In a Historic Feat, PM Modi Gets Third Consecutive Term but Opposition Slows BJP Juggernaut

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India’s 18th elections to the lower house of parliament, the Lok Sabha, has just ended in what has been the world’s largest electoral exercise. Incumbent Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) will form the national government for a third consecutive term. Despite the BJP not meeting the majority seats required and therefore needing its coalition partners, industry observers are confident that India will not suffer blockades to reforms or slowdown in economic activity.

On June 4, 2024, six weeks after the nationwide general elections began, the results have once again made it possible for BJP leader Narendra Modi to form a government for the third consecutive term. This outcome will be historic and has previously only been achieved by India’s first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru.

As per several media reports, Modi is likely to be sworn in as India’s prime minister on June 9. The BJP party has won 240 of the 543 seats in the Lok Sabha, the lower chamber of the Indian parliament. However, since a political party needs to secure a minimum of 272 seats to form the national government, the BJP will firmly depend on its political coalition to meet the requisite numbers. This has been the biggest departure, in terms of its electoral performance, when compared to the previous general elections held in 2019.

Who are the two main political alliances in India?

There are two prominent political blocs in India, i.e., the National Democratic Alliance, or NDA, led by BJP leader Narendra Modi, and the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance, or ‘INDIA’, led by opposition leader Rahul Gandhi of the Indian National Congress (INC). 

Political parties in the NDA alliance (36)

Political parties in the INDIA alliance (26)

  • Bharatiya Janata Party
  • Shiv Sena (Eknath Shinde faction)
  • Nationalist Congress Party (Ajit Pavar faction)
  • Rashtriya Lok Janashakti Party (Pashupati Kumar Paras-led)
  • All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam
  • Apna Dal (Soneylal)
  • National People’s Party
  • Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party
  • All Jharkhand Students Union
  • Sikkim Krantikari Morcha
  • Mizo National Front
  • Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura
  • Naga People’s Front, Nagaland
  • Republican Party of India (Athawale)
  • Asom Gana Parishad
  • Pattali Makkal Katchi
  • Tamil Maanila Congress
  • United People’s Party Liberal
  • Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party
  • Shiromani Akali Dal (Sanyukt)
  • Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party
  • Jannayak Janta Party
  • Prahar Janshakti Party
  • Rashtriya Samaj Paksha
  • Jan Surajya Shakti Party
  • Kuki People’s Alliance
  • United Democratic Party (Meghalaya)
  • Hill State People’s Democratic Party
  • Nishad Party
  • All India N.R. Congress
  • HAM
  • Jana Sena party
  • Haryana Lokhit Party
  • Bharath Dharma Jana Sena
  • Kerala Kamaraj Congress
  • Puthiya Tamilagam
  • Lok Jan Shakti party (Ram Vilas Pasvan)
  • Gorkha National Liberation Front
  • Indian National Congress
  • All India Trinamool Congress (TMC)
  • Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK)
  • Aam Aadmi Party (AAP)
  • Janata Dal (United)
  • Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD)
  • Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM)
  • Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) – Sharad Pawar faction
  • Shiv Sena (UBT)
  • Samajwadi Party (SP)
  • Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD)
  • Apna Dal (Kamerawadi)
  • Jammu and Kashmir National Conference (NC)
  • Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)
  • Communist Party of India (Marxist)
  • Communist Party of India (CPI)
  • Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation
  • Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP)
  • All India Forward Bloc
  • Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK)
  • Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK)
  • Kongunadu Makkal Desia Katchi (KMDK)
  • Manithaneya Makkal Katchi (MMK)
  • Indian Union Muslim League (IUML)
  • Kerala Congress (M)
  • Kerala Congress (Joseph)

Where are the big gains for the NDA?

The NDA alliance gained a significant number of seats in Karnataka, bringing its total to 19 seats out of 28 in the state. While the BJP got 17 seats, its political ally Janata Dal (Secular) or JD(S) obtained 2 seats. The state is home to India’s Silicon Valley, Bengaluru.

Similarly, in Andhra Pradesh, out of a total of 25 Lok Sabha seats, the NDA parties won 21 in the state. With the victory of Suresh Gopi from the Thrissur constituency, the BJP has secured its first-ever Lok Sabha seat in Kerala, a state traditionally dominated by the coalition of left-wing political parties and the INC.

In addition, the BJP once again secured all the seats in the central state of Madhya Pradesh and national capital, Delhi. In Gujarat, the BJP won 25 out of 26 constituencies. All three states are strongholds of the BJP in parliament; interestingly, Delhi’s chief minister is currently from the Aam Admi Party (AAP), an ally of the INDIA block. However, AAP refused to make gains in the Lok Sabha elections.

States/union territories

Parliament (lower house) seats won by political parties


Andaman and Nicobar Island (1)

BJP (1)


Andhra Pradesh (25)

TDP (16)


BJP (3)

Jana Sena Party (2)


Arunachal Pradesh (2)

BJP (2)


Assam (14)

BJP (9)

INC (3)

UPPL (1)

AGP (1)


Bihar (40)

JD(U) (12)

BJP (12)


RJD (4)

INC (3)

CPI (ML) (L) (2)

HAMS (1)

Independent (1)


Chandigarh (1)

INC (1)


Chhattisgarh (11)

BJP (10)

INC (1)


Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu (2)

BJP (1)

Independent (1)


Goa (2)

BJP (1)

INC (1)


Gujarat (26)

BJP (25)

INC (1)


Haryana (10)

BJP (5)

INC (5)


Himachal Pradesh (4)

BJP (4)


Jammu and Kashmir (5)

JKN (2)

BJP (2)

INC (1)


Jharkhand (14)

BJP (8)

JMM (3)

INC (2)



Karnataka (28)

BJP (17)

INC (9)

JD(S) (2)


Kerala (20)

INC (14)

IUML (2)

CPI (M) (1)

BJP (1)

KEC (1)

RSP (1)


Ladakh (1)

Independent (1)


Lakshadweep (1)

INC (1)


Madhya Pradesh (29)

BJP (29)


Maharashtra (48)

INC (13)

BJP (10)



SHS (7)

NCP (1)

Independent (1)


Manipur (2)

INC (2)


Meghalaya (2)


INC (1)


Mizoram (1)

ZPM (1)


Nagaland ()

INC (1)


NCT of Delhi (7)

BJP (7)


Odisha (21)

BJP (20)

INC (1)


Puducherry (1)

INC (1)


Punjab (13)

INC (7)

AAAP (3)

SAD (1)

Independent (2)


Rajasthan (25)

BJP (14)

INC (8)

CPI (M) (1)

RLTP (1)



Sikkim (1)

Independent (1)


Tamil Nadu (39)

DMK (22)

INC (9)

VCK (2)

CPI (2)

CPI (M) (2)

MDMK (1)

IUML (1)


Telangana (17)

BJP (8)

INC (8)



Tripura (2)

BJP (2)


Uttar Pradesh (80)

SP (37)

BJP (33)

INC (6)

RLD (2)


ADAL (1)


Uttarakhand (5)

BJP (5)


West Bengal (42)

AITC (29)

BJP (12)

INC (1)

Data Source: Election Commission of India (ECI)

The other states/union territories where the BJP won majority seats are Uttarakhand, Tripura, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.  

The BJP also received a landslide victory in Odisha in the Lok Sabha election and the assembly elections in 2024. In the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) emerged victorious, winning 12 seats in the state out of 21 constituencies. However, in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP won 20 seats, with only one seat going to the INC and nil for the BJD. The BJP’s victory in Odisha represents a seismic shift in power dynamics, ending a 24-year reign under BJD chief Naveen Patnaik.

In March this year, India’s Election Commission (ECI) announced the dates of India’s general elections, starting from April 19 to June 1, with a seven-phase voting timetable. During this time, the ECI simultaneously held elections for the legislative assemblies of multiple states—Sikkim, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, and Arunachal Pradesh. The results to these state assembly elections were also announced on June 4.

The BJP, in a huge leap, won 78 of the 147 seats in the Odisha legislative assembly elections. The voting for the 147-member assembly was held in four phases:

  • Phase 1: May 13 (for 28 seats)
  • Phase 2: May 20 (for 35 seats)
  • May 25 (for 42 seats)
  • June 1 (42 seats)

Modi-led NDA front has very high goals for economic expansion, extensive reforms, and infrastructural development. Nevertheless, the NDA will work more cautiously on its key pre-election promises and other social reforms given that the front is now compelled to collaborate with coalition partners like the TDP and JD (S). – Rohit Kapur, Managing Director, Dezan Shira and Associates India

The NDA block is awaiting the decisions of two key political parties for support, namely, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), led by Chandrababu Naidu in Andhra Pradesh, and the Janata Dal(United) or JD(U), led by Nitish Kumar in Bihar, to join the ruling majority. Cementing an alliance with the two parties will help the BJP gain a better foothold in Bihar and Andhra Pradesh.

Unexpected setbacks for the NDA

The BJP has experienced an overall setback in the following states:

  1. Uttar Pradesh: -29 seats
  2. Maharashtra: -13
  3. Rajasthan: -10
  4. Karnataka: -8
  5. West Bengal: -6
  6. Bihar: -5
  7. Gujarat: -1

In the state of Tamil Nadu, the NDA did not manage to gain any constituency victories. The incumbent Tamil Nadu ruling party, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), won 22 seats out of a total of 39 constituencies. In its neighboring state of Telangana, the BJP, INC, and AIMIM won 8, 8, and 1 seat, respectively. Tamil Nadu is among the leading states in India for manufacturing and electronics exports. 

Further, unexpected electoral outcomes in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh and western state of Maharashtra, believed to be BJP bastions, favored the opposition political front, the INDIA bloc, led by the INC. 


The Uttar Pradesh story – a comeback of the Samajwadi Party

Losing a significant share of votes in Uttar Pradesh can be attributed as a reason for the BJP’s shortfall of gaining a comfortable majority victory. In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP unilaterally won 62 seats of the 64 secured by the NDA alliance. The opposition parties, such as Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), INC, and Samajwadi Party (SP) won 10, 1, and 5 seats, respectively.

In the 2024 elections, the SP, a political ally of the opposition block, INDIA, emerged as the single largest party with 37 seats, whereas the NDA bloc was able to obtain 36 seats. In total, there are 43 seats held by the INDIA alliance in the state. NDA ally parties such as Apna Dal (ADAL) and Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) also partially lost their foothold in Uttar Pradesh, thereby weakening the NDA’s position in the state. Uttar Pradesh is always an electoral prize as the large and highly populated North Indian state enjoys the biggest seat share in parliament. 

Alliance talks

After a decade since Narendra Modi first became PM, the BJP will be forming a national government through a coalition. In 2014, the BJP party won 282 seats and, in the next elections, secured an overwhelming majority of 303 seats. In India, any political party or coalition must have a minimum mandate of 272 seats out of 543 in the Lok Sabha to claim a stake. 

At present, the NDA has secured an alliance with Chandrababu Naidu’s TDP and Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) to seal the deal and form a government at the national level.

Some of the NDA star performers, such as former Union Minister of Textile Smriti Irani, former Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar, and former Chief Minister of Jharkhand Arjun Munda, lost from their constituencies.

India’s economic stability likely to remain unaffected

Experts predict that the NDA block will require more time and planning to form the ministerial cabinet, with new entrants expected to take up key portfolios. This may also result in the BJP’s first 100-day implementation plan of action taking a backseat. 

Also of keen interest will be the announcement of the new federal (union) budget for FY 2024-25 and whether it will introduce any provisions impacting taxpayers and businesses; the interim budget was announced in February and did not make any significant policy changes.

As per India’s parliamentary procedures, a new government assuming power after a Lok Sabha election will propose a renewed financial budget to outline the economic roadmap for the ongoing financial year. India’s finance budget is expected to be announced within the next 3-4 weeks.

The resurgence of regional parties in the Lok Sabha once again brings the spotlight on the relationship dynamics between national and state-level political stakeholders within India’s federal makeup.   

Melissa Cyrill, Deputy Managing Editor at Asia Briefing, asserts that despite the unexpected electoral outcome, it is unlikely to significantly impact the country’s economic reforms or policy implementation.

India just successfully conducted its 18th general elections, with outcomes delivering an interesting verdict on the performance of the incumbent Narendra Modi government. State-wise results showed that voters distinguished between federal ambitions and local grievances. For the first time in 10 years, the BJP lost some ground to the INC in direct elections for the Lok Sabha; other losses were to the Trinamool Congress (TMC) in West Bengal and the SP in U.P. Unexpected losses reflected regional economic aspirations and frustrations. As the largest party, the BJP, was unable to secure the majority on its own like in 2019 and 2014. This time, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be heading a government with his coalition partners, the TDP and JD(U), playing key roles; Modi has surprisingly never managed a coalition government before – both as chief minister of Gujarat for multiple terms and as prime minister. Coalition governments were prominent in the Indian political landscape till the last decade; their success depends on the understanding and chemistry between key political partners. Nevertheless, India is still expected to be on the industrial development and investment reform path, though the pace of key social and other policy implementation may face delays. – Melissa Cyrill, Editorial Board, Asia Briefing


The BJP has gained the largest seat share in the 18th Lok Sabha elections, but its overall performance has been underwhelming when compared to previous elections and its target of 400-seats. It will, however, form the national government with its coalition partners in the NDA – the TDP and JD(U).

All eyes will be on who is appointed to key ministerial positions as allies jostle for influence in the new government. Industry stakeholders, taxpayers, and businesses also keenly await the announcement of the final union budget for the ongoing fiscal year, which is expected to be unveiled by the end of June or the beginning of July.

In the approaching monsoon session of parliament, the Narendra Modi-led administration could exercise caution since passing any legislation or making policy decisions will be subject to intense debate and scrutiny from opposition parties and even coalition partners.

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