BJP to score big in South, NDA will cross 400, says Modi in unwavering confidence for Lok Sabha results

Modi said his opponents have created a myth that the BJP has no strength or presence in the southern states.

ByPTI

Published May 20, 2024 | 11:45 AMUpdatedMay 20, 2024 | 11:45 AM

PM Modi attacks Congress

By Vijay Joshi and Kumar Rakesh

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asserted that the BJP will emerge as the single largest party in the south, as he remained unwaveringly confident that his NDA alliance will cross 400 seats in Lok Sabha when election results come out on 4 June.

“Our strategy for the entire nation is the same. Phir ek baar modi sarkar. Aur chaar June 400 paar,” Modi said in an interview to PTI Videos on late Sunday, 19 May.

Modi said his opponents have created a myth that the BJP has no strength or presence in the southern states.

“Look at the 2019 elections. The largest party even then in the south was the BJP. Again, I say this: the largest party in the south this time will be BJP, and its allies will add more (seats) to it,” he said.

‘Single-largest party in South India’

In a separate written reply to questions submitted by PTI, Modi said, “We will be the single-largest party in Southern India and by an even bigger margin than the last time.”

“We have seen a jump in mind-share already. We will see a big jump in seat share and vote share for us across the region,” he wrote.

Southern India accounts for 131 of the 543 Lok Sabha seats. In the outgoing House, BJP has 29 members besides one independent backed by it, from Karnataka.

Even in eastern India, “we are witnessing a massive surge of support from the people … which is giving sleepless nights to people in sections of the media and politics in Bhubaneswar, Kolkata and even in Delhi,” he wrote.

“The blessings of the people will take us to a record-breaking mandate. We will see more seats from all parts of the country, particularly from the south and the east,” he said in the written reply.

“NDA is on course to achieve the 400 seats,” he wrote.

“All assessments of the past phases of the elections show that the NDA is in pole position and the Congress along with its INDI alliance is struggling to even open its account in some states.”

Also Read: Lok Sabha polls – Phase 5: Over 10% voter turnout in first two hours

‘Truly a national party’

In the video interview, Modi said the BJP has been a truly national party “from Day 1, not only in our geographical presence but also in our ideology.”

“For us, nation first is the foundation of our ideology. If we take decisions for Bengal or Kerala it will be on the basis of nation first,” he said.

Asked about the national results, he said: “We have set out to cross 400. After four phases of elections, I can say with confidence that our estimate was correct, and more than our estimate the determination of people (janata janardhan) was stronger.”

He said the narrative about BJP’s weakness in the south is part of a campaign that has painted the party variously as urban centric, male centric, north centric and a “Baniya-Brahmin” party.

“A myth has been spread. There is an ecosystem in our nation for years that creates all kinds of myths, to mislead the nation and to destroy the nation,” he added.

“It was also said that we are a Baniya Brahmin party. But the largest number of Dalit, OBC and tribal MP/MLAs are from BJP. They do this deliberately, and a similar myth has been spread that we are not present in the south.”

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(Disclaimer: The headline, subheads, and intro of this report along with the photos may have been reworked by South First. The rest of the content is from a syndicated feed, and has been edited for style.)