Bow my head in obeisance to this Hindu holy land says Indian PM candidate Modi

4.41 pm: Anandiben Patel to be next Gujarat CM

Sources have confirmed to CNN-IBN that Anandiben Patel will indeed be the next chief minister of Gujarat.

She will be the first woman chief minister of the state.

4.34 pm: Ramdev contributed to BJP win, says Meenakshi Lekhi

Meanwhile, in New Delhi BJP spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi has credited yoga guru Ramdev’s contribution for BJP’s landslide victory in the Lok Sabha Elections 2014.

“Baba Ramdev also contributed to the win like everyone else,” ANI quoted Lekhi as saying.

4.30 pm: Stalin decides not to quit after Karunanidhi’s advice

Stalin, Karunanidhi’s son, who had offered to resign from all the party posts after DMK’s loss in Tamil Nadu has decided not to quit.

Stalin withdrew his resignation after his father asked him not to resign, reports CNN-IBN.

3.35 pm: DMK cadre protest outside Stalin’s house, ask him not to quit

A large number of DMK cadre gathered in front of Stalin’s house in Chennai today in protest.

CNN-IBN reported that the DMK workers wanted Stalin to rethink his decision on quitting party posts.

1.50 pm: No ‘Modi’ wave in Tamil Nadu, yet Stalin offers to quit all DMK posts

Like the ‘Modi wave’ elsewhere, a ‘Jaya wave’ brewing in Tamil Nadu might have claimed its first victim – DMK chief Karunanidhi’s son MK Stalin, no less. While Jayalalithaa’s AIADMK has got 37 seats, DMK couldn’t get even one seat in Tamil Nadu.

CNN IBN reports suggest that a dejected Stalin has offered to resign from all posts that he holds in the party. Stalin’s announcement comes close on the heels of Nitish Kumar’s resignation from the JD(U) chief’s post.

It is not clear whether the party is going to accept Stalin’s resignation yet.

End of updates from 17 May

8.00 pm: Modi begins his thanksgiving address in Varanasi

Soon after the Ganga Aarti concluded, PM designate Narendra Modi began his address from the dais built on the banks of the river Ganga at the Dasaswamedh Ghat.

“I was not given a chance to ask for votes from you in Varanasi. They had gagged me. Despite that gag order the people of Varanasi voted for me and made me the winner,” Modi said amid loud cheers.

“You have voted a man to power who could not even devote 60 minutes to you. Today I bow my head in obeisance to this holy land and to the people who live in this holy city for this kindness,” he said.

“On the day I filed my nomination from Varanasi I was not a mere candidate but became a son of the soil from Varanasi. Today I experienced even more warmth from you people,” the PM designate said.

“All those pictures and banners hanging on the windows and streets cannot make me your own. This was made possible by Ma Ganga. With the blessings of Ma Ganga, I hope to do my work well. Even Ma Ganga is calling one of its sons to relieve it of the dirt that has plagued the river,” Modi said.

“Today I am present among you people to to do something for you. I intend to put Varanasi on the global map as one of the world’s top spiritual destinations,” he said.

Modi invokes the Mahatma to vouch for cleanliness. The PM designate has soon realised that unless he gets support from the residents of Varanasi, his mission to clean Ganga won’t be a success.

“Take a pledge that from today that you would keep the city of Kashi clean. We are all servants of Kashi. It is our responsibility to keep it clean,” he said.

Taunting the Congress, Modi said, “It is for the first time that coalition may have to be formed to form an opposition, so hard was the slap by the people of the country.”

7.05 pm: Sanskrit chants are there, so are the “Har har Modi” chants

7.00 pm: Modi starts Ganga Aarti at Dasaswamedh Ghat

As soon as PM designate Narendra Modi accompanied by BJP chief Rajnath Singh and Amit Shah reached the Dasaswamedh Ghat to perform the Ganga Aarti, Sanskrit hymns took over making the atmosphere a very holy one.

In between the chants and deafening sound of the conch shells blown with full lung power, an enthusiastic crowd of BJP supporters have filled the air with the “Har, har Modi” slogan as well. Despite the tight arrangements, the

security personnel are having a tough time to control the over zealous BJP cadres who want to get as close as they to the country’s next prime minister. The cheer and the chaos going on together right on the banks of the Ganga in Varanasi are unmissable.

Ironically, before the polls a few days back Modi was denied permission by the Varanasi district administration to conduct the Ganga Aarti on security grounds.

Hindu priests perform  Aarti on the banks of the Ganges river in Varanasi on 11 May 2014. AFP

Hindu priests perform Aarti on the banks of the Ganges river in Varanasi on 11 May 2014.

Hindu priests perform Aarti on the banks of the Ganges river in Varanasi on 11 May 2014. AFP

6.30 pm: Modi on way to Dasaswamedh Ghat for Ganga Aarti

After the conclusion of Rudra Abhishek puja at the Kashi Vishwanath Temple, PM designate Narendra Modi flanked by BJP chief Rajnath Singh and Amit Shah is now heading to the Dasaswamedh Ghat to perform the Ganga Aarti.

This aarti was also performed by former prime minister Manmohan Singh few years back.

Heavy security is in place on the banks of the Ganga as the Special Protection Group has taken over the security of the PM designate.

National Security

 Guard commandos, personnel from the Gujarat and Uttar PradeshPolice along with personnel from the Border Security Force and Rapid Action Force are also entrusted with the security responsibility.

In preparation for the Aarti, shops in the vicinity of the venue were asked to close down around 2 pm and apart from two boats the others were asked to move away. One of the boats is carrying security personnel and othervideo journalists from different media houses.

Thousands of people along with local BJP cadres have thronged the venue making the atmosphere euphoric with everyone hoping that their new MP will change the face of Varanasi.

6.10 pm: Sushil Kumar Modi taunts Nitish again on Twitter

“Nkumar has a history of resigning amp; again joining the same govt .After Gaisal rail accident in 1999 he resigned amp; again joined after sometim”-the former Bihar deputy chief minister tweeted.

5.55 pm: Modi, Rajnath, Amit Shah offer prayers at Kashi Vishwanath Temple

PM designate Narendra Modi along with BJP president Rajnath Singh and Amit Shah are currently offering their prayers at the Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Varanasi. The Kashi Vishwanath Temple has one of the twelve Jyotirlingas and is considered to be the holiest of Shiva temples.

5.00 pm: Decision on BJP not strategic but ideological: Nitish Kumar

Addressing the media after tendering his resignation to the governor, former Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar said that the current mandate does not allow him to continue in office.

“I was leading the poll process for my party in Bihar. Whatever results have come yesterday, I take full responsibility and I should also take it morally,” Kumar told at a press conference in Patna.

“This election was more about making personal comments and less about issues. I have never seen such a poll campaigning before. We went to the people talking about development issues. But it is obvious that the people rejected us. In view of that I and my entire cabinet have tendered our resignation,” the JDU leader said taking an indirect dig at PM-elect Narendra Modi.

Continuing with his veiled attack on the PM-elect, he said, “We will go into details of our failure later. But our initial response is that no polls earlier saw this kind of communal divisiveness in the state. A communal trend was out in the open. Now we hope that all dreams shown to the youths will be fulfilled by the BJP. We hope that good days are here and good days will stay. The BJP has got its mandate and hope it will keep its promises.”

Clarifying that the no request for dissolution of the Assembly was given, the former chief minister said, “I have not recommended dissolution of the Assembly. The path is open for an alternative government to take oath. Our MLAs will meet tomorrow at 4 pm and discuss future course of the action. I have taken my decision by consulting my party chief and senior leaders of my party. There is no problem of majority. This decision was taken at a personal and moral level.”

Not showing any repent for his decision to move away from the BJP, Kumar said, “The decision to snap ties with the BJP was not a strategic one but taken on the basis of

the ideology. This was not for votes but taken on the basis of ideological difference. This decision has not affected the results of the polls. Even the nature of campaign made it clear that we took a right decision to separate from the BJP. But I have my best wishes for the new prime minister as he is going to take charge after getting the mandate of the people.”

5.00 pm: This was an expected decision: KC Tyagi

“This was an expected decision. We thought that we need to seek a new mandate from the people. This was decided just after the announcement of the results,” Tyagi told CNN-IBN.

4.40 pm: Think Nitish took decision not under BJP pressure: RJD

Talking to CNN-IBN RJD leader Ali Ashraf Fatmi said that Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar must have resigned taking moral responsibility of the debacle in the Lok Sabha polls and not bowing to any pressure from the BJP.

“He has majority in the Bihar state Assembly. There is no reason for him otherwise to quit other than taken moral responsibility of the defeat,” Fatmi said.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Image courtesy PIB

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Image courtesy PIB

4.12 pm: Nitish Kumar quits as Bihar chief minister

Following the electoral debacle, JDU leader and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today tendered his resignation to the state governor. As per CNN-IBN reports, Kumar has requested the governor to dissolve the state assembly as well.

Rebel JDU MLA Gyanendra Singh told CNN-IBN that the decision to part with the BJP was taken at a very time by Kumar.

“Had that decision been not taken then today JDU would have won 40 seats and Nitish Kumar himself would have become the most powerful chief minister. After the split we should have won 15-16 seats. But victory in two seats merely shocked us. All MLAs felt that Kumar took a wrong decision and the right time of the split was actually before the Assembly polls,” Singh said from Patna.

“Earlier Nitish Kumar was seen as a poster boy of development in Bihar. But after the snapping of ties changed everything,” said senior


 Paranjoy Guha Thakurta.

“This was a very poor performance by the JDU. But prior to that the state government was already a minority one. In these circumstances, Nitish Kumar had taken the right decision. There was already a dissent going on within the party,” former JDU leader Devesh Chandra Thakur told CNN-IBN.

“The situation merits the decision he has taken. The dismal performance by the party in the Lok Sabha prompted that decision. Any intelligent and far-sighted leader like Nitish Kumar would have taken the decision,” Thakur said.

BJP MP Kirti Azad welcomed the decision by the chief minister.

“Bihar was in a sorry state and the chief minister had become dictatorial. Bihar needs a special package and the Modi government at the Centre may help the state. Around 52 MLAs of the JDU are already in touch with the BJP for the last seven to eight months,” Azad said. “Nitish Kumar is an honest man but he cannot be autocratic,” he said.

3.45 pm: Planning Commission chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia quits

3.10 pm: Ramvilas Paswan thanks Bihar and Narendra Modi

Ramvilas Paswan’s LJP, which won 6 seats in Bihar, profusely thanked the people of Bihar and then congratulated Narendra Modi on his win. The BJP did fabulously in Bihar, reducing the JD(U) to single digits in the state. Then, he took two not-so-subtle digs at Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad Yadav. “The people of Bihar has taught a great lesson to two people – one who wanted to become a PM, and one who wanted to make a a PM,” he said.

2.15 pm: BJP Parliamentary Board meeting ends

After a remarkably short Parliamentary Board meeting, the BJP leaders turned up in full force to address the press conference

“BJP hails people’s verdict. The people of India have spoken and have spoken decisively. For the fisrt time in the history of India, a non Congress party has secured such an overwhelming majority. India needs a government that can put the country back on the economic growth track and we will put in our best efforts to do that,” Rajnath Singh announced.

He added that Narendra Modi will be elected the Prime Minister designate of the party on 20 May. He also said that the date of oath-taking has not been decided.

Narendra Modi, who had been relentlessly caustic about the mainstream media’s loyalties during his campaigning, embarked on a


 u-turn since yesterday. In his victory speech he had thanked the ‘impartial media’. In today’s meet he thanked the media for playing a significant role in increasing voter awareness.

“I extend my heartfelt gratitude to the media for helping increase voter awareness. I know, I have not been able to talk to several of you personally. But you are one of my own, so we will keep meeting,” he said in his short address.

Rajnath Singh also added that Modi will take questions from the media after he has taken oath as the PM.

12.55 pm: RSS has no strings to pull in BJP’s new government?

Amit Shah, during an interview to NDTV, commented that the government intends to work constructively with the Opposition for the development of the country.

On Arun Jaitley’s defeat, he said, that the leader’s role in the party’s decision making will not diminish because of his loss. “Arun Jaitley is a very senior leader in BJP. A small defeat doesn’t affect his position,” Shah added.

Finally, he decided to bat away the RSS question with gusto. Barkha Dutt pointed out that there have been reports of brisk meeting within the RSS after BJP’s win and asked if the RSS will have any role to play in the government, Modi said, “This is not the first time the NDA will run a government. It has been in power in the past too. And like in the past, the BJP will take its own decisions.”

However, he refused to spell out that RSS will not be involved by naming the outfit in the interview.

12.49 pm: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh reaches Rashtrapati Bhavan, submits resignation

Meanwhile, Manmohan Singh, has reached the Rashtrapati Bhavan to meet President Pranab Mukherjee and submit his resignation. This is part of the procedures involved in the change of government.

12.52 pm: Mayawati addresses press conference after drubbing in Lok Sabha polls

Despite not winning a single seat in the Lok Sabha elections, BSP chief Mayawati today said that she was pleased with the result because the party had received more votes than the last election.

“Our Dalit voters have stuck with the BSP throughout. This is why the party finished second in 34 seats,” she said. “I would like to heartily thank the Dalit voters who stopped the movement from sliding behind,” she said.

She said that the party was unable to win in this election because of a division in votes among the upper caste and the Muslim community.”We have received more votes this time than even in 2009,” she said.

The party did get a four percent vote share in this election but then there’s nothing quite like having a seat in the Lok Sabha.

12.44 pm: BJP’s Parliamentary Board meeting begins in Delhi

After addressing workers and fans, BJP PM nominee Narendra Modi began a meeting with senior leaders. The Parliamentary Board meet sees participation from LK Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Sushma Swaraj etc.

PM-elect Narendra Modi (L) embraces BJP senior leader Lal Krishna Advani ahead of a meeting at party headquarters in New Delhi on 17 May 2014. AFP

PM-elect Narendra Modi (L) embraces BJP senior leader Lal Krishna Advani ahead of a meeting at party headquarters in New Delhi on 17 May 2014.

PM-elect Narendra Modi (L) embraces BJP senior leader Lal Krishna Advani ahead of a meeting at party headquarters in New Delhi on 17 May 2014. AFP

Prior to the meeting, visuals showed Advani embracing Modi and handing him a bouquet of flowers. Signs of a new friendship? Or it is just Advani mending bridges to ascertain he has a role to play in the BJP in future.

2.18 pm: Modi channels Kejriwal in Delhi, in first post-victory speech in city

Modi profusely thanked his supporters and voters in his speech, after he reached the BJP headquarters. “I am extremely grateful to you for your love and encouragement. This win is not Modi’s win, this win is the victory of thousands of BJP workers,” he said.

Here, one can’t help remember Arvind Kejriwal, who, during his oath-taking speech, said, “This victory is not Arvind Kejriwal’s victory. It is the victory of the people.”

He then went on to thank the country, saying that this overwhelming victory was for all those who prayed for the well-being of the nation since 1952.

“The millions of Indians who voted for BJP, has the first right to this victory,” he said.

He then added that the win is also a tribute to a several BJP workers who had died in clashes, died fighting for the party in the past.

12.15 pm: Early Diwali for Delhi as Modi reaches BJP headquarters

The BJP’s headquarters on 11 Ashoka Road, TV visuals show, wears a jubilant, festive look. Orange and green balloons adorn walls and ceilings, hundreds of people have managed to squeeze into the premises.

Modi enters the building, unfazed by the swelling crowds, by the hundreds of supporters trying to click pictures of him, shake hands with him and get a close glimpse of their leader. Looking alternatively sombre and happy, Modi negotiate the crowd with a little help from his


 personnel, Rajnath Singh and Nitin Gadkari.

A shower of rose petals greet him as he crosses the gates of the party office as flash bulbs, phone cameras and an odd iPad goes crazy trying to snap him.

11.36 am: Sonia, Rahul to offer to resign on Monday, say reports

Fresh reports coming in say that Congress president Sonia Gandhi and vice president Rahul Gandhi may offer to resign from the party, as part of a move to take responsibility for the pathetic performance of the party in the Lok Sabha elections, where they got only 44 seats.

NDTV quoted Congress party sources as saying that the two were likely to make the offer at a meeting of the Congress Working Committee on Monday. However the channel added that the move was likely to be “largely symbolic as party leaders are unlikely to accept it”.

“Sources say emotional speeches will set the tone for deep introspection on the Congress’ spectacular rout. India’s oldest party was reduced to double digits in Parliament and failed to win a single seat in 10 states, as a long and grueling campaign by Rahul Gandhi failed to stop the tide of public anger”, the NDTV website added.

Meanwhile Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s last cabinet meeting has just got underway. He is expected to offer his resignation to the President shortly.

11.25 am: Modi’s route to BJP HQ thronged with cheering supporters

The next Prime Minister of the country is being cheered ever inch of the 14 kilometres between the Indira Gandhi International airport and the BJP headquarters at Ashoka Road, New Delhi.

He is constantly engaging with the crowds, flashing victory signs and waving. And they are simply loving it.

11.00 am: Modi lands in Delhi, flashes Victory sign to crowds

And we have our first glimpse of the BJP Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in the national capital. Hanging out of his car and surrounded by black cat commandos, Modi leant out of his car and flashed a victory sign to the cheering crowds.

His convoy is now proceeding at snails pace as Modi waves to the crowd, which at this point can only be described as massive.

“Today is a day of celebration. Narendra Modi ji will be coming and we are all happy”, said BJP spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad. “After three- four months to a year of hard work we are happy, but we have a sombre realisation of the expectations of the people of India on us”, he said.

10.49 am: Modi lands in Delhi, set for huge road show

The crowds are thronging to Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International airport to receive Narendra Modi who has landed in the national capital. He will be received by BJP President Rajnath Singh and other senior BJP leaders.

He will be driven to the BJP headquarters amid the beating of drums, cheering of crowds and a calvacade of buses and tempos. Reporters in the national capital say that the Delhi police are quite stretched at the moment.

Modi’s security has been stepped up considerably and he is being provided SPG cover, which is an upgrade from the Z plus security cover was entitled to before.

10.03 am: Serving this nation has been my greatest privilege, says emotional PM

In his final address to the nation, a tired looking Manmohan Singh said he respected the decision of the people, who returned a stunning mandate in favour of the Modi-led BJP. “my dear countrymen, we accept your verdict with humility”, he said.

Speaking off a teleprompter, the Prime Minister made an emotional speech, saying that serving this nation had been his greatest privilege.

“I owe this nation everything. For an underprivileged child of partion, I owe it to this country that I reached the highest office. It is a debt I will never be able to

repay”, he said.

“Your love for me will stay with me even after I am no longer Prime Minister”.

Speaking about his tenure, the PM said that the last ten years had seen many successes and achivements that India needed to be proud of. “Today India is a far stronger country in every respect than it was ten years to go. India has vast latent development potential and we must collectively work hard to realise it”

He added that he was also confident about the future of India.

“India as an emerging global powerhouse is an idea whose time has come”, he said, adding that he wished the incoming government well and would pray for India’s continued success.

9.53 am:PM to make final speech as Modi heads to Delhi

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is about to make his final speech as the leader of the nation. He is the second Prime Minister after Jawaharlal Nehru to serve two full consecutive terms.

A few days ago, a profile on the Prime Minister said that he was also sorting through the hundreds of books that were gifted to him – deciding on the ones he wants to keep and take with him to his sprawling 2.5-acreretirement home – 3, Moti Lal Nehru Marg.

A PMO official told IANS that there is a pile of files waiting at his table every morning at his official 7, Race Course Road residence. “He is still clearing about 30-35 files every day. At least 10 to 12 people call on him daily,” the official said. “He is pretty relaxed these days,” the official added.

The prime minister has never gone on a holiday. Even on foreign tours, he has never stayed on for an extra day beyond his diplomatic call.

After retirement would he be going on a long-deserved holiday? “He has no holiday plans. He has indicated he needs time for himself,” an aide told IANS.

9.00 am:Triumphant Modi leaves for Delhi

Prime Minister designate Narendra Modi has left Gandhinagar for Delhi, where he will participate in a massive road show.

Huge crowds are expected to turn out to cheer for their hero, who led the BJP to an emphatic triumph over the Congress, reducing the party to a mere 44 seats in Parliament.

The latest numbers showed the BJP had won 282 seats on its own, with the NDA at 333 seats. The UPA as a whole has only 66 seats.

Once he reaches The BJP HQ, Modi will participate in a Parliamentary board committee meeting where he is expected to be declared the leader of the party. This will then pave the way for him to be named Prime Minister of India.

7:30 am: Modi to head to Delhi today

The new Prime Minister is heading to Delhi today and you can expect a sea of colour to greet him when he arrives from Gujarat.

The party will also possibly be sitting down today to decide Modi’s successor in the state of Gujarat, with speculation that it would be Anandiben.

CNN-IBN said the Congress party seems to have taken the day off and the party headquarters wears an empty look after the worst decimation in its political history.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will also be tendering his resignation to the president today.

7:00 pm: Here’s the final tally as it stands

The Election Commission hasn’t called 22 seats in Andhra Pradesh just yet and has some other seats also that are still to be declared.

The Telugu Desam Party is leading 11 seats, Telangana Rashtra Samiti is leading in 5 seats, YSR Congress is leading in six seats.

The BJP is leading in four of these seats and the Congress in one

This is what the final tally looks like presently:

BJP – 282 (NDA – 333)

Congress – 44 (UPA- 60)


TMC – 34

BJD – 20

1:00 am: Modi gets an invite to the US

He may not have applied for a visa to go to the US just yet but has already got an invite from the US President who has asked him to drop in.

President Barack Obama tonightcongratulated Narendra Modi for his electoral victory during atelephone call and invited him to visit the US at a mutuallyagreeable time to further strengthen the bilateral ties.

“The President invited Narendra Modi to visit Washingtonat a mutually agreeable time to further strengthen ourbilateral relationship,” the White House said following themaiden telephonic conversation between the two leaders.

The phone call was stated to be brief.Modi, during his US visit would be eligible for an A-1visa, State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki said.

“The Prime Minister of India will be welcomed to theUnited States. As Head of Government, Modi would be eligiblefor an A-1 visa,” she said.

In 2005, the US State Department had revoked a visa thatModi had for travelling to the US on the ground of allegedhuman rights violations after the 2002 Gujarat riots.

End of updates for 16 May

9.28 pm: Modi live again!

Lots of rallies before winning and lots of rallies after winning. That seems to be the mantra. Earlier in the day, it was Vadodara, this time in Ahmedabad. Modi chants renting the air.

“From the time, I have been in politics, your love has kept me going. All Gujratis have all right on me, but you have now shared that right with the people of India.”

“It’s the first poll in my political life when I didn’t have political sabha in Ahmedabad.”

“I will never let down the faith you have shown in the BJP, the words of our workers and me. The rivals were busy mudslinging but the people of India have said that the answer to their problems is ‘vaikaas’.”

“Todne ki rajneeti ka yug samapt ho chuka hai, aaj se jodne ki rajneeti ka yug shuru. (The era of divisive politics is over, it is all about getting people together now.)”

“Those who criticised me didn’t know Modi is such a magician who also made them speak on important agendas. But all these discussions also told the country that only development can save the country. Even if they spoke about Gujarat negatively, they still spoke about development. There is only one medicine to all problems — development.”

“Anti-establishment is possible when there is an establishment. But in the last five years did you feel there was an establishment. There was just a vacuum. This was the election of hope. This election with strengthen India’s democracy. Gujarat taught me to walk in politics, you have seen me grow. You have sent me to the Centre and if something goes wrong, think it is I who didn’t learn well.”

8.24 pm: Rahul Gandhi has won in Amethi

Maybe this is why Rahul Gandhi was smiling. He has managed to hold on to Amethi by a margin of 1.07 lakh votes.

Meanwhile, in Gandhinagar, L.K.ADVANI of BJP wins by a margin of 483121 votes

8.11 pm: Victory for the people of Odisha: Naveen Patnaik

Naveen Patnaik: This is a victory for the people of Odisha. Our policy has been one of being equi-distant but we will also try and work closely with the Centre. I hope the Centre Government responds positively to the needsof the nation. We can certainly co-operate as far as the state’s demands are concerned. There has been no discussion on a federal front yet.

8.06 pm: There is not reason for Rahul, Sonia to resign: Scindia

Jyotiraditya Scindia told CNN-IBN: There is no reason for Rahul, Sonia to resign. We will have to look at where we went wrong.

7.26 pm: BJP win makes up for my defeat: Jaitley

Local issues went against us. Too early for me to comment. But BJP win makes up for my defeat. I have been so involved in national campaign that every inch of this victory is delightful to me,” Arun Jaitley told NDTV. He lost to Cong’s Amarinder Singh from Amrtisar. “We have moved beyond our strong states. There was hope in Modi-led BJP. It was the hope that made this wave stronger.”

“In a country as diverse as India you have to take everyone along. Since we have an absolute majority, providing stable government is possible.”

6.41 pm: “Itold myself that if I speak it will only be at Vadodara”

Narendra Modi is addressing the crowd in Vadodara after BJP’s landslide victory.

“Everyone wanted me to speak since morning but i told myself that if I speak it will only be at Vadodara. Vadodara has the first right. You tell me… how are you feeling?

“Acche dinn,” says Modi… Crowd responds… “Aayenge.”

This is like a concert. The crowd is going wild.

“I am here today to greet and thank you. At a personal level, as a candidate, two important things happened… I could give Vadodara only 50 minutes after announcing my candidature. And you gave me 5 lakh 17 thousand votes.”

Chants of Modi break out.

“I bow my head to the love shown by the public in Vadodara. Each voter became Narendra Modi. You


 a very big responsibility.”

“I didn’t get to speak in Varanasi but their stamp of approval was the other big thing. My brothers and sisters in Vadodara, do you know you have established a new record for the first time in 60 years. I haven’t told anyone in the media either. My margin of victory in Vadodara is the most ever in a General Elections. I thank the EC, the people, the ‘impartial’ NGOs and the ‘impartial’ media.”

Chants of Modi break out again.

“Democracy, voters, voting responsibility… everyone in Vadodara… the awakening of the voters was very important and I thank and congratulate them.”

There were some people in the crowd who were unable to hear Modi properly. Modi pauses, asks them to move a little closer: “No matter where Modi is, he knows about your problems,” says Modi. Crowd cheers again.

“When they would speak earlier, they would make fun of me. But if we had got 25 out of 26 also, I would have got a beating. But I thank Gujarat for the clean sweep. I was told, in Gujarat, almost 60 % people voted for BJP, That is a new ‘misaal’ in India.”

“After independence most governments were formed by Cong. And the few times BJP came to power, it was a coalition. But this is the first time that we have won purely on our own — with a national agenda based on governance. After this election, most of the PM’s were people who weren’t born in independent India but this is the first election in which the leadership of the parties (Congress and BJP) was in the hands of people born in independent India.”

“We did not get the


 to die, go to jail, or fight for the country’s independence.But I am fortunate of have gotten the opportunity to live for good governance in independent India. I trust people of India, they trust me. It is the power of trust that will work for this country,” says Modi.

“India’s verdict says that they want the country to move forward. The NDA has hit a triple century but the Government doesn’t belong to a party, but the people of the country.”

“In the future, India won’t get a worker like me. Every part of my body, every second of my time is dedicated to the people of the country. Sabka saath, sabka vikaas, yehi humara mantra hai. No apna, no paraya for me.”

“There is no enmity in democracy but there is competition and that is the beauty of democracy. We will take our opponents along with us.”

Modi ends his speech with his signature ‘vande mataram.’ Then some Marathi, followed by Gujarati. Finally, he bids goodbye. Now, onto to Delhi.

5.45 pm: Vadodara in party mode, drunk on Modi triumph

Vadodara is in party mode. People are practically hanging off balconies and crowding the streets in anticipation of their hero speaking. Modi arrived in the city a short while ago and is expected to address the throngs soon Yashpal Taparia/VadodaraYashpal Taparia/Vadodara5.04 pm: World leaders rush to congratulate Modi

Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif has congratulated Modi.He was among a bevy of world leaders who rushed to congratulate the BJP Prime Ministerial candidate. He had called him personally and invited him to visit Pakistan.

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa also called the BJP Prime Ministerial candidate and told him to visit the country soon.

British Prime Minister David Cameron and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot have congratulated Narendra Modi on his party’s victory in the Lok Sabha polls and said he is keen to work together.

“Congratulations @narendramodi on victory in India’s elections. Keen to work together to get the most from UK-India relationship,” tweeted Cameron, who was among the first world leaders to greet Modi.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot also said he looked forward to strengthening ties between India and Australia.

I’ve spoken to @narendramodi and congratulated him on his success. I look forward to strengthening ties between India and Australia

– Tony Abbott (@TonyAbbottMHR) May 16, 2014

Obama has not yet congratulated Modi but earlier he said, “We look forward to the formation of a new government once election results are announced and to working closely with India’s next administration to make the coming years equally transformative”.

Read more at:

In 7 states, Congress did not win even 1 seat, says Amit Shah

BJP general secretary Amit Shah spoke to the media after the win:

“The Modi wave has become a tsunami. In 7 states, Congress did not win even 1 seat. The only two seats Cong won was for the family, same goes for SP.”

“This is a victory for the country and its people. The people moved towards BJP since Modi was announced PM candidate.”

4.30 pm: I hold myself responsible, says Rahul after loss

A short statement from a smiling Rahul Gandhi, who said that the party expected to do better, and added that he took the blame for the Congress party’s defeat. “I would like to congratulate the new government. They have clearly been given a mandate and I wish them all the best”.

And Twitter wonders. Why was he smiling?

Sonia Gandhi on the other hand, made a slightly longer statement, saying that they accepted the mandate of the people, adding that “in these elections the Congress candidates did the best against the opposition but the people have not given us the mandate. We accept that. This is a democracy.

She also accepted responsibility for the defeat, and added, ” We hope that the new government will not compromise on the country’s unity”.

“We will stand by the morals and principles of our party and will never forget these.”

4.18 pm: Kejriwal disappointed with Delhi, happy with Punjab

AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal who lost to Narendra Modi in Varanasi, has said that he was disappointed with the party’s performance in New Delhi but was happy with the result in Punjab.

“We are disappointed with the results in Delhi, could have done better.This battle was never ours, it was of the common man.People never expected that we would do well in Punjab, but we did.There is much churning in this country, the battle is still on, will continue for a long time”, he said.

Meanwhile in West Bengal, the TMC has won 11 of the 14 Lok Sabha seats declared in the state so far.

The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPi-M), the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress shared the remaining three seats.

Among the Trinamool’s winning candidates is former railway minister Dinesh Trivedi, who retained his Barrackpore seat, defeating his nearest rival Subhasini Ali of the CPI-M by a margin of 213,785 votes.



 and Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s grandnephew Sugata Bose was elected from Jadavpur, defeating CPI-M’s Sujan Chakraborty by a margin of 125,440 votes.

Other Trinamool winners include film actors Satabdi Roy (Birbhum) and Tapas Pal (Krishnanagar). Both of them were sitting MPs.

4.05 pm: Sonia Gandhi to address media shortly

Congress President Sonia Gandhi who oversaw the party’s great comeback in 2004, is now faced with the ignominy of presiding over its worst ever defeat.

She will address the media in a short while. Will Rahul take responsibility? Are we set for new changes in the party? And most importantly, what next for Congress?

3.27 pm: Results show that BJP is now a party for everyone, says Rajnath

In a significant message, BJP President Rajnath Singh said that the overwhelming mandate received by the BJP showed that the party was now a party for everyone.

“BJP is now party of slum-dwellers, adivasis, dalits, poor. We got support from everyone. Let us maintain dignity, calm during celebrations. Don’t say anything against any community”, he added.

So the first move of the party president is to try and distance itself from the image of a hardline Hindutva party. This is an interesting and significant step.

3.22 pm: This is a mandate for Modi, says Rajnath Singh

BJP President Rajnath Singh, Venkaiah Naidu and Amit Shah, trusted Modi aide and the architect of the BJP’s stupendous performance in Uttar Pradesh swathed in saffron shawls have fed each other lots of ladoos and have hailed the victory, noting that after 1984, this is the first time that any political party has won clear majority in India.

“This is a people’s mandate for a change. I believe that this mandate is also for Modi”, said Rajnath Singh.

“No other leader has attended so many rallies as Modi did during these elections. Our agenda this election was development, good governance. We got this spectacular victory on the basis of Narendra Modi’s dynamic leadership. The time has come to rewrite the India success story”, he added.

The BJP President also took the time to thank his party workers for the massive win. The latest leads show that the BJP is leading in 283 seats, while Congress is leading in just 46.

2.58 pm: Modi tweets out selfie with his mother

That Modi has wholeheartedly got on to the ‘selfie’ bandwagon is evident. He took one with Chetan Bhagat which he retweeted on the author’s birthday, and then took another after voting in Vadodara.

Now he has taken one with his mother, shortly after calling on her to receive her blessings.

Heeraben seems to be a selfie natural. Just look at the glee on her face

Considering that her son has just won Vadodara with the largest margin in the history of independent India, who can blame her?

Interestingly, the Gujarat BJP had expected the PM candidate to record a bigger victory margin than that set by the CPM’s Anil Basu who stood from the Arambagh constituency in 2004 — 5,92,502 votes more than his closest rival.

Former Modi acolyte and now NDA partner Ram Vilas Paswan also hit the 5,00,000 vote margin once, in 1989 on a Janata Dal ticket.

2.54 pm:Superstar Rajinikanth calls election for Modi

Rajinikanth has congratulated Narendra Modi. So now there’s no going back.

2.44 pm: No provocative slogans, says Rajnath Singh

BJP President Rajnath Singh made a short victory address to BJP workers madly chanting “Modi! Modi!”

“Never before in history has the Congress been defeated by such a margin”, he said to wild cheers. However he then warned against provocation. “Don’t use any provocative slogans, let celebrations be peaceful”.

2.43 pm: Jairam Ramesh finally admits that there was a ‘Modi effect’

“This is worse than we expected. We need to take a look case by case.Clearly there was a Modi effect no doubt about it”, he said. So the Congress has finally admitted that there was a Modi wave.

However Ramesh refused to be entirely doom and gloom.

“The Congress has faced difficult times in the past. It has a vast reservoir of strength. It has workers in every village and every town”, he said.

Meanwhile lt;aharashtra state industries minister Narayan Rane has tendered his resignation to the party leadership over his failure to win them the region of Sindhudurg. The loss also hit close to home in this case, his son Nilesh also seems set to lose in the seat of Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg.

2.30 pm: Rahul Gandhi, Shashi Tharoor move into leads

Some not so bleak news for Congress. After initial scares, party vice president Rahul Gandhi and prominent party leader Shashi Tharoor have moved into the leads in Amethi and Thiruvananthapuram respectively.

Congress President Sonia Gandhi has also won the seat of Rae Bareli.

Cold cold comfort. The party is only leading in 43 seats.

2.12 pm: Modi wins but Jaitley loses

So the latest news coming in from Amritsar is that Jaitley has officially lost to Congress candidate Amarinder Singh. Addressing the media once the result was announced, Singh thanked the voters of Punjab for their support.

No wild celebrations though, given the fact that the party is faring dismally. With leads in only 44 seats, will it even lose the right to lead the opposition in Parliament?

Meanwhile from West Bengal:

One of Congress’ big hopes in Bengal, Deepa Das Munshi, wife of Priya Ranjan Das Munshi lost in an up and down battle in Raiganj says NewsTime.

She was pitted against her brother-in-law standing for Trinamool but the winner was Mohammad Salim of CPM who snuck past by a little over 1000 votes.

That brings CPM’s tally in Bengal so far to 2. Deepa Das Munshi was also one of Mamata’s most vocal foes in Bengal and Mamata will be extra pleased she has lost and not begrudge the CPM that victory.

But it is likely that this will now go into postal ballots because the margin is so narrow.

Bengali channels also announce that there have been 4.15 lakh NOTA votes cast in Bengal until now.

1.28 pm: Manmohan Singh congratulates Modi

The PMO has tweeted that Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh has called Narendra Modi and congratulated him on his party’s victory in the Lok Sabha elections.

The numbers are looking emphatic.

The latest leads put the NDA ahead in 335 seats, while the BJP has won 282 seats on its own. The UPA is leading in just 61 seats, with the Congress ahead only in 47.

Meanwhile Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa who has emphatically taken the state, has also congratulated Modi and promised to be a ‘responsible political party’. “I wish the new Govt and the new PM well, and hope the new Govt will be friendly towards Tamil Nadu”, she added.

The current trends show that the AIADMK is set to be the third largest political party in the country.

1.10 pm: Manmohan Singh to tender resignation tomorrow at 12.30 pm

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is set to meet President Pranab Mukherjee tomorrow and will tender his resignation.

We are now awaiting Congress President Sonia Gandhi’s speech from New Delhi.

A few results coming in from the national capital:

* Meenakshi Lekhi has won the seat of New Delhi, defeating Congress stalwart Ajay Maken

* Harsh Vardhan has defeated Kapil Sibal and Ashutosh from the seat of Chandni Chowk

1.05 pm: This is an Meanwhile the Aam Aadmi Party has won its first seat, with Bhagwant Mann winning from Sangrur by over a lakh votes.

12.45 pm: This win is a true victory of the BJP in India, says Sushma

BJP leader Sushma Swaraj who is set to win her seat in Vidisha, has said that the unprecedented mandate is a triumph for the BJP in India.

“BJP by itself is getting a clear majority in these elections.Whatever happens ahead is democracy, but for now the BJP has won”, she said.

In news elsewhere meanwhile, Nandan Nilekani has conceded defeat in Bangalore South.

12.30 pm: Modi’s victory tweet is India’s most retweeted ever

Narendra Modi’s tweet proclaiming a win for India has already become India’s most retweeted ever. Within 20 minutes of the tweet going out, it received 24,726

retweets and favourited 14,659 times.

Meanwhile the RSS has reacted, saying that the people of the country have voted for a change in favour of Narendra Modi.

“The mandate of the people for a change was expected. Its a matter of pleasure for us. We congratulate Modiji and the new government which is going to be formed under his leadership. We expect that it would do good work for the benefit of the country,” senior RSS functionary Ram Madhav said here.

He said it was also a matter of pleasure that BJP was heading towards simple majority in Lok Sabha.

“Going by the current trends, it seems that the people have put their faith in BJP through Modi,” Madhav said.

On being asked about the role RSS would play in government formation, he said, “Sangh would have no role in government and in the Council of Ministers. It would be

decided by the party and its leaders.”

Asked about the role played by the organisation during the polls, Madhav said, “Our role was limited only to


 people before the election and about the challenges the nation is facing today.”

He said volunteers of RSS had done a good job through their door-to-door campaigns.

“Our people have done their best to go from door to door to tell people about the need for a change. We are happy that besides major efforts made by Modiji himself and the party and all the efforts made by swayam sevaks, the results we see today favour for a change.”

12.24 pm: Celebrations both inside and outside Dalal street

Dalal Street burst into celebration by 10 am as traders gave one another high-fives and hugs and pats on the back, with even passers-by joining in to scream, “acche din aane waale hain” to the celebrating, largely Gujarati folk emerging from the BSE building.

Some new slogans were also coined: Har Har Modi, Baar Baar Modi, and Aaj Ki Sarkaar, Modi Sarkaar.

Nityanand Shenoy, an investor and MD of a pharma company said the results seem to be better than even the exit polls had predicted, resulting in raucous celebrations among traders.

“NOw, the sensex will reach 30000 in the next two-three months,” said Shenoy. “A stable government will really boost the market.”

12.13 pm: India has won, good days are here, says Modi

An emotional Narendra Modi, who is currently seeking the blessings of his mother has tweeted that good days are here for India:

The Mission 272 Twitter handle has tweeted the following image:

The BJP Prime Ministerial candidate is sitting and talking to his mother, as cheering crowds wait outside.

Check out our interactive map of how results are showing across India hereIndia is washed Saffron

India is washed Saffron

12.00 pm: Markets temper initial highs as BJP marches to 279 on its own

Sentiment in the market seems to be tempered a bit. Both the benchmark indices are now off the highs as mild profit booking seems to have set in.

The Sensex is now up 882 points at 24,782 and the Nifty up 273 points at 7398. The advances to decline ratio on the BSE was skewed towards the declines – 1128:1273. On the NSe, meanwhile, the advances continued to outnumber the declines: 7498:646.

The number of Nifty stocks hitting the 52-week highs also declined to just seven from 24 earlier in the day.

Earlier R Seshasayee of the Hinduja group had a word of caution for the investors who are happily buying away in the market.

Exuberance is fine, he told CNBC-TV18, but to expect that there will be a fast turnaround in the economy is not well founded. The next government will have to take a few tough decisions to get the economy back on its feet. With a decisive mandate for the BJP, will the party do it? Modi’s promises have by and large indicated that he may continue with some of the UPA’s money guzzling schemes.

It is definitely a wait and watch.

11.42 am: Narendra Modi wins Varanasi, NDA leads in 332 seats

Prime Minister in waiting Narendra Modi has formally won from Varanasi as well. Still no margins, but this is just the cherry on top for the man who can easily claim responsibility for this BJP rout of Congress.

The leads are now in for all 543 seats, and the NDA is ahead in 332. The UPA only has 63 seats in Parliament. The BJP on its own is leading is 277 seats, and the Congress 48.

The Congress is in proper mourning mode. Assam CM Tarun Gogoi has resigned, claiming full responsibility for the party’s performance in the northeast.

No word from the Gandhi family yet, although Sonia Gandhi is scheduled to address the


 in a few hours from now.

Here is a look at the counting sheet in Delhi:

11.16 am: Modi to be formally nominated as PM candidate on Sunday

Narendra Modi will be formally elected leader of BJP Parliamentary Party on Sunday. This will set officially set the motion of electing him as the next Prime Minister of the country, party sources told Firstpost. The mandate is indeed historic. This is the first time in the history of independent India that a non Congress party will get a majority on its own.

Once he is elected as leader of the BJP parliamentary party, a meeting of NDA leaders will follow on Monday where he will once again be elected leader of the BJP led coalition. A delegation of NDA leaders will then meet President Pranab Mukherjee to stake their claim to form the new government at the centre.

The fact that the BJP parliamentary party meeting is being convened on the weekend, shows that the leadership is in no mood to relax. The idea is get to business right away and send a message across to the people at large that it electing him as the next Prime Minister of the country, party sources told Firstpost. The mandate is indeed historic. This is the first time in the history of independent India that a non Congress party will get a majority on its own.

Once he is elected as leader of the BJP parliamentary party, a meeting of NDA leaders will follow on Monday where he will once again be elected leader of the BJP led coalition. A delegation of NDA leaders will then meet President Pranab Mukherjee to stake their claim to form the new government at the centre.

The fact that the BJP parliamentary party meeting is being convened on the weekend, shows that the leadership is in no mood to relax. The idea is get to business right away and send a message across to the people at large that it has taken the spirit of the mandate in stride and got to the work in right earnest.

The BJP parliamentary Board will meet on Saturday to take a view on results, discuss emerging political situation and put its seal on Modi’s successor in Gujarat.

A decision on dates to convene meeting of newly elected BJP MPs and NDA leaders, and the procedures to be followed thereafter was taken at a meeting between the Chairman of BJP parliamentary party and the NDA, LK Advani and BJP president Rajnath Singh.

Singh had met Advani with a tentative schedule of in-house meetings as also to brief him of the broad outlines of the meeting that he along with Arun Jaitley and Gadkari had in Gandhinagar on Wednesday.

Advani has also congratulated Modi on the BJP’s performance.

And here is a quote from Nitin Gadkari:


11.00 am: BJP crosses 272 on its own, NDA at 325

Mission 272 has been accomplished and how. With leads in for all seats but one, the BJP is showing leads in 273 seats. Meanwhile the NDA is leading in 325 seats. The UPA is leading in just 66 seats, while theCongress is only leading in 50 seats.

This is the biggest mandate for a party since 1984. Speaking to media, Ravi Shankar Prasad said that this marks an ‘epochal moment in the history of India’

Meanwhile BJP President Rajnath Singh congratulated party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi over the party’s performance in Lok Sabha elections.

Quoting available trends, he said it was a “landslide” in the party’s favour.

Singh tweeted, “Congratulated Shri @narendramodi over the phone on BJP’s superb performance in the Lok Sabha elections. Trends indicate it is a landslide.”

At this point, no one is about to disagree.

Some sage words for the new government however, from Sri Sri Ravisankar.

10.54 am: Modi wave engulfs Gujarat, Modi wins Vadodara by 4 lakh

Riding on the aspiration of making the son of the soil – Narendra Modi – the prime minister, it seems Gujarat has favourably voted for BJP as the party is

leading in all 26 seats in the state.

Early trends show BJP is leading in all the seats, but there is some fight on two seats with Congress candidates.

Meanwhile here is a look at the celebrations in Vadodara:Image: Veeral GokalBJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi has so far got 4,32,446 votes and is leading by over three lakh votes against his nearest Congress rival Madhusudan Mistry, who has polled 1,30,937 votes, in Vadodara.

Veteran BJP leader L K Advani is also leading from Gandhinagar seat

10.50 am: In New York, BJP supporters celebrate with tea and samosas

It’s not just the country which is excited about the Lok Sabha Election results. BJP supporters in New York reportedly gathered in Times Sqaure today to watch the the counting of the elections in India.

According to some of the tweets, people who gathered there were given free tea and samosas while they cheered for BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.

– Deepanjana Pal (@dpanjana) May 16, 2014

Loud Modi, Modi chants by young desis gathered in Times Square in NYC! Nearly 200 people watching @timesnow broadcast!

10.30 am: Modi wins Vadodara, Cong concedes defeat

As the BJP continues its march onwards, the Congress has conceded defeat and said it is ready to sit in opposition. Party president Sonia Gandhi is expected to address the media shortly. A statement from the party has called it a collective failure.

Speaking to the media, Rajiv Shukla said that the party had expected to win over 100 seats and did not expect such a poor performance. The party is leading in just 70 seats so far.

Meanwhile it has been confirmed that Narendra Modi has won Vadodara. The result was expected and he has won by over 4 lakh votes.

10. 25 am: In West Bengal, it’s Mamata all the way

Currently Trinamool is leading in 33 seats, Left Front in 4, Congress in 3 and BJP in 2 in West Bengal. Among candidates leading are Trinamool’s ousted railways minister DInesh Trivedi now back with the party. He is leading against Subhasini Ali standing for the CPM.

Footballer Baichung Bhutia seems to be trailing however to BJP’s Ahluwalia. Some other non-political Trinamool candidates like Harvard


 Sugata Bose and theater personality Arpita Ghosh (who was questioned in the Saradha scam) are leading as well. The Congress’ Deepa Das Munshi and Adhir Chowdhury are leading in her seat but presidential scion Abhijit Mukherjee of the painted and dented fame trailing in his seat.

The BJP is pinning hopes on singer Babul Supriyo leading by 34,000 votes in the industrial town of Asansol. Supriyo had an arms charge filed against him during a bitter campaign.

Avishek Bandyapdhyay, the Diamond Harbour candidate and Mamata’s nephew is leading by 11,000 votes.

10.16 am: Congress workers shout for Priyanka outside HQ

Given that the performance of the Congress party can only be described as dismal (The UPA is only showing leads in 72 of the 536 leads so far), party workers are understandably not happy.

NDTV reported that workers outside the party headquarters are shouting pro Priyanka slogans.

Meanwhile in terms of latest race updates:

Varun Gandhi has won the seat of Sultanpur.

Jaswant Singh is leading in Barmer

Arun Jaitley trailing in Amritsar.

Meanwhile In Tamil Nadu, the AIADMK is leading in 37 constituencies – a stupendous record. If the party maintains this lead till the end, it will surpass all the exit-poll predictions which gave it 22-35 seats.Ever since Jayalalithaa came to power in the state, she had been exhorting her cadres to work towards getting all the 39 Lok Sabha seats in the state so that the party can influence the government formation in Delhi.

However, the numbers may not be of very effective use for Jayalalithaa in Delhi because the NDA is poised to win over 290 seats and will be capable of forming a government on its own.

Even if it ends up in a super-NDA structure, the AIADMK will not be able to flex its muscles as much as it could have, had the lead of NDA been lower.

10.06 am: Modi will lead India to development, says mother

Meanwhile with only the final numbers left to speculation, attention has shifted to the man of this election of campaign – Narendra Modi.

The Chief Minister who is sitting in Gandhinagar, visited his mother Heeraben to seek her blessings.

Speaking to reporters she said, “He has my blessings, he will will lead India to the road of development”.

10.00 am: BJP now leading in over 300 seats

The BJP has crossed leads in 300 seats and there is some serious celebration happening both on the ground and in the markets.

The Sensex is now at 25,319 points.

Among the top 10 gainers on the NSE were SBI up 8.6 percent, PNB 8.6 percent, IndusInd Bank 8.3 percent, Kotak Mahindra Bank 7.68 percent, Maruti Suzuki 7.56 percent, Hero MotoCorp 7.11 percent, HDFC Bank 7.1 percent ICICI Bank 7.02 percent Bank of Baroda 7.47 percent and Axis Bank 6.77 percent.

Of the 10, eight are bank shares and the remaining two automobiles. True, when the economy revives, banks are the ones which will gain the most as their NPAs decrease and profitability increase

What is more amusing is the number of losers – just two. Dr Reddy’s was down by just about 2 percent and TechMahindra 0.01 percent down (if you may call it a decline at all).

9.53 am: Narendra Modi leads by 1.68 lakh votes in Vadodara

The BJP’s prime ministerial nominee Narendra Modi is leading by a whopping 1.68 lakh votes over his Congress rival Madhusudan Mistry in Vadodara.

Initial trends showed Modi getting 2,34,647 votes and Mistry 66,531.

Initial trends from 18 out of 26 seats in Gujarat showed BJP is leading in 17 seats and Congress in one.

Latest numbers: BJP leading in 296 seats, Congress leading in 76. Will we see the BJP/NDA cross 300? It looks likely.

9.45 am: Leads out in 500 seats, BJP set for easy majority

Leads are out now for 500 seats, and the BJP is already ahead in 291. So barring a major catastrophe and surprise, the BJP will easily form the government without the usual scramble for allies.

The BJP is happy, the cadres are celebrating and the Sensex is zooming.

Ache din anewale hain?

For a big picture on what the results mean, click here

9.38 am: BJP heading for 300, Sensex crosses 25,000

Up, up and away! NDA crosses 284 in leads and Sensex 25,000

It is crackers in the market as the NDA crossed 272 mark on leads. The Sensex crossed the 25,000 market. Now the question is will the BJP on its own get a comfortable majority. If it indeed does, the market will further zoom, defying all the rules of gravity. It’s a saffron surge all the way.

The BJP is leading in 284 seats. Remember, the magic number is 272, which they crossed some time ago. The Congress is ahead in 79 seats.

The Sensex meanwhile, has crossed 25,000 points.

9.30 am: Aviation Minister Ajit Singh loses in Bhagpat

Ajit Singh, the aviation minister, has lost Baghpat which is the formal result of this election. That he has lost in the heart of the Jat belt is confirmation that Modi and the BJP have successfully monopolized the Jat vote in UP.

A quick look at the latest number: BJP leading in 276, Congress leading in 83. This looks like its set to be a



9.13 am: NDA heading to 290 seats, Sensex up 1000 points

The BJP is leading is 221 seats, with leads out in over 400 seats. At this rate, the NDA will get over 290 seats. The Congress is leading in only 52 seats, which shows that the party is headed to less than 100 seats.

The market has opened meanwhile, and the Sensex has zoomed 1,000 points.

The BJP is already celebrating. There are firecrackers being burst, drums and dancing outside BJP offices across the country. Meanwhile the Congress is already saying it will introspect. Abhishek Manu Singhvi of the Congress said that the time was right for introspection, but said that regardless of what the Congress did they would have likely lost.

9.00 am: Rahul Gandhi trailing in Amethi in first round

Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi is trailing in Amethi, in the first round of voting. This is to put it bluntly, terrible news for Gandhi, who has been at the front and centre of the Congress campaign. Ahead of the polls pundits said that it would be a huge blow to him if his victory margin fell dramatically (he won by 3.3 lakh votes in 2009) but if he actually goes ahead and loses, this would be an unprecedented blow.

Sonia Gandhi is meanwhile, leading in Rae Bareli.

Some other candidate updates:

BJP’s Harsh Vardhan is leading in Chandni Chowk over Congress’ Kapil Sibal

BJP’s Sushma Swaraj is leading by a margin of 3,552 votes against Laxman Singh of Congress from the Vidisha seat in Madhya Pradesh.

Dileep Singh Bhuria is ahead of his Congress rival and sitting MP Kantilal Bhuria by 909 votes from the Ratlam seat.

Latest leads are out in 330 seats: BJP ahead in 182, Congress in 67.

8.50 am: Here is a quick statewise breakdown of leads so far

Uttar Pradesh: BJP 23, Congress 6, SP 4, BSP 2

Andhra Pradesh: TDP 3, YSR Congress 3

Bihar: BJP 6, RJD 1

Delhi: BJP 2

Gujarat: BJP 17, Congress 3

Haryana: BJP 4, Congress 3

Tamil Nadu: AIADMK 6

Kerala: UDF 13, LDF 7

Karnataka: BJP 18, Congress 9, JDS 1

Maharashtra: BJP 8, Congress 7

Odisha BJD 2, BJP 1, Congress 1

8.42 am: BJP now leading in 100 seats, AAP gains in Punjab

The BJP is leading in 100 seats, pulling well ahead of the Congress which is yet to hit 50. Meanwhile the Aam Aadmi Party has finally opened its account as it were, with a lead coming in from Punjab.

Some candidate updates:

* Rahul Gandhi is leading from Amethi

* Nandan Nilekani is trailing in Bangalore South

8.36 am: Leads out in 150 seats, BJP approaches a 100 fast

We now have leads for over 15o seats, and the BJP is only consolidating its lead, approaching leads in 100 seats at seemingly breakneck speed.

The party is ahead in 81 seats, and the Congress in 42.

Bear in mind, that counting of EVMs has also begun, so the leads will now also start to reflect the actual counting process as well as the postal ballots.

8.30 am: Leads out in first 100 seats, BJP ahead

We have the leads out for the first 100 seats. The BJP is well ahead here, with the party ahead on 52 (a gain of 10), and the Congress ahead in 21.

Here are some quick glimpses of how key candidates are doing:

* Narendra Modi is leading Arvind Kejriwal from Varanasi, UP

* Kapil Sibal is trailing from Chandni Chowk in Delhi

* Shashi Tharoor is leading from Trivandrum, Kerala

* Deve Gowda is leading from Hassan, Karnataka

For more on key candidates, click here

8.20 am: BJP pulling ahead in early leads

The BJP has started pulling ahead in early leads, We have leads in for 55 seats now, and the BJP is ahead in 31 seats, as opposed to the Congress’ 13. The BJP is seeing a gain of 7 seats, while the Congress is down in 6 seats. This is really the best indication of what is happening. The Congress is showing a steady decline in leads, a worrying indication for the party on what is to come.

8.10 am: Seven leads in, BJP – 6, Congress -1

The first leads are coming in, and the BJP expectedly is pulling ahead. At the last count, BJP were ahead in 7, Congress ahead in 3, while ‘Others’ were ahead in 1.

Expect the information to flood in, as counting picks up momentum. However keep in mind that we are seeing postal ballots being counted, which are no real indication of the results. Treat them instead as a hint of what is to come. But it is indicative of trends,

Meanwhile in terms of key battles, Narendra Modi is leading from Vadodara, and NDTV says that VK Singh is ahead in the seat of Ghaziabad.

8.07 am: First lead from Karnataka, BJP 1, Cong 0

The first leads have started coming in. The first two leads are from Karnataka and Kerala, and the BJP is ahead in both.

The Kerala lead is a surprise, given that the party has not won a single Lok Sabha seat in the state.

Early confirmation of a Modi wave? Perhaps.

8.00 am: Counting starts, first trends expected at 9.3o am

Counting has begun in the Lok Sabha elections.

The first trends are expected to come out in moments.

The Election Commission said the counting exercise to be held at 989 counting centres is likely to be


 by 4 pm and trends will start emerging by 9.30 am.

By noon, a final picture could emerge on who would be the major players in the 16th Lok Sabha.

According to EC guidelines, half-an-hour after the postal ballots are counted, the process of counting votes from the over seven lakh EVMs will begin. The ‘ballot unit’ is switched on in the presence of senior poll officials and counting agents of candidates and the result command keyed in to get results per machine.

In order to ensure transparency, EC has deployed micro observers at all counting tables. The returning officers have been directed to provide printout of each counting round and every table to the counting agents of candidates. Lok Sabha elections 2014 witnessed the highest-ever turnout with 66.38 per cent of an estimated 814 million voters exercising their franchise – the highest ever in the history of general elections.

7.42 am:Kejriwal still sure of beating Modi

Staring down the abyss of bleak exit poll results, AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal is still putting on a brave face.

Regardless of the fact that BJP cadres in the constituency have already put up banners congratulating Narendra Modi, he says he is still confident of winning.

Speaking to reporters Kejriwal said, “I am sure people of Varanasi have voted for truth, I am going there right now as well”.

7.33 am: Why we will see delayed results this year

This year, the results are expected to come in a lot slower than they did in 2009. Why? Because of an improved counting process, says the Indian Express.

According to the newspaper, part of the reason is because there 2014 has 50 percent more EVM control units than in 2009, as well as significantly more candidates.

Furthermore, the second round of counting will not be started until the data from the first round is compiled, verified and released by the Returning Officer. In 2009, both rounds of counting were done simultaneously.

CEC VS Sampath speaking to reporters this morning said, “Counting is a critical activity, utmost transparency ensured in counting hall”.

7.18 am: BJP ready with crackers, ladoos

Narendra Modi and the BJP may be outwardly cautious even in the wake of exit polls that are giving the BJP led NDA a massive victory.

Reports coming in from Uttar Pradesh say that party cadre in Kanpur from where Murli Manohar Joshi is in the fray have started bursting crackers.

And at the party headquarters in Delhi. Sweets and firecracks have been ordered in huge quantities. That’s right – lots and lots of ladoos.

And ANI has tweeted out a picture of this banner outside the BJP headquarters in Delhi:

And here’s a picture from Gujarat

7.00 am: Are the exit polls right to predict a Modi sarkar?

Will months of hype culminate in a Modi sarkar? That is the million dollar question that will be finally answered in a few hours.

Months of relentless campaigning across the political spectrum, mudslinging, allegations, political back and forth, the making and breaking of alliances, and of course nine phases of polling spread across one and a half months will all culminate today.

Here is a quick round up of the key aspects of the polls so far:

Exit polls

The biggest question of course is, have the exit polls got it right? Across the board the polls have predicted that the BJP led NDA will easily form the next government, although there are some differences in ranges and the number of seats each party will get in various states.

The final version of the IBN-CSDS National Election Tracker survey — which includes the last day of polling — predicted that the BJP-led NDA is expected to comfortably reach a majority with between 274-286 seats.

The Congress-led UPA is expected to win just 92-102 seats with the Congress possibly winning the lowest total ever in a general election. The inclusion of the final phase of voting in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal only marginally shifted the national vote shares of the major parties, notably nudging the BJP number down from 34 percent to 33.5 percent.

ABP-Nielsen, on the other hand, predicted 281 seats for the NDA and just 97 for UPA. AAP has got 4 seats, while others (which will translate into a possible Third Front in this case) will win 161 seats.

The survey by Times Now-ORG says the NDA is set to win 249 seats, while the UPA is set to win 148. This is the only poll that says that the NDA will not be able to form the government on its own.

Representational image: ReutersOther exit poll surveys include Zee News, which projected the NDA getting 289 seats, the UPA winning just 100 seats and 153 seats for ‘others’.

India TV gives the NDA 289 seats and the UPA 106 seats. India Today said that the BJP-led NDA could end with 261-283 seats, while the Congress-led UPA will win 110-120 seats.

(For more on all the exit polls, click here).

Who will come the closest? We’ll know in a matter of hours!

The importance of UP

Much hinges on Uttar Pradesh, including how far or how close the NDA gets to 272. Amit Shah, Modi’s closest aide and in charge of UP for this election, has projected 55 seats for the party out of UP’s 80. This is ambitious, but not impossible to imagine — if a couple of dozen seats that are to be very keenly contested go the BJP’s way.

Exit polls have predicted up to 40-odd seats for the BJP in UP, up from the 10 LS MPs they have from the state right now.
However the NDTV-Hansa poll that was released on Wednesday, gave the NDA 56 seats in the state, with a range that goes all the way up to 61.

Old-timers in the BJP also believe the 55-seat projection may be unrealistic. Samajwadi Party and the BSP have their areas of influence and it’s difficult to believe the other parties put together will all win less than 30 seats.

The AAP factor

Much has been made of ‘new kids on the block’ AAP, especially after their stunning debut in the Delhi assembly elections and their equally stunning decision to resign from government in just 49 days.

Although the party certainly grabbed media eyeballs and attention – only helped by the fact that Arvind Kejriwal decided to take on Narendra Modi in Varanasi – it does not look set to do very well at all.Image from IBN-livefactor

Much has been made of ‘new kids on the block’ AAP, especially after their stunning debut in the Delhi assembly elections and their equally stunning decision to resign from government in just 49 days.

Although the party certainly grabbed media eyeballs and attention – only helped by the fact that Arvind Kejriwal decided to take on Narendra Modi in Varanasi – it does not look set to do very well at all.

All the exit polls are giving the party less than ten seats overall, a far cry from the 100 that Kejriwal declared that he was confident of winning.

Many feel however that the real contribution of the AAP lies in the qualitative change it has brought to the nation’s politics.

But where does the party head from here?

As Firstpost columnist Chandrakant Naidu noted “The government in Delhi which it formed after a spectacular electoral debut as a year-old-party is lost. As is a big chunk of its supporters. If it fails to


 a decentperformance in the Lok Sabha polls in Delhi, it would be a loss of face. It would be starting from the scratch – minus the goodwill – if elections are held for the assembly some time in future”

What is truly tragic for AAP is that they came up so short in an election that brought out thousands of young voters. This should really have been their election. But Modi capitalised on it instead.

Who are the potential NDA allies if it falls short of a majority?

The predictions of the exit polls notwithstanding, the NDA is not taking any chances, and have already started wooing parties for potential support if they fall short of a majority.

The BJP is apparently in talks with Naveen Patnaik’s BJD which is expected to do well in Odisha, Jayalalithaa who has been widely predicted to complete a near sweep in Tamil Nadu, and Jagan Reddy, who is tipped to be the first Chief Minister of Seemandhra.

The party has also reached out to the former NCP leader PA Sangma for some additional numbers from the north-east.

Source: First Post