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The pandemic could be Indian leader Modi’s undoing. But millions won’t ditch him just yet.

Dr. Satyendra Kumar Tiwary considers Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to be superhuman. Leaders like Modi come “once every 2500 years”, he says, and should be remembered among the great people of Indian history, such as Mahatma Gandhi, and the Buddha.

“The world will never see other leaders like Modi,” said a 47-year-old general surgery professor in Varanasi, Modi’s parliamentary constituency and one of the most sacred cities for Hindus. Said. “He’s not a man, he’s a superman. He’s a saint.”

Like many Modi supporters, Tiwali is proud that the 70-year-old Prime Minister has worked more than 18 hours a day and hasn’t been absent for 23 years. I also made a degree.

It is exactly the image of these hard-working men that has driven Modi to: I have little time in my private life, but enough for yoga and his Hindu faith. Landslide reelection In India’s 2019 general vote. The apology-free Hindu nationalist agenda of his party received 100 million more votes than the major opposition.

Modi, who has ruled India since 2014, has kickstarted the country’s incredible economy, created millions of new jobs, and despite a retreat in efforts to provide health care to India’s poorest citizens. Continues to be popular in India.

However, India is currently plagued by a devastating second wave of Covid-19, Crematorium full of bodies And that Medical system under enormous burden..Modi is making him hot Mismanagement of national health crisisBecause it could not prevent millions of pilgrims from gathering during local elections without the rules of social distance and wearing masks. Kumbh Mela Religious festival. This contributed to one of the most dramatic infectious disease surges in the country.

Modi was “almost certain” to be politically hit, just as the pandemic contributed to Donald Trump’s defeat in the United States, said Ashtosh Burshney, director of the Center for Contemporary South Asia at Brown University. Stated.

“Very most of the bases are not very fascinated because they lost their loved ones. They lost their brothers, their parents, their children,” he says. I did.

Modi’s faithful foundation

Modi may be 70 years old, but he also has an army of young Indian supporters.

Rishabh Meta, a 24-year-old college student, said he was attracted to Modi’s unwavering nationalism and pondered the work of leaders in improving India’s defense system.

When asked about the country’s high Covid-19 death toll, Mehta said he believed the numbers were inflated by state leaders trying to undermine Modi’s image. Mehta believes that there is a targeted “… campaign to defame the central government.”

But Mehta’s loyalty remains strong after losing one of his close friends to the virus. Meta himself took his friend to a hospital in the capital, New Delhi, where he desperately described the chaotic scene of “people screaming, people coughing, people crying.”

“It was a very scary moment for all of us,” he said.

Most experts and critics say the opposite, and Indian media organizations provide evidence that the country underestimates the dead, either intentionally or simply because India cannot measure a pandemic. I am collecting more and more. True influence..

Another millennial generation of Modi is Vagisha Soni, a 29-year-old researcher in Delhi. Soni has supported oxygen sources and ICU beds in a serious shortage. Some of her friends lost their parents to the virus. And like medical professor Tiwali, she sees something even better in Modi.

“I always felt that there had to be one leader to guide us, so that was Modi. There were no other numbers,” she said.

Regarding dealing with the pandemic, Soni pointed out that India’s per capita mortality rate is not as bad as India is perceived from afar.She also said the United States “couldn’t handle [the pandemic]It has the best medical infrastructure and the best facilities. Therefore, it is natural that India cannot respond, and she argued that it was unfair to use Modi as a “punching bag.”

She has a point. India’s population is much larger than most countries, so it can be difficult to determine how bad the situation is. Data from Johns Hopkins UniversityTracking global numbers during a pandemic shows that India’s mortality rate is 22 per 100,000, far lower than the United States reported 179.

In raw numbers, India has suffered from the worst coronavirus outbreaks since the outbreak of the pandemic, with more than 400,000 infections per day at the beginning of May. The death toll has exceeded 300,000 There are concerns that the actual price could be much higher on May 24th.

“Modi’s followers” lose faith

The effects of the pandemic are strongly felt in rural India, where the lack of medical infrastructure has forced people to travel miles to access treatment and is a potential contributor. Hundreds of thousands of unreported deaths..

A former Air Force officer in the Chapra district of Bihar didn’t want to name him for fear of safety, but initially voted for Modi. He believed that he would make a difference and create jobs for young people, but now he has turned.Against him after seeing Impact of COVID-19 In his village.

“When you go to the village and say Modi’s name, people are ready to kill you. They are angry. They don’t want to hear Modi’s name.”

He charges exorbitant prices for private ambulances to take villagers to hospitals about 90 km (about 55 miles) away, and demand for basic medicines such as paracetamol raises prices from the rooftop. He said he was sending.

“If you have money, you are alive, otherwise you will die,” he said.

Ashutosh Varshney of Brown University said Modi’s political fate depends on his clear rivals appearing before the next general election in 2024.

India’s vast population makes polls difficult, but there are some signs of regurgitation to Modi outside the BJP’s home state. In the West Bengal elections in April, the BJP won more seats, but failed to win in the battlefield states, as it had hoped for years.

The Modi administration felt that this power was declining and sought to regain control of the critical narrative that questioned the position of the prime minister as India’s savior. According to some local media, 25 people have recently been arrested in Delhi for posting posters criticizing Modi for exporting vaccines to other countries.

Uttar Pradesh police also accused 26-year-old Shashan Kuyadab of trying to find his grandfather’s oxygen cylinder, who died on Twitter. BBC.. Twitter has also deleted a number of posts criticizing the government’s response to India’s request, raising concerns about state-sponsored censorship.

Modi’s future may also depend on how well he can divert the pandemic accusations to local leaders, as his party was trying to do in a less powerful area.

However, state rights are limited by the funds received. According to OECD data, India spends very little on health care, typically less than 4% of GDP. The United States spends about 17% and the United Kingdom spends about 10%.

“SuccessModicareThe country’s health care system for the poor, promised in 2018 prior to the election, is restricted because it is very underfunded and experts say it is unlikely to lead to concrete changes. It has been.

Even long-term BJP voters are beginning to wonder if Modi should continue to work.

“My wife sent me a message that there was no more oxygen left in the hospital,” he told CNN.

A self-proclaimed former “Modi believer” from Lucknow also didn’t want to name him, but said he and his family had voted for generations of Hindu nationalist parties, including the BJP. But after losing his wife to Covid-19 earlier this year, he can’t forgive the man he once respected.

“I did my best to get some cylinders, but I couldn’t. Nobody was here to help me. I couldn’t do anything … Every country in the world cares about its citizens, not India. “

“Blood is in their hands,” he said of the BJP. “That blood-they can never wash it.”

The pandemic could be Indian leader Modi’s undoing. But millions won’t ditch him just yet. Source link The pandemic could be Indian leader Modi’s undoing. But millions won’t ditch him just yet.

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