June 15, 2024

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Indian Prime Minister Modi appoints the government to form a coalition government after his party lost the majority

Indian Prime Minister Modi appoints the government to form a coalition government after his party lost the majority

NEW DELHI (AP) — Narendra Modi, newly sworn in for a third consecutive term, appointed a cabinet Monday that retained his top ministers in crucial portfolios even though his Hindu nationalist party lost their majority in a surprise election result.

There was no change in the four major ministries. Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, who has led the country’s foreign policy for the past five years, has been reinstated as External Affairs Minister. Amit Shah will continue as India’s Home Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman will remain as Finance Minister, and Rajnath Singh will remain as Defense Minister.

India’s six-week election ended last week, with Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party failing to secure a majority on its own after scoring landslide victories in 2014 and 2019. However, his National Democratic Alliance coalition won enough seats to form a government. The government is with him at its head.

this is the first time Bharatiya Janata Party under Modi India needed support from its regional allies to form a government ten years after it controlled a majority in the Indian Parliament.

Indian Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar (centre left), Indian President Draupadi Murmu (centre), and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, wearing a blue waistcoat, pose for a group photo with the new Minister of State and the new Minister of State during the swearing-in ceremony at the Indian Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi, India, Sunday, June 9, 2024. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Invitees chant slogans during Narendra Modi's swearing-in ceremony as Indian Prime Minister at the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi, India, Sunday, June 9, 2024. The 73-year-old leader is the second Indian Prime Minister to retain power for a third term.  (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Invitees chant slogans during Narendra Modi’s swearing-in ceremony as Indian Prime Minister at the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi, India, Sunday, June 9, 2024. The 73-year-old leader is the second Indian Prime Minister to retain power for a third term. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

People watch Narendra Modi take oath as Prime Minister of India before President Draupadi Murmu at Rashtrapati Bhawan, in New Delhi, India, Sunday, June 9, 2024. The 73-year-old leader is only the second Indian Prime Minister to retain power for a third term.  (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

People watch Narendra Modi take oath as Prime Minister of India before President Draupadi Murmu at Rashtrapati Bhawan, in New Delhi, India, Sunday, June 9, 2024. The 73-year-old leader is only the second Indian Prime Minister to retain power for a third term. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

The final results of the elections showed that Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party won 240 seats, far short of the required 272 seats to achieve a majority. Together, the NDA coalition parties won 293 seats in the 543-seat House of Representatives.

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Modi (73 years old) is the second Indian Prime Minister to win a third consecutive term.

On Sunday, he and 71 ministers took the oath of office at India’s presidential palace, Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi. 61 of them were from the BJP while the rest were NDA allies of the BJP. Among them were only seven women, and none of them were from the Muslim community, the largest minority in India that enjoys political representation. Lawmakers have also shrunk Under Modi.

The results, which defied exit polls that predicted a landslide for the BJP, left Modi’s coalition government largely reliant on two key regional allies – the Telugu Desam Party in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh and the Janata Dal (United) in the eastern state of Bihar – to stay in power. . power. On Sunday, two deputies from each party were sworn in as ministers.

Bihar Chief Minister and Janta Dal United leader Nitish Kumar, right, followed by Telugu Desam Party leader Chandrababu Naidu arrive at the Indian Rashtrapati Bhavan to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Narendra Modi as Indian Prime Minister in New Delhi, India, Sunday, June 9, 2024. ( AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Bihar Chief Minister and Janta Dal United leader Nitish Kumar, right, followed by Telugu Desam Party leader Chandrababu Naidu arrive at the Indian Rashtrapati Bhavan to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Narendra Modi as Indian Prime Minister in New Delhi, India, Sunday, June 9, 2024. ( AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

The sudden drop in support for the BJP means Modi needs support from his regional allies to stay in power, and experts say he may have to. Adapting to the style of governance He’s not used to that.

Modi is an avowed Hindu nationalist Champion of the country’s Hindu majorityThey constitute 80% of India’s population of 1.4 billion people. His supporters credit him with rapid economic growth and improving India’s global standing since he came to power.

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But critics say he did, too It undermined India’s democracy and its status as a secular state With attacks launched by Hindu nationalists against minorities in the country, especially Muslims, the space available for opposition and free media is shrinking. His political opponents who are now More daring than beforeThey also campaigned around his government’s mixed economic record, pointing to high unemployment and growing inequality despite strong growth, which analysts say resonated with voters.