"In India itself, there are still strong holdouts resistant to the attractions of the BJP, though some of those who had staunchly opposed the BJP in the past are now toning down their criticism. Shekhar Gupta, editor of the liberal Indian Express—one of numerous newspapers that excoriated Modi during the 2002 riots—wrote in a recent column mockingly titled “Secularism is dead!”: “This anti-Modi battle cry is lazy, illiberal and an affront to Muslims—and Hindus.” But he makes two strong points.
One, the BJP-led alliance would get no more than a third of the popular vote at best, and though this may be enough for it to come to power under India’s first-past-the-post voting system, what is clear is that the vast majority of the Hindus, who form more than 80% of the population, have not given up on secularism. Two, even the 30% who might end up voting for Modi would be doing so not because they want to build temples or banish the Muslims to Pakistan, but because they want an alternative to “the weakest, most incompetent, uncommunicative and incoherent full-term government” in India’s history (the Congress)."
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The real reason Indian intellectuals are backing Narendra Modi