Modi’s election win is a victory for far right Hindu nationalism – India’s secular democracy is under threat

Posted In: News Date:May 23rd, 2019

Narendra Modi has won again in India, with initial results showing his vote share may have even risen by 10 per cent. While the post-mortem for main opposition party Congress begins in earnest, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of which Modi is leader will celebrate deep into the night.

But while Modi’s supporters might rejoice, his victory poses a very serious question. Does the continuing electoral success of a far-right Hindu nationalist demagogue finally mark the end of secular democracy in India?

In the wake of Britain’s colonial rule, India’s democracy was conceived of as secular with a civic form of citizenship. Yet when Modi’s BJP came to power on 2014, critics warned against the challenges that democratic institutions were set to face. These warnings were not far off the mark.