The BJP's good performance in the assembly elections in three northeast states show people's solid trust in democracy and the democratic process, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said at the party's headquarters in Delhi today.
The BJP has comfortably won in Tripura. It is leading in Nagaland with its partner Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party. In Meghalaya, the BJP got a call from the National People's Party to prevent a hung house.
"The results of these elections show people's strong faith in democracy and democratic institutions in the country," PM Modi said. The audience responded by shouting "Modi, Modi, Modi".
"The way the northeast poll results have been extensively highlighted shows the region is neither distant from Dilli nor dil (heart)," PM Modi said.
The Prime Minister credited the hard work done by BJP workers in the three northeast states for the good show. "Our party workers in the northeast work much, much harder than all of us here. They face many challenges," PM Modi said, drawing a huge applause.
He asked the audience to turn on their mobile phone flashlight and wave them as a symbolic signal of thanks to the people of northeast.
The BJP-IPFT (Indigenous Progressive Front of Tripura) alliance returned to power in Tripura winning 33 of the state's 60 seats. Meghalaya was heading for a hung house when Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, whose National People's Party is leading the field, dialled the BJP's chief strategist Amit Shah. In Nagaland, the BJP and its partner NDPP (Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party) are leading on 37 seats in the 60-member assembly.
The BJP says it has been able to retain power in the three northeast states because people appreciate the Modi government's infrastructure projects and other programmes to develop the region fast.
Many parts of the region suffered from months-long blockades, insurgency and violence under earlier regimes, PM Modi said.
Before PM Modi's address, BJP chief JP Nadda blamed the opposition Congress for neglecting the northeast for decades. He said the opposition party turned the region into "an ATM to withdraw money".