Sundeep Bhutoria

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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The Modi factor

May 13, 2014: I arrived in Kolkata from New York. Yesterday I went and cast my vote.
Among the NRIs in USA, there was the talk of Indian elections everywhere and everybody had just one question - Will Modi-led NDA be able to form the government on its own or will it need the support of other parties?
I have never before seen such a clear opinion on the emergence of a single Prime Ministerial candidate prior to the election results. The Modi factor or pheneomenon is as wide a topic of discussion at home as it is in among the Indian diaspora, including USA.
In fact, this whole elections has undergone a change in the character and approach. It been more on the lines of the American Presidential elections where voters exercise their franchise on the basis of who the candidate is. 
Another factor was the use of technology. Mr Modi very effectively, in one of the first ever electoral campaigns in the world, leveraged 3D technology during elections and sent his hologram image to rallies of supporters in 1,400-plus locations across the country during the election season.
India, it seems, has by and large voted for the Prime Ministerial candidate rather than political parties. I wonder if this is a new electoral trend that has come to stay. If so, then it is a paradigm shift. Who knows, India's politics may undergo a major catharsis where one would have to look at it from a new perspective in future. Caste and federal equations could go haywire.
Kolkata is really hot and humid compared to the excellent weather in New York.
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