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Modi rolls out his populist plans with a second term in mind

Health insurance and farm subsidies take center stage

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi   © Reuters

NEW DELHI Nothing has underlined the challenge facing Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi better than the results of three key by-elections in the western state of Rajasthan on Feb. 1. His Bharatiya Janata Party lost two seats in the lower house of parliament and one in the state assembly to the opposition Congress party by big margins. This was in a state where the BJP had won all 25 parliamentary seats in the 2014 national election after a huge 163-21 defeat of Congress in December 2013 state polls.

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