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Modi Takes Oath for Third Term as India’s Prime Minister

A view of Mr. Modi’s third term unfolding through the Prime Ministers Museum in New Delhi. Observers note that Mr. Modi’s brand has brought added power to the office.

News Analysis

NEW DELHI–The Prime Ministers Museum in India’s capital saw a steady stream of visitors Sunday morning. The museum is a state of the art, high tech homage to the life, vision, and work of independent India’s 15 prime ministers since its independence, beginning with Jawaharlal Nehru and ending with Narendra Modi—first elected in 2014 and sworn in for a rare third term at India’s presidential palace on Sunday evening. The museum provides a lens through which to view the office of prime minister as Mr. Modi takes on the role once again.

The museum is housed in Teen Murti Bhavan, the one-time residence of Nehru. On Sunday, the crossroads facing the museum’s gate was decked with massive banners welcoming the seven heads of state who attended Mr. Modi’s swearing-in. The South Asian leaders were joined by 9,000 guests—a star-studded list including foreign dignitaries, celebrities, and corporate leaders—at the swearing-in, which took place just a few minutes away.

Outside, the historic Lutyens’ Delhi neighborhood—which houses the Indian parliament, the Rashtrapati Bhavan (the presidential palace), and other core government offices—was decked with massive banners congratulating the Indian public on electing Modi for a third term and hailing him as “the creator of Modern India.”

Inside the museum, the largely digitalized Narendra Modi pavilion talks about the “Modi Doctrine” and acquaints viewers with Mr. Modi’s policies in India’s neighborhood, his cultural diplomacy, his security impetus, his life and achievements. A special VR driven helicopter ride on the same floor—available with an add-on ticket—takes viewers on a 3D virtual tour of some of India’s most high profile projects, including massive, strategic infrastructure projects along the nation’s border.

Until Mr. Modi’s third swearing-in, Nehru was the only prime minister in Indian history to serve consecutive three terms. Now, Nehru’s party, the Indian National Congress (INC)—India’s oldest political party—leads INDIA, the opposition alliance against the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) led by Mr. Modi.

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