mandag 8. april 2019

The verdict on India’s strongman, Narendra Modi

Spend enough time discussing Indian politics this year and you will inevitably find yourself contemplating the chest proportions of a 68-year-old man. In Agra, the north Indian city famous for the Taj Mahal, it only took a few minutes.

“He has a 56-inch chest,” Harsh Bhagal said when asked why he supports India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi. It is a boast the Indian leader first made on the campaign trail in 2014. His opponents laughed, but five years later, 23-year-old Bhagal is preparing to cast his first vote for the Bharatiya Janata Janata party (BJP), inspired by its strongman leader. “When Pakistan attacked us in Kashmir [in February],” he said – pausing momentarily to take a selfie of our interview – “Modi waited 13 days for the Hindu mourning period. Then he retaliated.”