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The Indian parliamentary elections in April and May were the largest exercise of democratic rights in history. Some 438 million of India’s 714 million electorate voted. The left-wing communists who were part of the coalition government in the parliament for nearly four of the previous five years were nearly wiped out. The right-wing coalition also lost substantial ground. The Congress Party, with its coalition partners, received a clear mandate to form a government and continue the process of modernizing and developing India. Industry was elated. The Bombay Stock Exchange index (SENSEX) soared by 2,111 points, from 12,173 to 14,284.

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