Opposition candidate Narendra Modi declared the “good days are coming” after sweeping to power in historic elections in India.
Though the final results have yet to be confirmed, Mr Modi took to Twitter to declare victory for his Hindu Bharitya Janata Party (BJP).
He tweeted: “India has won. Good days are coming.”
Outgoing Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has called Mr Modito congratulate him.
India’s Election Commission says that for the first time in 30 years a party appears to have enough seats to form a majority government in what is the world’s second most populous country.
The BJP currently has 272 seats – meaning they won’t need to form a coalition in the lower house of parliament.
The result ends 10 years of Congress Party rule and follows what the BJP describe as a “people’s revolution”.
“This is the beginning of change, a people’s revolution and the start of a new era,” senior BJP leader Prakash Javadekar told AFP.
Sky’s Neville Lazarus is outside the BJP headquarters in New Delhi and described the celebrations as “euphoric”.
“They were expecting the number of seats to be high, but not this high,” he said. “It’s a vindication of Narendra Modi and his campaign.
“There is a mood of change in this country because the Congress Party has been reeling from the economic slowdown and corruption charges.”
MrModi has been the top official in Gujarat state for a decade.
The 63-year-old is the son of a tea seller and has played on his humble roots during the election campaign, with references to his mother riding a rickshaw to cast her ballot.
His apparent victory comes despite controversy over links to the paramilitary Hindu nationalist group Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) – which some describe as neo-fascist.
As chief minister of Gujarat, Mr Modi was criticised for failing to apologise for religious riots in 2002 in which at least 1,000 people died – mostly Muslims.
He has denied any role in the violence and the Supreme Court declared he had no case to answer.
However, suspicions prompted the United States to deny him a visa in 2005, while Britain maintained a diplomatic boycott on Mr Modi until 2012.
16 May 2014 | 9:59 am – Source: orange.co.uk