October 8, 1999 VNN4891 Comment on this story
Hindu Nationalists Take Over In India
FROM ASSOCIATED PRESS
INDIA, Oct 8 (VNN) Hindu Alliance Wins in India
By HEMA SHUKLA Associated Press Writer
NEW DELHI, India (AP) -- A 22-party alliance led by the Hindu nationalists won India's parliamentary elections, unofficial results showed today, giving the nation its first chance at a stable government in several years.
With winners declared for 536 seats, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's alliance had won 286 while the main Congress party and its allies trailed at 129. Congress, led by Italian-born Sonia Gandhi, suffered its worst showing ever, with a projected 113 of the 543 elected seats in the lower house of parliament.
..reacted with confidence to television projections showing Vajpayee's alliance would win at least 294 seats, a comfortable majority.
Bombay's Sensitive Index rose 5.64 percent and Moody's Investor Service upgraded India's rating from stable to positive, saying the new government is likely to pursue aggressive economic restructuring.
One of the new government's first tasks will be to restart efforts to forge a lasting peace with neighboring Pakistan.
Efforts at improving ties between the South Asian rivals were wrecked when Indian troops battled Pakistani-backed intruders in Kashmir in fierce fighting lasting from May to July.
Within weeks, the new government must reach crucial decisions on whether to sign a global treaty banning nuclear tests and formulate its own nuclear doctrines for its developing atomic arsenal. Foreign Minister Jaswant Singh told STAR television network the new government would quickly take up the issue of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.
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