1. Narendra Modi is India’s 15th prime minister, winning the largest democratic election of all time, and securing the largest mandate any Indian prime minister has won since 1984.
He is succeeding Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of the Congress Party, who was in power for 10 years and was widely criticized for his inaction. Modi defeated his competitor Rahul Gandhi in a landslide election.
2. Narendra Modi is seen as pro-business and pro-development.
Modi has modeled himself as the “Development Man” and has been endorsed by some of the world’s richest Indian businessmen. He has attracted huge investments in his home state of Gujarat where the economy has grown 10% a year, higher than the Indian average, for much of the last decade.
Supporters credit him with improving infrastructure and governance, while detractors believe his pro-business agenda excludes poor minorities and ignores social problems.
3. Modi was denied a visa to the United States in 2005, but has been granted one since being elected Prime Minister.
The U.S. government has denied Modi a visa since nine years for his failure as a leader of the state of Gujarat to stop deadly communal riots which killed over 1,000 people, mainly Muslims.
While Modi’s recent meeting with U.S. Ambassador to India Nancy Powell was an indicator of restoring U.S.–India ties, top American officials remained silent on the issue of his visa.
On the day of his election, the White House said Modi “will be welcomed” into the United States. He is now eligible for an A1 visa, which heads of states use to travel into the United States.