TV exit poll summary projects victory for Indian PM Modi in general election

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party-led alliance is projected to win a majority in the general election that concluded on Saturday, an exit poll summary by the NDTV news channel said.

The summary of two exit polls projected the ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA) could win more than 350 seats in the 543-member lower house of parliament, where 272 is needed for a simple majority.

The NDA won 353 in the 2019 election.

The opposition INDIA alliance led by the Congress party was projected to win more than 120 seats.

Exit polls have a patchy record in India as they have often got election outcomes wrong, with analysts saying it is a challenge to get them right in the large and diverse country.

Nearly one billion people were eligible to vote in the seven-phase election that began on April 19 and was held in scorching summer heat in many parts.

The Election Commission will count votes polled in electronic voting machines on June 4 and results are expected the same day.

A victory for Modi, 73, will make him only the second prime minister after independence leader Jawaharlal Nehru to win three consecutive terms.

(Reporting by YP Rajesh and Krishn Kaushik)