Indian Politics under Modi

Hindu nationalism is politically dominant today. Not long ago, historians considered it backward or out-of-date, while political scientists did not think it worth their while to discuss its prospects of coming to power. But through the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP, or Indian People’s Party), Hindu nationalism has reinvented itself as populist, asserting religious identity together with the rhetoric of lower caste empowerment. The BJP in fact represents a makeover of the Indian political elite, which has abandoned non-alignment, embraced global capitalism, and seeks close ties with the US. Ironically, this was the desired end of an old Cold War era strategy of the US, which saw India as a frontline state in the battle against Communist threat. This dossier analyzes the Modi regime’s recent ascent to power.

Indian Democracy and Hindu Populism: The Modi Regime

Arvind Rajagopal

  India’s strong man Narendra Modi embraces President Barak Obama. The photograph was taken during President Obama’s second visit to India, in January 2015. Obama has made two visits to India, more than any other US president in office. Source: […]

Modi Will Be Put to the Test

Partha Chatterjee

  Above, a volunteer for the Election Commission carrying Electronic Voting Machines calls for directions to a polling centre that he was to help set up and man in Hajipur, Bihar as it goes to polls in the second to […]

Regional parties are dead? Long live the regional parties!

Louise Tillin

  After casting his vote quite early in the day, Yangala Chittiah (pictured above), a resident of Pydipalli in West Godavari, Andhra Pradesh, spent the afternoon waving at voters heading to the polling station dressed as former chief minister YS […]

Modi's Media

Nalin Mehta

  Indian resident Maqbool Alam Siddiqui watches a bank of televisions featuring images of Narendra Modi taking his oath as India’s Prime Minister in New Delhi at a multi brand electronic showroom in Mumbai on on May 26, 2014. New […]

The Majority of Democracy

Shruti Kapila

  Engulfed in a momentary dust storm induced by Bharatiya Janta Party candidate Narendra Modi’s helicopter as he departs from a public meeting in Robertsganj, Benaras (Varanasi), members of the crowd attempt to cover their faces and eyes as dry […]