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  • BJP-led NDA set to return to power at the Centre; bags 350 of 542 Lok Sabha seats; BJP alone gets absolute majority with 302 seats.

  • Congress-led UPA secures 90 seats; Congress gets 52; Others 98.

  • Union Cabinet to meet this evening to recommend dissolution of 16th Lok Sabha.

  • Four new Supreme Court judges sworn-in, increasing the strength to full 31.

  • In Jammu and Kashmir, so-called chief of an Al-Qaeda affiliate killed in an encounter in Pulwama district.

  • And in Boxing, MC Mary Kom to fight for Gold medal at India Open International Tournament in Assam today.


Sealing its phenomenal electoral victory, the Narendra Modi-led BJP crossed the 300 mark and was leading in one seat as counting for votes for 542 Lok Sabha seats neared its end today. The massive exercise began yesterday morning with early trends establishing the BJP's conclusive lead. With the BJP riding a Modi wave that took it past its 2014 tally of 282, the opposition was left way behind with the Congress winning only 52 seats, two less than it needs for a Leader of Opposition post in the lower house and marginally more than the 44 it got in the last general elections. Regional parties followed the Congress in the electoral table. The DMK with 23 wins, the Trinamool Congress and the YSR Congress with 22 each, the Shiv Sena with 18 and the Janata Dal-United with 16 made their presence felt in an election. Left parties CPI and CPI-M were left with five seats -- three for the CPI-M and two for the CPI. This is about half of their tally of 10 in 2014.

Election Commission figures also showed that the BJP has won 302 and was leading in one.

The BJP and its allies in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) are poised to clinch around 350 seats as against their previous 336. With this the NDA is set to return to power at the Centre. After Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi, Modi is the third Prime Minister of the country and the first non-Congress one who has been able to retain power for a second term with full majority.

Congress Leader Sonia Gandhi retained Rai Bareily while the party president Rahul Gandhi lost Amethi to Union Minister Smriti Irani by a margin of over 55,000 votes. Union Minister Maneka Gandhi won from Sultanpur. Other Union Ministers who emerged victorious include General VK Singh form Ghaziabad, Mahesh Sharma from Gautam Buddha Nagar, Santosh Kumar Gangwar from Bareilly, Anupriya Patel of NDA ally Apna Dal(S) from Mirzapur, Dr. Satyapal Singh from Baghpat and Niranjan Jyoti from Fatehpur.

Varun Gandhi of BJP won Pilibhit seat while Bhojpuri actor and BJP candidate Ravi Kishan won from Gorakhpur. Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav  retains Mainpuri seat while party President Akhilesh Yadav won from Azamgarh.

In Jammu and Kashmir, National Conference and BJP have won three seats each. However results of only five seats have been officially declared. Returning officer told our correspondent that result of Baramulla seat has not been officially announced due to technical issues. He said,  National Conference candidate Mohd. Akbar Lone has won the seat by a margin of 29 thousand votes and the settlement of the issue will not impact the outcome. 

In Uttar Pradesh, results for all the 80 seats have come in. BJP has bagged 62 seats and its ally Apna Dal 2. BSP has secured 10 seats while its ally Samajwadi party won 5 and Congress one. The third partner of Mahagathbandhan - RLD could not open its account. The last seat declared has been won by BSP candidate Atul Kumar Singh from Ghosi by over 1 lakh 20 thousand votes against his rival Harinarayan of BJP.

In Odisha, 19 results out of 21 seats have been declared so far. While Biju Janata Dal has bagged 10 seats, 8 has gone in favour of BJP and Congress one. Results of only two constituencies are yet to come in.

"Several ministers in the Naveen Patnaik ministry who contested the Assembly elections have won in their constituencies. Prominent among those who are leading include Finance Minister Sashibhusan Behera, Bikram Keshari Arukha and Sushant Singh. BJP’s prominent gainers in the Lok Sabha seat are Union Tribal Affairs Minister Jual Oram from Sundergarh, Aparajita Sarangi from Bhubaneswar, national BJP secretary Suresh Pujari from Baragarh. Similarly, former union minister Chandrasekhar Sahu who just joined the BJD a few months back got elected from from Berhampur parliamentary constituency. Among the prominent losers in the Lok Sabha polls include the BJP national vice-president Baijayant from Kendrapada seat and BJP’s national spokes person Sambit Patra from Puri and BJD’s Rajya Sabha Member Prasanna Acharya and state revenue member Maheswar Mohanty among other prominent losers. State Congress president Niranjan Patnaik was defeated in both the seats of Ghasipura and Bhandaripokhari. However, leader of the opposition in the outgoing Assembly Narasingh Mishra of Congress won the Bolangir assembly seat. The simultaneous votes for the elections to 21 Lok Sabha and 146 Assembly seats in Odisha were held in four phases in April. WITH SN PATNAIK'S REPORT Sambalpur, FOR ANUJA AVNISH BHARAJDUWAJ, FOR AIR News."

In Gujarat, the BJP has won all the 26 Lok Sabha seats at stake as the people in the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi stood firmly behind him for the second consecutive time after 2014. The BJP got a vote share of over 62 per cent and the minimum margin of its victory was 1.27 lakh votes, reflecting the massive scale of saffron sweep. Like in 2014, the Congress failed to open its account this time around also. While Modi did not contest election from the state this time, BJP chief Amit Shah, who also hails from Gujarat, won by a huge margin from Gandhingar in his maiden Lok Sabha election foray.

In Vadodara, BJP candidate Ranjan Bhatt won by a margin of over 5.84 lakh votes against Congress's Prashant Patel. Notably, she has crossed Modi's victory margin of 5.70 lakh in the 2014 elections from Vadodara.

In Tamil Nadu, DMK-led UPA has wrested 37 of 38 seats from the AIADMK in the Lok Sabha elections. State ruling party retained only the Theni seat. Congress candidate Su Thirunavukkarasar won by biggest margin of over 4 lakh 59 thousand votes in Tiruchirapalli seat and the VCK leader and DMK ally Thol Tirumavalavan won by the thin margin of 3219 votes.

In one of the biggest ever assembly bye-elections in the state, AIADMK bagged nine seats, whereas DMK won in 13. DMK’s strength in the Assembly has now gone up to 110 while the ruling AIADMK has increased its tally to maintain a comfortable majority on the floor of the house. More from our correspondent:

"The DMK has emerged as the second largest opposition party in the Lok Sabha. Within the state, the people have given a mandate for the ruling dispensation to save itself from any loss of majority in the Assembly. Parties like PMK, DMDK, Puthiya Tamizhakam, AMMK floated by TTV Dinakaran, actor Kamal Haasan’s fledgling Makkal Needhi Maiyam and Naam Tamilar party have drawn a blank in both the Parliament elections and the Assembly bye-elections. Jayasingh, AIR News, Chennai."

BJP has swept Madhya Pradesh also winning 28 seats while Congress could get only one in Chhindwada. BJP's Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur defeated Former Chief Minister Digvijaya Singh of Congress by over 3 Lakh 64 thousand votes. Union Minister Narendra Singh Tomar wins Morena seat. Senior Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia has lost his traditional Guna seat by over 1 lakh 25 thousand votes to BJP's Krishna Pal Singh.

"The BJP, which has lost assembly elections just six months ago in Madhya Pradesh but made a spectacular comeback in the Lok Sabha polls by winning 28 of the 29 seats at stake. The Congress, currently in power in the state, has reduced to just one seat. The BJP, upbeat by its showing in the Lok Sabha polls, will definitely create trouble in the coming days for congress government in the state. The state BJP president Rakesh Singh has already demanded resignation of Chief Minister Kamal Nath on moral ground. He says Congress has lost people’s support in the state.As Kamal Nath government enjoys a wafer thin majority in the 230-member assembly, it will be a challenge for the Kamal nath to keep his flock of MLAs together.The Kamal Nath government is being supported by the BSP and the SP, which have two and one MLA, respectively. Four Independent MLAs are also backing the Congress-led government. Sanjeev Sharma, AIR News, Bhopal."

In Uttarakhand, BJP has won all the five seats.  

In Delhi, BJP has won all the seven parliamentary seats with overwhelming margins. Our correspondent has filed this report:

"BJP candidate from West Delhi Pravesh Sahib Singh Verma won the seat with a record breaking margin of over 5 lakh 78 thousand votes. Cricketer turned politician Gautam Gambhir won the East Delhi seat while North East Delhi seat was retained by party's state president Manoj Tiwari. Meenakshi Lekhi retained the New Delhi Constituency and Singer turned Politician Hans Raj Hans won from North West Delhi. Union Minister Dr Harshvardhan was again elected from Chandni Chowk seat and the South Delhi seat was retained by Ramesh Bidhuri. During the last General election, ruling AAP was in the second spot in all seats but this time three of its candidates lost their deposits. The performance of Congress was improved from the last time and five of its candidates  got the second position. ANUPAM MISHRA, AIR NEWS, DELHI".     

In Punjab, result of all the 13 Lok Sabha seats have come in. Congress has won eight seats followed by BJP and the Shiromani Akali Dal two each while AAP one. Former Union Minister Manish Tewari of the Congress has won from Anandpur Sahib. The party has also won Amritsar, Faridkot, Fatehgarh Sahib, Jalandhar, Khadoor Sahib, Ludhiana and Patiala. BJP candidates have won Gurdaspur and Hoshiarpur seat and SAD candidates bagged Bathidna and Firozpur seats. In Amritsar, Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri of BJP has lost.  BJP candidate and actor Sunny Deol has won Gurdaspur seat and Bhagwant Mann of the Aam Admi Party secured Sangrur seat.

In Haryana, the BJP has registered major victory as it has won all 10 Lok Sabha seats of the state. Union Minister Rao Inderjit Singh has retained Gurgaon,  seat defeating his Congress rival Capt. Ajay Singh by huge margin of nearly 4 lakh votes. In Hisar, Brijendra Singh has registered a huge win by securing over  3 lakh votes. Sanjay Bhatia has bagged Karnal seat by a huge margin of over 6 anf half lakh votes. Nayab Singh has been declared winner in Kurukshetra. Sunita Duggal bagged Sirsa seat. Other prominent winners are Ramesh Chander Kaushik in Sonipat, Ratan Lal Kataria in Ambala, Dharambir Singh in Bhiwani-Mahendragarh,

Krishan Pal in Faridabad and Arvind Kumar Sharma in Rohtak.

In Chandigarh, Kirron Kher has defeated Congress candidate Pawan Kumar Bansal.

In Himachal Pradesh also the ruling BJP has won all the 4 Lok Sabha seats. Anurag Thakur has won in Hamirpur, Suresh Kumar Kashyap in Shimla, Ram Swaroop Sharma in Mandi and Kishan Kapoor in Kangra. 

In Rajasthan, out of 25 seats, BJP has won 24 while its ally Rashtriya Loktantrik Party one. Union Minister Col. Rajyawardhan Rathore of BJP retains Jaipur Rural, by a margin of nearly 4 lakh votes. Son of former CM Vasundhara Raje and Sitting MP Dushyant Singh of BJP retains Jhalawar Baran.

In Maharashtra, all the 48 results have been declared. Out of this BJP gets 23 seats and its ally Shivsena 18. NCP has bagged 4 seats while Congress and All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen get one seat each. Amravati seat has gone in favour of an independent candidate. Union Minister Nitin Gadkari retains Nagpur seat. Daughter of NCP chief Sharad Pawar, Supriya Sule bags Baramati. Congress state unit Chief and Former Chief Minister of Maharastra Ashok Chavan has lost in Nanded while party candidate and film actor Urmila Matondkar was defeated in Mumbai North.

In Goa, both BJP and Congress have bagged one seat each while Union Minister of state Shripad Naik has won North Goa seat, Congress leader Francisco Sardinha gets South Goa seat.

In West Bengal, all the 42 results have come in. Out of this Trinamool Congress  has bagged 22, BJP 18, and Congress 2.

In Bihar, all the results have been declared. Out of 40 seats BJP has bagged 17 seats while its ally Janta Dal (United) gets 16 and Lok Janshakti Party got six. Congress could manage only one. Prominent winners of BJP are Union ministers Ravi Shankar Prasad, Giriraj Singh, Gopal Jee Thakur, sitting MP Dr. Sanjay Jaiswal, Union Minister R.K. Singh and BJP State President and sitting MP Nityanand Rai. Ravi Shankar Prasad defeated Shatrughan Sinha of Congress while Giriraj Singh defeated Kanhaiya Kumar of Communist Party of India. Chirag Paswan the sitting MP and son of Union Minister Ram Vilas Pawan of Lok Janshakti Party won from Jamui (SC) constituency.

In Jharkhand, all the 14 results have been declared. BJP has got eleven while AJSU party, Congress and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha gets one each. The prominent BJP winners include Jayant Sinha, Sunil Soren , Nishikant Dubey, Bidyut Baran Mahato , Annpurna Devi, BJP's sitting MP Vishnu Dayal Ram, Sanjay Seth, Sunil Kumar Singh, Pashupati Nath Singh, Arjun Munda and Sudarshan Bhagat.

In Chhattisgarh, out of 11 seats BJP has won in 9 and Congress 2.

In Karnataka, BJP secured a landmark victory winning 25 seats out of 28 seats. The Congress, JDS and independent one each. Congress won from Bangalore rural and JDS has got the Hassan seat. Senior Congress leader Veerappa Moily,  has lost in Chikballapur while, former Prime Minister H.D. Devegowda lost from Tumkur. Senior Congress leader Mallikarjuna Kharge lost in Gulbarga.

In Andhra Pradesh, YSR Congress has clean sweeped, winning 21 out of 25 parliamentary seats. It is leading in Aruku where result is yet to be declared. Telugu Desam Party (TDP) has won 3 seats Guntur, Srikakulam and Vijaywada.

In Telangana, result has been declared for all the 17 seats. TRS has won 9 seats. BJP has won 4 seats. Congress has won 3 seats. AIMIM candidate Asaduddin Owaisi has won from Hyderabad.

In Kerala, results have been declared for all 20 seats. The Congress led UDF got comfortable victory with Congress won 15 seats. Congress President Rahul Gandhi has won from Wayanad constituency by securing a margin of over 4 lakhs 31 thousand votes over CPI candidate P.P.Suneer. IUML has won 2 seats. Kerala Congress(M), RSP and CPM have won in one seat each.  

UDF candidate in Thiruvananthapuram Shashi Tharoor has won over ninty nine thousand votes defeating NDAs Kummanam Rajashekaran. Union Minister Alphons Kannanthanam lost in Ernakulam.

In Assam, all the 14 results have been declared. BJP has won nine seats and Congress three. All India United Democratic Front and an Independent have bagged one each.

In Arunachal Pradesh, BJP has bagged Arunachal East seat. Party candidate and Union Minister Kiren Rijiju is leading in Arunachal West by margin of over one lakh 57 thousand votes.

In Manipur, BJP candidate Dr. Rajkumar Ranjan Singh has won from Inner Manipur Lok Sabha seat while Naga People’s Front candidate Lorho S.P foze has won Outer Manipur seat.

In Meghalaya, Congress candidate Vincent H. Pala has won by a margin of 1,52,000 votes. Agatha K. Sangma of National People's Party has defeated Mukul Sangma of Congress by margin more than 64 thousand votes.

In Mizoram constituency, C Lalrosanga of Mizo National Front  has won by margin of more than 8,000 votes. He defeated Independent candidate Lalnghinglova Hmar.

In Nagaland, the lone Lok Sabha seat has been bagged by Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party candidate Tokheho Yepthomi defeating Congress candidate K L Chishi by more than 16300 votes.

Sikkim Krantikari Morcha candidate, Indra Hang Subba has bagged the lone seat of the state.

In Tripura, BJP has won both the parliamentary seats.

And Daman & Diu seat has gone in favour of Lalubhai Babubhai Patel of BJP.  In Puducherry, Congress candidate V.Vaithilingam has won the lone Lok Sabha seat.


All the results of the Sikkim Assembly elections have been declared. Counting of votes in Arunachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Tamil Nadu by poll is still underway. 

In 175-member Andhra Pradesh Assembly, YSR Congress has secured landslide victory with winning in 150 seats and  is leading in One. TDP has won 22 and leading in 1 so far.

In Odisha Assembly, the BJD has won 108 seats and is leading in 4. BJP has bagged 23 seats. Congress secured 9 seats. CPI(M) and Independent have won one seat each.

Sikkim Krantikari Morcha has got majority in the 32 member Sikkim Assembly by winning 17 seats followed by SDF with 15. Chief Minister Pawan Chamling has won both the seats of Poklok Kamrang and Namchi Singhithang.

In Aunachal Pradesh, the BJP has secured 34 seats in 60-member Assembly while it is leading in 2. The winner includes Chief Minister Pema Khandu. BJP has retained Tuting- Yingkiong Seat. While JDU has bagged 7 seats. Congress could managed 4.


The Union Cabinet will meet this evening to recommend dissolution of the 16th Lok Sabha. The meeting is being held a day after the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance registered a landslide victory in the polls. After the Cabinet's recommendation is passed in the form of a resolution, President Ram Nath Kovind will dissolve the present Lok Sabha. The term of the 16th Lok Sabha will end on the 3rd of June. The 17th Lok Sabha has to be constituted before that date. The process to form a new House will be initiated when the Chief Election Commissioner along with Election Commissioners meets the President in the next few days to hand over the list of newly-elected members.

Official sources said, after the meeting of the Union Cabinet, the Council of Ministers, which also comprises Ministers of State will meet at the office of the Prime Minister.


The Congress has convened a meeting of the Congress Working Committee in New Delhi tomorrow. Sources said, at the meeting, top Congress leaders will deliberate on the reasons of the party's loss in Lok Sabha elections and assess them. Party President Rahul Gandhi, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh are expected to attend the meeting.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah met senior party leaders LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi at their residences in New Delhi today. In a tweet, Mr Modi said, BJP's successes today are possible because greats like Mr Advani spent decades building the party and providing a fresh ideological narrative to the people.


In Jammu and Kashmir, Zakir Musa, the so-called chief of Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind, a group affiliated with Al-Qaeda, was killed in an encounter with security forces in Pulwama district last night. The slain terrorist was identified as Zakir Musa after the body was recovered this morning. Talking to AIR News, State Director General of Police, Dilbagh Singh said, arms and ammunition were recovered from the encounter site, adding that the operation has been called off.


Four new judges of the Supreme Court were today administered the oath of office by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi. Justices BR Gavai, Surya Kant, Aniruddha Bose and AS Bopanna were administered oath of office in the presence of several other sitting apex court judges.

With the swearing-in, the number of judges in the Supreme Court stands at 31, the full sanctioned strength of the top court.


In Boxing, six-time world champion MC Mary Kom will fight for the Gold medal at the second edition of the India Open International Tournament at Guwahati in Assam this afternoon. In the 51 kg Final, Mary Kom will take on Vanlal Duati of Mizoram. The veteran Manipuri boxer had won a Bronze in the 48 kg category at the 2012 London Olympics. 48 kg division is now no longer there in the Olympic Games, which is why she is competing in the higher 51 kg ahead of next year's Tokyo Games. More from our correspondent:

"30 Indian boxers are vying for the Gold today in 18 categories. All eyes would be in women’s 51 kg category where poster girl of Indian boxing Mary Kom will take on compatriot Vanlal Duati. Local pugilists Shiva Thapa, Ankushita Boro, Bhagyabati Kachari, Lovlina Borgohain and Jamuna Boro would also play their final bouts today in front of the home crowd. In men’s 91 kg, Sumit Sangwan will take on Naman Tanwar in an all exciting encounter. MANAS PRATIM SARMA, AIR NEWS, GUWAHATI."


In Cricket, India will take on New Zealand in their opening warm-up game of the ICC World Cup in London tomorrow. The match will begin at 3 pm (Indian Standard Time).

The Men in Blue, second behind England in the ODI rankings, will start the tournament among the favourites alongside the hosts and defending champions Australia.

Team India, which had won the tournament in 1983 and 2011, will begin their campaign in tournament proper against South Africa in Southampton on the 5th of next month.

The opening game will be played between England and South Africa in London on the 30th of this month.


At the stock markets, the Sensex at the Bombay Stock Exchange surged by almost 600 points in afternoon trade, a short while ago. The 30-share index was trading 584 points up at 39,396. It rallied over 400 points in opening trade today, a day after BJP-led NDA won an absolute majority in Lok Sabha elections.

The Nifty at the National Stock Exchange spurted 167 points to 11,824.

At the foreign exchange market, the rupee appreciated by 21 paise to 69 rupees 81 paise against the dollar in opening trade.


India has stopped importing oil from Iran after American waivers granted to eight buyers expired early this month. This was stated by Indian Ambassador to the US Harsh Vardhan Shringla at a news conference in Washington. He said, New Delhi understands that the move was a priority for the US, although it comes at a cost as India really needs to find alternative sources of energy. Mr Shringla also said, India depends heavily on West Asia for its energy needs and is against any further escalation of tension in the region.

The Indian envoy added that he was confident that US sanctions would not affect its partnership in developing Iran's Chabahar port. He said, the Chabahar port is a lifeline for Afghanistan that provides both humanitarian assistance and supplies to the war-torn country.


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