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Added by on 2014-05-19

India is taking a “calculated risk” with the election of Narendra Modi as prime minister, Indian business leader and public intellectual Gurcharan Das told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Monday. “It’s obviously a risk you take when you bring in a strong person. But I believe that India has enough constraints of a pugnacious press, a fiercely independent judicial system, and a disobedient people, that I think the chances of getting a dictator are diminished as a result of some of these.” Modi, leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party, claimed victory in a landslide election last Friday. He has drawn praise for the economic revitalization of Gujarat, his home state, but criticism over his Hindu nationalism and alleged role in anti-Muslim mob violence a decade ago, when he was chief minister of Gujarat. Das voted for Modi, but says the decision “took a lot of agonizing.” “I feel he’s grown. I hope he has grown. And I feel we are taking a risk, but it’s a calculated risk that the country is taking.”