day belongs to the resurgent Opposition, which performed way over the modest expectations raised by exit polls.

Here are the Top 10 points in this big story:

  1. Addressing the nation from the BJP's HQ in Delhi after it became apparent the party will form the new government - albeit with much-needed support from NDA partners - Prime Minister Narendra Modi thanked voters and said, "Today's victory (is) a victory of world's biggest democracy."

  2. The BJP, which was aiming for 370 seats, and set the NDA a target of 400-plus, appears to be running way behind, let down by Uttar Pradesh, which sends a whopping 80 lawmakers to the Lok Sabha. At 11 pm, the BJP was ahead on 241 seats, the NDA on 294. The INDIA bloc is ahead on 231 seats, the Congress on 100.

  3. The BJP applecart appears to have been upset by the heartland state of Uttar Pradesh, which has pushed the INDIA bloc -- Samajwadi Party and the Congress -- ahead in 44 of 80 seats at 7 pm. The BJP is leading on 32. The BJP had swept Uttar Pradesh in 2014 and held its ground in 2019. This time most exit polls had predicted an edge for the party. 

  4. Two of the other battleground states have also not gone the BJP's way. In Bengal, the party's big hope, it could fare worse than in 2019, leading in only 12 seats at 11 pm. Mamata Banerjee's  Trinamool Congress appears to have recovered much of the lost ground and is ahead in 29 seats.

  5. Maharashtra appears to have made its disapproval clear of the political manoeuvrings in Shiv Sena and the Nationalist Congress Party. The Uddhav Thackeray faction is ahead on 9 seats to Shinde Sena's 7. The Ajit Pawar faction of NCP is ahead on just one seat and his uncle Sharad Pawar on 7. The BJP is ahead on 10 seats and the Congress on 13.

  6. The BJP's losses, as expected, are being offset from Odisha, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and to an extent, Telangana. In Andhra Pradesh, Chandrababu Naidu is heading for a landslide victory, with a clear lead in 158 of 175 constituencies. Sources said the oath ceremony will be on June 9. In Odisha, the BJP won a resounding victory, ending the 25-year run of Naveen Patnaik's Biju Janata Dal.

  7. "People have placed their faith in NDA, for a third consecutive time! This is a historical feat in India's history. I bow to the Janata Janardan for this affection and assure them that we will continue the good work done in the last decade to keep fulfilling the aspirations of people," PM Modi tweeted.  

  8. The campaign has been intense and drawn out, and the mood of the voters difficult to read in this election. Three exit polls have predicted a 400-plus score for the BJP-led NDA. The rest differ only in the margin of the NDA victory -- conclusions the Opposition has trashed. Exit polls have always had mixed success in the country.

  9. As with every election, the BJP unleashed its formidable election machinery early, and launched a star-studded campaign that focussed on development, economy and a vision for the 100-year anniversary of Independence. Backing it up were the promises met -- the scrapping of Article 370 and the construction of the Ayodhya Ram temple.

  10. The big difference was the Opposition's offensive against the ruling coalition, a long way from the lack of cohesiveness of 2019. While the beginning was shaky and in parts, patchy -- like the Congress versus Trinamool contest in Bengal and Congress versus AAP in Punjab -- the narrative on a change in constitution and scrapping of reservation made an impact.

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