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NDA formally elects Narendra Modi as its leader

  • Published at 01:46 pm May 25th, 2019
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivers his speech after the election results in New Delhi, India, May 23, 2019 Reuters

The prime minister is likely to meet President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday evening to stake claim to form the new government

Newly elected MPs of the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance met on Saturday to formally elect Prime Minister Narendra Modi as their leader to head the new government. The meeting was held in Central Hall of Parliament around 6 pm.

The prime minister is likely to meet President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday evening to stake claim to form the new government, PTI reported, quoting unidentified officials.

Shiromani Akali Dal’s Parkash Singh Badal proposed Modi’s name as the leader of the NDA parliamentary party, and it was endorsed by Janata Dal (United) chief Nitish Kumar and Shiv Sena leader Uddhav Thackeray, ANI reported.

“This is the beginning of achieving our resolution to build a New India,” Modi said addressing the NDA parliamentary meeting. “We must move ahead with new energy but at the same time also understand the Indian democracy...The conscience of the Indian voter is unparalleled, the voter never respects those hungry for power.”

The BJP leader said the NDA must walk “shoulder-to-shoulder” and that he is happy to be the one who takes the blame if anything goes wrong. “You (NDA members) have chosen me your leader, I think it is only part of the process. But I am one of you, just an equal,” he said.

People did not only vote for the BJP in 2014, they also showed the government the way...they were participants, Modi said. “When people have faith, instead of anti-incumbency, there is a pro-incumbency wave,” he added.

There is an increase of at least 25% in the number of votes the BJP got in 2014 and 2019, the prime minister said, adding that his party got as many more votes this time as the entire share of votes Donald Trump got in the United States presidential election in 2016. “In 17 states, the voters gave more than 50% votes to the BJP,” he said. “When I was campaigning I realised that the it is not Modi or BJP that is contesting the elections, it is the people of the country.”

Modi said the NDA this time has the largest number of women parliamentarians this time. This has been made possible due to women power, he adds.

Addressing the NDA meeting, BJP President Amit Shah said the mandate in this elections cleared that people want politics of performance and have sidelined dynasty and caste politics. “It has been a historic mandate,” Shah said. “Everyone believed that Modi government would return with a clear mandate. The nation has blessed us from all corners of the country.”

This article was first published on Scroll.in. Republished by special arrangement Referring to the Balakot air strike and the “surgical strikes”, Shah said the armed forces’ actions have showed that there is a leader in the country who “can go into the terrorists’ home and hit them back."

“This is a huge endorsement for politics of performance, people everywhere have voted for Modi – there was a tsunami of support,” he said.

Shah said Modi has not taken a single day off in the last 20 years. “He has worked 18 hours day after day,” Shah said addressing the meeting. “Modi took decisions which are good for nation, not to increase vote bank.”

Earlier on Saturday, Kovind dissolved the 16th Lok Sabha after Modi and his government submitted their resignations to pave way to form a new government at the Centre. The Election Commission of India, meanwhile, submitted the list of 542 newly-elected members of the Lok Sabha to the president that will enable him to initiate the formal process of new government formation.

Recording a massive victory, the Bharatiya Janata Party alone won 303 seats out of the 542 seats in the 2019 General Elections. The Congress secured only 52 seats, which is not enough for it to claim the post of the Leader of Opposition in the new House.

“The sun sets on this term but the brightness our work has brought will continue to illuminate the lives of millions. A new dawn awaits, a new term beckons,” Modi tweeted after resigning on Friday. “We are even more determined to fulfil the dreams of 130 crore Indians and create the New India all of us dreamt of.”

Unidentified officials told PTI that there is no decision taken on whether foreign dignitaries would be invited to the swearing-in ceremony. In 2014, Modi had invited the Heads of SAARC nations to his oath-taking ceremony as prime minister.

This article was first published on Scroll.in. Republished by special arrangement

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