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The world's largest democratic election

April 24th, 2014
09:29 AM ET

The man who may be India's next prime minister, Narendra Modi, is insisting he wants to be a leader for all Indians, not just the Hindu majority.

The latest reassurances come amid concern over his ties to Hindu nationalists, and anti-Muslim comments made by some in the group over the past few days.

But despite these concerns, the election momentum is still in Modi's favor.

His track record on the economy as chief minister of Gujarat is appealing to many in India who may be tiring of the ruling congress party, slow growth and high inflation.

India's big business looks to be backing Modi too, over Congress Party candidate Rahul Gandhi.

Voting in the world's largest democratic election is now in its third week.

A whopping 814 million people are eligible to vote – more than the population of the U.S. and Western Europe combined!

Jayati Ghosh is an Indian economist who is deeply troubled by the role of media and money in this election.

She spoke with CNN’s Paula Newton, in for Christiane Amanpour, on Wednesday.

Click above to watch.

Filed under:  India • Latest Episode
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. Tushar

    This was a very very one sided opinion by Jayati Ghosh. This is the only party who has agendas and points in their manifesto which actually talks about rebuilding india's collapsing economy.
    She needs to read this specially as a economist!

    April 24, 2014 at 10:54 am | Reply
  2. santosh

    5:30-5:32 a blatant lie by ms jayant ghosh...1)workers movement have never been suppressed in Gujrat...

    April 24, 2014 at 12:26 pm | Reply
  3. santosh

    2)workers in gujrat receive the best payments in India...
    3)No social group has never been attacked or persecuted..Some of them have even won U.N award.....

    April 24, 2014 at 12:29 pm | Reply
  4. Amol P

    The lady is lying.

    April 24, 2014 at 1:25 pm | Reply
  5. ssn

    It appears that she is a congress(opposition party) spoke person. Independent media like CNN should not bring such person's opinion..

    April 24, 2014 at 2:44 pm | Reply
  6. kansassan

    Sorry mrs are drunk!!! Just look at the comments will tell you what is wrong with you. You are claiming that the Modi wave is created by Media. Please do post some proof...some videos from main Indian news channels which are praising Modi's work in Gujrath. I always have seen the verbal diarrhea as that of yours on the mainstream channels against Modi.

    April 24, 2014 at 4:05 pm | Reply
  7. Ravi

    I think, it ridiculous that it just media creation. Hope if you see results after election might be you guys knows what going on. By the way this is one sided story per Mrs Ghose. All the best!!!

    April 24, 2014 at 7:26 pm | Reply
  8. Amrithraj

    She is definitely a congress spokesperson...

    April 24, 2014 at 9:33 pm | Reply
  9. Shanti

    Gujarat is no heaven as many are trying to show, it is far from it....there are many other states in India more developed and developing compared to Gujarat, with better,more balanced and secular Cheif Ministers.

    April 24, 2014 at 10:52 pm | Reply
  10. Varun

    CNN indeed had interview with a certain economist who gave her views on India and narendramodi , problem being the idea of of being a terrorists of sorts who was reckoned to destroy India gave a very delusional views of hers with a very high bias towards a certain party ..Being business friendly politcian could also be a interpretation over his corporate handlings.. Reason for this comment is specifically to able tell that ,journalists play important role in India over influencing minds ,sadly perspectives must be given on both parties, none are saints especially in Indian politics ,prejudice must be set aside when reported

    April 25, 2014 at 7:36 am | Reply
  11. sunny

    I believe Jayati Ghosh has a prejudicial opinion. As an example, she mentions about minorities not getting a rental property in metro cities. This happens as of today and not a premonition that BJP government would bring such cases.
    The wave is not entirely because of media but the rising disappointment from the current government's inefficiency and corruption.
    Misinformed people like Ms. Gosh are the result of negative emotions with regards to an individual. If she ever read BJP manifesto she will understand jobs are created by so called capitalist and not by giving subsidies to certain minorities and giving away free food to them. Teach a person how to fish rather than giving him the fish.
    I am deeply disappointed by such so-called-economist who do not understand the basics of economy which even a common man like me can understand.

    April 25, 2014 at 2:31 pm | Reply
  12. malamappilai

    Narendra modi represents a party which got inspired by Hitler. His guru wrote: ""to keep up the purity of the Race and its culture, Germany shocked the world by her purging the country of the semitic Races — the Jews. Race pride at its highest has been manifested here. Germany has also shown how well nigh impossible it is for Races and cultures, having differences going to the root, to be assimilated into one united whole, a good lesson for us in Hindusthan to learn and profit by.".We all saw how narendra modi applied his guruji's theories during gujrat massacres. This fascist organization is behind deaths many christian misionary workers in india. Hitler too claimed economic success to his credit but that will not turn a devil an angel

    April 25, 2014 at 6:46 pm | Reply
    • kansassan

      Really? Ohh..wait a must be the Christian convert who is disgrace to Christianity...I know this because there is not a single case against RSS for attacks on Christians. But your missionary masters instigate you by telling lies...Go in your hole and keep worshiping statue of mother Merry and Jesus...

      April 25, 2014 at 7:34 pm | Reply
      • malamappilai

        After Australian missionary Graham Staines and his two children was burnt to death by Indian fascists, the US-based Human Rights Watch accused the then Indian Government of failing to prevent violence against Christians, and of exploiting sectarian tensions for political ends. The organisation said attacks against Christians increased "significantly" since the "Hindu Nationalist" BJP came to power. Remember, that previous BJP government was headed by more moderate Atal Behari Vajpayee, but this time it will be a catastrophe for India and its secularism if Modi become Prime Minister who was denied Visa by US administration for his involvement in Gujrat Massacre..!.

        April 26, 2014 at 2:20 am |
    • Kansassan

      Really.. graham staines...that is the best you can do? FYI the person who killed him..Dara found to have no connection with RSS or Its subunits even after repeated attempt of ruling congress to fake his connections with these the whole justice Wadhwa closure report..also read how congress got angry on Wadhwa for not being able to bring in RSS falsely into the case. Wadhwa refused to give up to the pressure and stand by the truth..that is where the case stands today!! Graham staines got killed by his misdeed..under the garb of leprosy mission he was brainwashing poor tribals against Hindus and hinduism and converting them to christianity..

      April 26, 2014 at 7:05 am | Reply
  13. Shanti

    Not a single case of attacks on Christians and churches....pls go to the BJP-rules states and ask the Christians. Pls don't bluff here......everyone knows who are attacking the Christians and where. God forbid a BJP govt. at the center led by hardliners like Modi comes to power at the center....nothing can be worse for the country.

    April 26, 2014 at 2:35 am | Reply
    • Kansassan

      Banning forced conversions or money for conversion into religion is not similar to attack!!! I wish you could see what Attack is..just google news from Nairobi or poor African countries.BJP ruled states have banned conversion..there is one NGO for every 600 people in you think these NGOs will keep silent if Christians are attacked for no reason..grow up girl.. why r u spreading that what your missionaries tell you?

      I know I am wasting time converts could not understand hinduism and now can not understand christianity,.

      April 26, 2014 at 6:46 am | Reply
    • Kansassan

      I hope your mind will give you sleepless nights after seeing Modi in Power and every thing going fine just the way religious freedom is in the congress rule . If you still get good night sleep, then It will prove that you are the one who is bluffing here..make that resolution for this year and reply me back by the end of the year...I am interested to see how good a human being you are!!!

      April 26, 2014 at 7:27 am | Reply
  14. Nikhil

    Who is this woman? Leading economist? Never heard off her. Seemed like a congress/ socialist plant. Maybe CNN should do their research on relevant people or ask their sister network in India

    April 26, 2014 at 6:11 am | Reply
  15. Nikhil

    It is funny though. We all who live in India know that NaMo has already won. While exit polls of the 300/543 seats are not public, it is obvious by how the discourse is changing and how Congress is behaving. The discourse in media is also changing to what Modi will do when he comes to power Vs if he will come to power. Congress hasn't been able to swing anyone in India so they are making desperate attempts in international media by positioning so called left leaning "intellectualls". Not sure how it will help...

    April 26, 2014 at 6:26 am | Reply
  16. Kansassan

    Really.. graham staines...that is the best you can do? FYI the person who killed him..Dara found to have no connection with RSS or Its subunits even after repeated attempt of ruling congress to fake his connections with these the whole justice Wadhwa closure report..also read how congress got angry on Wadhwa for not being able to bring in RSS falsely into the case. Wadhwa refused to give up to the pressure and stand by the truth..that is where the case stands today!! Graham staines got killed by his misdeed..under the garb of leprosy mission he was brainwashing poor tribals against Hindus and hinduism and converting them to christianity..

    April 26, 2014 at 7:04 am | Reply
    • malamappilai

      You are saying "Graham killed for his misdeed". It means your fascist ideology has not changed a bit and a mad killer can get enough inspiration from this sort of statements to carry out similar attacks. RSS is a secretive organization which boast of not leaving hard evidence for their internal communication (communication is through personal messengers only). That is one of the reason they mostly escape court verdicts.

      By the way, why are you so worried about free speech? You are not confident about either your religion or its nominal followers. So you are afraid that if well informed, these ordinary people may run away from Hinduism.

      April 26, 2014 at 8:31 am | Reply
  17. popseal

    Democratic process is only as good as the ethics of the voters. America now has 47% of an electorate that is on government dependency and therefore votes for a living, rather than according to principle. See any large city that has been governed for more than three consecutive terms and we find the consequences of immoral voters casting their ballot. Inmates don't get to elect a warden.

    April 26, 2014 at 7:17 pm | Reply
    • popseal

      correction..."three consecutive terms by Democrats"

      April 26, 2014 at 7:19 pm | Reply
  18. Shanti

    Whom are you trying to fool by saying forced conversions happen for money? We're all reasonably educated and economically independant people who converted and follow Christianity because of the teachings of Jesus Christ, which arefull of love and truth (atleast 99% of the Christians convert of their own will). You people do forced reconversions.

    April 28, 2014 at 1:17 am | Reply
  19. roger raizada

    i have great respect for CNN and amanpour but i am very disappointed with almost all the news across the world,no one is reporting or may be do not want to know about Indian India arvind kejriwal trying to change the politics we dont need big wealthy rich and cooperate company to run the countries or control the media ...if you are fair and balance please report Indian election and the new wave to wipe corruption of capitalism

    April 28, 2014 at 7:23 pm | Reply
  20. Manish Ahluwalia

    I think this interview should have been broadcast with a disclosure. Ms Ghosh is a professional rewarded by the present ruling party's government as a member to many committees and commissions. Her husband is a member of the Planning Commission of India, again appointed by the present government and obviously therefore will not speak unbiased on political situations in India. The bias is visible. She thinks the whole of Corporate world, Media and Voters all are corrupt or corruptible and she is not.

    May 1, 2014 at 11:08 am | Reply
  21. Dr.Gopinath

    Modi has time and again been cleared by the courts in India of any involvement in the riots, which, incidentally, were started by the burning alive of Hindu pilgrims in a train. We in India need a strong leader with a firm hand to guide us out of the sorry spectacle that India has become under Congress rule. We don't give a hoot whether the Western world approves of Modi or not. He is the Man of the Hour and India needs him. As regards wearing a Muslim cap, would a Muslim candidate for PM had there been one wear a Hindu religious symbol to convince Hindus of his affinity for them? !!

    May 7, 2014 at 7:35 pm | Reply

    Congress rule was of course pathetic with some attempts on social justice.I am eagerly looking forward to see whether Mr Modi is a man who is interested in only economic growth with no social welfare programme .If that will be the case,then the new government cannot last.Any democratically elected government should rule according to the wishes of 75 percent of our citizens have little basic amenities for a dignifies human life.What this government can do to better their lot is what i am
    waiting for.

    May 18, 2014 at 12:47 am | Reply
  23. VB

    Who is this lady, the economist talking on behalf of entire India ad expressing her completely biased personal views. Every word of her proved wrong. I have never seen or heard her name before. First of all CNN needs to have credible list of people who can speak and if they don't have, don't interview anyone with biased views who does not even known enough about India. Find some credible authority to speak on India, not outsiders. India is a complex society, wearing a red sari and speaking in English does not mean anything,
    Wow ,, what a world we are in,

    June 23, 2014 at 2:37 pm | Reply
  24. VB

    I cannot believe CNN has no credible resources in India to report on ground realities. How hypocritical ? Most article I see on India is baseless and biased. Too bad and feel sad for poor journalism.

    Looks like certain western media houses are interested in hearing what they want and they find westerners with no ground connection to bring them the news the big editors "like" to see . Height of pseudo journalism. What happened to FREEDOM OF SPEECH ?

    June 23, 2014 at 2:47 pm | Reply
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