India votes 2014

I have a piece up in “The Conversation” this week about the 2014 Indian election and the implications for India’s foreign policy. Both the Congress and BJP election manifestos confirm that foreign policy is not much of a feature in India’s elections. They also confirm that national party manifestos don’t necessarily mean all that much in India’s elections.

The unanswered questions regarding Modi’s role in the horrific 2002 violence in Gujarat have not disqualified him as a candidate. When Modi was handed his “clean chit” by a supreme court team last year, I still did not think this “Modi wave” was a possibility. But here we are.

While the prospect of a Modi-led government is distressing for many, many good individuals I know, love, and very much respect are supporting Modi and his party. I’m still trying to make sense of this. This support seems to stem from years of frustration with the current government, and hope that Modi represents some sort of positive change. I’m planning on keeping my head down and focusing on promoting the academic study of South Asia.


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