Modi's party forms government in Gujarat for seventh consecutive term

The BJP has been governing the western state since 1995, with the Prime Minister serving as chief minister from 2001 until 2014

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi greets Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel after the BJP's landslide win in Gujarat state's legislative elections. AFP
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party formed a government in the western state of Gujarat on Monday, its seventh consecutive term in the state.

Bhupendra Patel was sworn in as chief minister for the second term in succession, in a ceremony attended by Mr Modi and a host of senior government officials, including Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, in the state capital Gandhinagar.

The BJP has been in government in Gujarat since 1995 — with Mr Modi serving as chief minister from 2001 until 2014, when he became Prime Minister.

The party won a landslide victory in the Legislative Assembly elections, winning 156 of the 182 seats with a vote share of nearly 53 per cent.

The main opposition party Congress could win only 17 seats, while the Aam Aadmi Party, founded in 2012 and led by Delhi’s Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal took just five seats.

Opposition parties had focused on issues including unemployment, development, health, education and high electricity prices.

The bridge collapse in the city of Morbi in October, which killed at least 132 people, was also a key electoral issue.

But the BJP was boosted by Mr Modi’s popularity and his intensive campaigning in achieving its comprehensive victory.

India's Prime Minister and party colleagues launched a months-long effort to galvanise support, claiming the BJP has transformed Gujarat into one of India’s most prosperous states.

Updated: December 12, 2022, 1:08 PM