Challenges await in Modi's 3rd term

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will stay in power for the next five years, but the general election results show that his overall unifying strength may decline.

Modi declared victory on Tuesday after his alliance secured a majority in the lower house. But his own party fell far short of winning a majority on its own, and local media said he would start discussions about a coalition on Wednesday.

Vote counting started on Tuesday, and the Election Commission says all 543 seats have been declared.
Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party-led alliance won 293 seats. However, the BJP's strength fell to 240 seats.

That's far below the 303 claimed in the previous election whereas an opposition alliance sharply increased its strength, against the prediction of exit polls.
An expert says that growing dissatisfaction with government performance on key issues lies behind the result.

A University of Delhi professor, Sushila Ramaswamy, says the fact that the government failed to address core issues of unemployment and price rises, and the feeling that the government was not going to address it, are behind the result.

Rahul Gandhi, of the largest opposition Indian National Congress party, said the election clearly showed that the Indian people want Modi to step down.
The opposition alliance appears to be trying to gain support from minority parties in the current ruling coalition.