India often extolled for its miscellaneous cultural heritage and democratic ideals has seen a dramatic transformation in its socio-political landscape in the past few years. The country is commencing its 18th elections of Lok Sabha which is also known as the lower house of Indian parliament. The first phase of elections began on the 19th of April and it will comprise 7 phases. The Election Commission of India will announce the result on the 4th of June. The ruling party BJP led by Prime Minister Modi is expected to win most of the seats out of 543 seats.

The rise of the BJP in India will not only further deteriorate the situation of minority rights but will also add to the complexities of its relations with its neighbours and the world.

More than 968 million voters will be using the power of their votes to elect the candidates contesting the elections which makes India the largest democracy in the world. The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) led by the BJP party and the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) led by the Congress are fighting the elections against each other. There are so many controversies regarding the elections such as the arrest of Arvind Kejriwal leading the Aam Aadmi party who was favourite to win from Delhi.

Secondly, the income tax department of India froze the assets of Congress Which faced difficulties in running their campaign effectively. The rise of Modi and his extremist ideology of Hindutva will not only damage the already distorted social fabric of the country. Secondly, his policies will also increase the gap between the haves and have-nots.

The unemployment in a country where 93 percent of Indian youth aged 15 to 29 years are unemployed according to a recent report by the International Labour Organization. Modi government has also failed to tackle the issue of Naxalite movement in the country.

The policy of the BJP has also antagonized the farmers of India. The government of Modi also passed laws like the Citizens Ship Amendment Act which threatened the very existence of the minorities living in a state dominated by the Hindutva mindset. On the external front because of India’s offensive and aggressive posture the countries of the South Asian region also feel threatened by India.

The country’s hegemonic ambitions make the situation worse. India has not only increased tensions with China by acting as a vessel state of the West but the country is not on friendly terms with its second neighbor Pakistan. To curb the Khalistan movement India also targeted individuals on foreign soil which has also deteriorated its relations with the Western world. The alliance of the UK, Australia, the US America, and Canada has also criticized India.

If this trend continues in the future India will also lose the support of its regional allies and also on the world stage. The election process, spanning six weeks, involved nearly a billion eligible voters and has been described as the world’s largest democratic exercise. However, it has also raised concerns.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s victory could signal a shift away from the pluralistic India that the West has embraced as an ally against an authoritarian China.

His party’s well-stocked campaign coffers, allegedly filled by oligarchs and through tax and investigative agency abuses, have contributed to this outcome. The results, expected to confirm Modi’s rule, will be announced on June 4. India’s transformation is evident in various aspects. The middle class has grown, digitalization has taken hold, and infrastructure improvements have occurred.

Over 900 million people now have internet access, making India the world’s second-largest online market. However, poverty persists among vulnerable groups, and regional disparities have widened. Life expectancy varies significantly across states, with Modi’s stronghold in northern India showing lower life expectancy compared to anti-Modi bastions in the south. Environmental progress remains a challenge during Modi’s tenure, with India ranking poorly in air quality.

Furthermore, India is emerging as a global power, asserting itself not only in South Asia but also on the world stage. As Indian Foreign Minister Subramanyam Jaishankar noted, a nationalist outlook will shape India’s diplomacy, something the world needs to adapt to. These elections have far-reaching consequences, impacting India’s domestic landscape and its role in international affairs.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email