13 April 2017
Hindu nationalists have reshaped Indian politics using the idea of cross-caste Hindu unity.

Indian politics is headed in a most challenging direction, one which could have momentous implications for the country's pluralistic society and the world. 

This sharp political turn in India has been most starkly visible in the growing political success of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), founded in 1980. 

In 2014, the BJP won a landslide electoral victory, bringing Prime Minister Narendra Modi to power. In March this year, the party swept to victory again in local elections across India, including in the country's most populous state, Uttar Pradesh, where the BJP won over three quarters of the seats on offer. 

The new chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath, has attributed the party's success to the prime minister's strongman image and popularity. Supporters of Modi point to his focus on economic development and growth to explain his popularity. India was the fastest-growing major economy last year, posting a GDP growth of 7 percent, compared to 6.8 percent for China. Critics, on the other hand, claim the so-called "Modi-wave" is based on an appeal to divisive Hindu majoritarian politics.    Click here to read the full article.