US media sees stability and better India-US ties in poll verdict

May 17th, 2009 - 12:07 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh By Arun Kumar
Washington, May 17 (IANS) The US media greeted the return of the Congress-led coalition in India as heralding stability in the world’s most populous nation and a vindication of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s efforts to deepen a strategic partnership with the United States.

The coalition scored a “surprisingly decisive victory”, “vaulting Manmohan Singh, a soft-spoken economic reformer, to a second term as prime minister, and sweeping away the prospect of political instability in the world’s most populous democracy,” the New York Times said in a report from New Delhi.

“The Congress Party’s showing vindicates the prime minister’s efforts to deepen a strategic partnership with the United States at a time when the Obama administration is deeply concerned about security in the region, chiefly in Pakistan and Afghanistan,” it said.

“A stronger government will also be better able to tackle issues of crucial importance to Washington, from economic reforms to climate change, although there is not necessarily agreement with the Americans on how to proceed,” the influential daily said.

Writing under the headline, “Voters Tell India’s Ruling Party to Persevere”, the Washington Post noted: “India’s neighbours are in turmoil, and its young population is increasingly restive with expectations of prosperity despite a global economic crisis.”

“With that in mind, voters sent their government a clear mandate: Stay the course,” it said noting that the Congress victory “defying analysts’ predictions” would make Manmohan Singh the country’s first full-term prime minister in nearly 40 years to be voted back into power.

“It was a spectacular win for the party linked to one of the country’s founding fathers, Jawaharlal Nehru, patriarch of the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty that has typically dominated politics since independence in 1947,” the Post said.

The Wall Street Journal said the prospect of a return of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance is likely to buoy investors.

“Having a stable government in India is a boon for the rest of the world, since the world’s second largest nation by population after China is being looked at as a possible driver of global economic growth once the global recession starts to fade,” it said.

“The strong showing should also reduce pressure on the government to roll back economic reforms and weaken the Indian-US nuclear agreement, a cornerstone of closer ties with Washington,” said the Los Angeles Times.

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