Karine Bates, Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Montreal and Director of CÉRIUM's India and South Asia Research Programme (PRIAS), is available to comment on the results of the Indian elections, which will terminate on Friday, May 16.

Due to the time difference, the results will be known on the night of Thursday, May 15 through Friday, May 16, Eastern time zone.

Key points:• Whenever India votes, the largest democratic exercise in history occurs: between April 7 and May 16, more than 800 million Indians will have voted, and their choices will affect 1.2 billion Indian citizens• This is a historic election for several reasons• Historic defeat predicted for the Congress Party and hence the Gandhi/Nehru dynasty• Ascension of the controversial Narendra Modi, leader of the BJP, a Hindu nationalist party, who, according to all predictions, will be the next President – whether it will be in a majority government (272 seats out of 543) or coalition remains to be seen• Particularly acrimonious campaign• Immense challenges including the economy (significant decrease in growth), youth (nearly one in two Indians under 27; lack of opportunities for youth), inequalities, communal and religious tensions, foreign policy, and the environment• More than 15% of the world's population lives in India; what happens there affects the whole planet.The media are invited to contact Ms. Bates directly by email [email protected] or by phone at 514-343-6813.

More resources:Karine Bates’ publications and media activities: http://www.cerium.ca/Bates-KarineCÉRIUM is organizing a summer school session on India co-directed by Karine Bates (UdeM) and Christophe Jaffrelot (Sc. Po Paris), from June 16 to 21, entitled "Inde et Asie du Sud : émergences et mutations" (http://www.cerium.ca/Inde-et-Asie-du-Sud-emergences-et,15296). Registration is open to the general public.

The University of Montreal is officially known as Université de Montréal

Register for reporter access to contact details