Around 900 million people are eligible to vote in the Indian elections, which started taking place this week and should end on May 19. The latest polls have hinted Mr Modi’s ruling party Bharatiya Janata Party is on track to win a second term. This is despite the BJP failing to live up to its promises on economic reform and tackling youth unemployment.
But Roger Moser, assistant professor of International Management focused on India at the University of St Gallen, in Switzerland, believes Mr Modi still has a strong chance of winning.
He says many Hindu people do not think the opposition parties are a “real alternative”.
He said to Express.co.uk: “Prime Minister Modi’s BJP and its allies are likely to win the elections due to three major developments in the Indian society.
“First, the largest part of the Hindu middle and upper class is disappointed by Modi’s economic performance so far but does not see Congress and its leader as a real alternative.
“Second, a thin majority of the Hindu lower middle class and low-income population is tempted by Congress’ basic income promises but still doesn’t trust their new ideas to be realised as there exist too many open questions and broken promises from the past.”
Mr Moser added Mr Modi may have a less “dominating” role in Indian politics this time around, after failing to deliver on many of his big ideas the first time around.
He said: “Prime Minister Modi himself is not seen as an actual threat by most of the Muslim population in India.
However, PM Modi’s BJP is unlikely to have a similar dominating role in Indian politics as they have today. In the long run, this might be exactly what the country needs.
After Mr Modi’s rise to power in 2014, at least five million Indians lost their jobs between 2016 and 2018, a Bengaluru-based private university said in a report today.
Amit Basole, an economist and lead author of the report, said: ”In addition to rising open unemployment among the higher educated, the less educated (and likely informal) workers have also seen job losses and reduced work opportunities since 2016.”
However, the report did not say how many jobs were created during the period.
Mr Modi’s withdrawal of high value currency notes from circulation in November 2016, is being blamed for disrupting small businesses, which resulted in people losing their jobs.
His aim was to curb tax evasion and promoting digital transactions.
The introduction of a national sales tax the following year also lead to difficulties for some businesses.
The unemployed were mostly higher educated and young people, in the 20-24 age range, according to the study titled “State of Working India 2019”.
It said: ”Among urban men, for example, this age group accounts for 13.5 percent of the working age population but 60 percent of the unemployed.”