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India Election Gives Modi a 2nd Term. Here Are 5 Takeaways.


Afterhundreds of millions of Indians cast ballots across megacities, mountains andislands, Prime Minister Narendra Modi won the biggestre-election India has witnessed in decades.


Mr. Modi,68, has dominated Indiasince he won a first term in 2014. Many Indians praise his efforts to stamp outcorruption and bring development to poor regions, but his commitment toempowering the nation’s Hindu majority has raised fears in its Muslim minority.Mob lynchings have increased, and right-wing Hindus have felt emboldened topush an extreme agenda.


Manyvoters were drawn to Mr. Modi’s intense speaking style, his reputation forgetting things done and his carefully crafted image of being a tough defenderof India.He called himself the chowkidar — the watchman — and he has pushed a moreforceful foreign policy than India has pursued in years, including standing upto China, nearly going to warwithPakistan and drawing closer to the United States.


Part of Mr. Modi’s appeal also lies inhis Hindu nationalist beliefs, which emphasize India’s Hindu heritage and seek tofurther empower the country’s Hindu majority, making up about 80 percent of thepopulation.


Indian Hindu hard-liners attending a rally in New Delhi calling for theconstruction of a temple on the site of the demolished 16th-century mosque,located in Ayodhya, in December.


2、The Hindu right is ascendant.


Mr. Modimay also seek to change the special laws regarding the disputed territory of Kashmir,which has a large Muslim population and is claimed by both India and Pakistan,to make it easier for Hindus to move there and buy property.


Hindu extremists are likely to feel emboldenedby Mr. Modi’s election win. The prime minister came up in politics through afar-right Hindu nationalist group, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, which hejoined as a boy. A Hindu nationalist who once belonged to that group, Nathuram Godse,assassinated the independence leader Mohandas K. Gandhi in 1948.

莫迪的成功连任,可能会助长印度教极端分子的胆子。这位总理是通过一个极右的印度教民族主义团体 -- Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh上位从政的,他从小就加入了这一团体。一名曾属于该组织的印度教民族主义者Nathuram Godse在1948年暗杀了印度独立领袖甘地。

An admirer of Mr. Godse and a member of Mr. Modi’s B.J.P., Sadhvi Pragya Thakur, ran for a Parliament seat in the election, even as she was awaiting trial, accused of a role in a 2008 terrorist attack.

另外,一名Godse(前文暗杀甘地的任务)的崇拜者,同时也是莫迪代表的人民党的成员 --Sadhvi Pragya Thakur也在竞选议会席位,尽管她正在等待审判,其被指控参与了2008年的一次恐怖袭击。

Ms. Thakur won that seat on Thursday, just days after she praised Gandhi’s assassin as a “patriot.”


The leader of the Indian National Congressparty, Rahul Gandhi, second from left, in New Delhi, on Tuesday


3、The Congress party was eviscerated.


Resultsfor the opposition Indian National Congress party, once an unbeatable politicalforce — it led Indiato independence, counted Gandhi as a member and governed for most of thedecades since — were dismal. By Thursday evening, the party had won or wasleading in just 51 seats, a small improvement from 2014 but still one of itsworst showings ever.

反对党 -- 印度国大党,曾经是一支不可战胜的政治力量,它领导印度走向独立,甘地也是该党成员,并在此后几十年的大部分时间里掌权,这次的结果令人沮丧。直到周四晚上,该党赢得或领先的席位只有51个,比2014年略有改善,但仍然是有史以来最糟糕的一次。

As realityset in on Thursday evening, Congress leaders said they needed to revamp theirapproach to elections. They admitted that the B.J.P. had raised more money andrun a superior campaign. Rahul Gandhi, the head of Congress and thegreat-grandson of India’sfirst prime minister, conceded defeat in a brief news conference in New Delhi. Lookingheartbroken, he told supporters to prepare for a long battle ahead.


Manyinvestors are confident that another Modi government will be good for business,and his victory was seen as a vote for stability. During his first term, Mr.Modi simplified a byzantine tax system, cracked down on corruption andoverhauled India’scorporate bankruptcy system.


After it became clear that Mr. Modi’sgovernment was returning to power, India’s stock market shot up 2percent, to a record high.


Thoughsmall- and medium-size industries have not always kept up with the pace ofchange, the last thing many in the business community wanted was a fracturedcoalition government, run by small regional parties that struggle to get along.


Votersfelt similarly about the economy. Analysts said India’sextorate was clearly not upset enough about the deep-seated challenges facingIndia,including stagnant job growth, to vote against Mr. Modi. Many wanted to give hima second chance, seeing his first five years as not enough time to make thesweeping changes he has promised.


The turnout was a recordhigh, at 67.1 percent.


And despite strong passions, gargantuan numbers and highstakes, the elections have nearly concluded with no major allegations of fraudor rigging. Most of the voting was done on electronic voting machines thatseemed to work just fine, according to observers and election officials.