Amit Shah addresses press conference in the presence of PM Modi

Nellie Chapman
May 18, 2019

"BJP does not agree with this statement, we condemn it", said party spokesman GVL Narasimha Rao in a statement to media. He said he was constrained to say that among all the institutions undermined by the BJP, the Election Commission of India (ECI) had also been emasculated as an independent watchdog.

He addressed the conference with party chief Amit Shah.

In a surprised move, Modi showed up on the dais for a scheduled press conference by BJP president Amit Shah, who gave a detailed report card on the performance of the NDA government as well as party's extensive electioneering.

Intensifying her attack on the Prime Minister on Friday, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra called Narendra Modi the "world's biggest actor" and said that it would have been better if the people had elected Amitabh Bachchan in his place. The prime minister said that poll campaign was a success for the ruling dispensation. "It will happen after a long time in the country, our Government will come to power with absolute majority for second consecutive time", he said. "We will work on it one by one and bring a new governance culture", he added. Modi took no questions.

Speaking before Modi, Amit Shah told reporters, "We got historic mandate in 2014". We started our election campaign from January 16.Our target was to win the 120 Lok Sabha seats which we couldn't win the last time.

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At his interaction, Rahul Gandhi said the BJP government had marketing and television but truth was on the side of the Congress. It was held in a positive spirit.

He responded to the very first question saying: "I am a disciplined soldier, the party president is everything for me".

"I believe some things we can proudly say to the world". The PM, after addressing meetings in Khargone, was expected to interact with a group of party full-timers who had slogged through the campaign, but he changed his schedule to reach the headquarters early for Shah's media engagement. Polls predict Modi will be re-elected but with a reduced majority after scooping up 282 of the 543 seats at stake in the Lok Sabha, India's lower house of parliament, in 2014.

The 2019 Lok Sabha elections are being held in seven phases, and the final phase of polling will be on May 19. The results will be declared on May 23.

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