The mandate of the 2024 Lok Sabha election is historic in multiple ways. The people of India have bestowed upon the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led NDA alliance a third consecutive term. It is the first time since 1962 that a ruling dispensation is returning to power for the third time. The PM Modi-led government navigated incredibly tough terrain in its second term, facing challenges such as the Covid-19 pandemic, global economic slowdown, geopolitical instability with wars in Europe and West Asia, the return of the Taliban in Afghanistan, an increasingly unstable Pakistan, and a hostile China. Despite these difficulties, the government maintained peace in India..

Additionally, it expanded India’s influence on international affairs, safeguarded its borders, and fostered domestic economic growth. The electorate has voted in the affirmative for PM Modi’s decade of leadership, characterized by development, welfare policies, national security, and modernization. He is the most popular and formidable mass leader in the democratic world today. The results indicate a clear preference for continuity, stability, and determined leadership of PM Modi.

The election also highlighted that electoral success in India hinges on a party’s ability to effectively aggregate various castes and communities, manage social contradictions, and address the aspirations of a diverse population. The Congress-led alliance conducted a highly divisive campaign, seeking to incite fear and hatred based on caste, religion, and region. The main plank was a disinformation campaign that the Constitution and, by extension, reservations would be in danger if the BJP were to return to power. In contrast, the BJP led a campaign built around nationalism, development, representation, social justice and a vision for a developed India.

Despite the setbacks by disinformation campaigns and fearmongering around reservations in some states, a significant portion of backward and Dalit castes have consistently supported the BJP. The broad appeal of a unified Hindu identity, along with aspirations for development and political representation, has mobilized these communities as dedicated supporters of the PM Modi-led BJP. Hindutva is currently the only ideology tapping into the widespread desire for modernity by promising equal rights, blurring caste boundaries, and driving rapid economic development. It has successfully withstood its most challenging election, where the Opposition pushed a divisive agenda based on caste identities.

The election result signifies the defeat of the Congress’s attempt to disrupt the national consensus and undermine the foundational principles of the Republic of India by reintroducing communal awards after nearly 100 years. The blatant anti-constitutional efforts by Congress and its allies to introduce Muslim reservations — a measure that was a precursor to the Partition and was firmly rejected by the Constituent Assembly — have been rejected by the people.

Festive offer

Similarly, attempts to undermine the reservations for Dalits and OBC castes by facilitating the backdoor entry of Muslim upper castes, who historically held ruling positions in large parts of India, were also defeated by the electorate.

This election is also an unequivocal mandate for the BJP’s welfare model over the Congress alliance’s freebies model. The new welfare model, pioneered by PM Modi since 2014, is built on objective criteria, aiming to ensure basic necessities, provide public provision of private goods for capacity building of the poor, and implement direct benefit transfers to eliminate middlemen.

This election has further underlined the importance of digital infrastructure and governance in the modern political landscape. The emphasis on digital India initiatives, promoting e-governance, digital literacy, and financial inclusion through digital platforms, has resonated with the younger, tech-savvy electorate.

For the first time, tens of millions have benefitted from government schemes, thus ending the dependency of the poor and marginalized on local power dynamics to access their entitlements. It ended old-style political feudalism, empowered the citizens, and lifted 25 crore people out of multidimensional poverty. And the people have chosen to support the BJP, rejecting unrealistic promises of freebies, which border on attempts to bribe them. The electorate has reposed faith in responsible fiscal policies, pro-growth economic policies and infrastructure build-up.

Another important highlight is the significant expansion of the BJP in southern and eastern India, especially in Bengal and Odisha, where regional parties that have ruled these states, like personal fiefdoms, have seen their influence wane. The BJP’s performance in Karnataka, Telangana, and Andhra Pradesh, along with its increasing voter share in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, demonstrates the failure of the Congress alliance’s divide-and-rule politics based on language and region. By mounting a stiff challenge to dynasty-based parties, the BJP has strengthened mass participation in the electoral process and expanded the scope of democracy in India.

In conclusion, the mandate of Lok Sabha 2024 is not just a testament to PM Modi’s leadership and the BJP’s policies but also a reflection of the changing aspirations and dynamics of the Indian electorate. The clear victory for the NDA alliance emphasizes a desire for continuity, stability, and visionary leadership that prioritizes development, social justice, and national security. As India continues to navigate complex global and domestic challenges, the decisive support for the PM Modi-led alliance signifies a strong and unified endorsement of their vision for a modern, prosperous, and inclusive India.

The writer is National Vice President of BJYM, BJP’s Youth Wing

Click here for real-time updates on the Lok Sabha Election Results 2024