NEW DELHI – India’s main opposition party has chosen controversial Hindu nationalist Narendra Modi as its prime ministerial candidate in parliamentary elections set for next year.
The choice of Modi, chief minister of the western state of Gujarat, was long expected but opposed by many even within his Bharatiya Janata Party. Several weeks of internal wrangling preceded Friday’s ceremonial announcement, at which the candidate was cheered and adorned with a garland of roses and jasmine.
Modi, 62, has won praise for turning Gujarat into an economic powerhouse and a magnet for foreign investment, but he comes with serious baggage, as many allege that he did little to stop riots in his state in 2002 when hundreds of Muslims were killed.
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