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“No matter what the voters of Bihar decide, the ramifications will be felt far beyond the state’s borders,” scholars Milan Vaishnav and Saksham Khosla from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, a top US think tank wrote in an op-ed yesterday.

The Bihar election, which begins on October 12 and concludes on November 8, will be the ‘biggest electoral test’ for the Modi-led BJP government thus far, they wrote.

If it prevails, this victory could provide the central government with new momentum. A win would bring BJP closer to a Rajya Sabha majority and boost its chances ahead of state elections in 2016 and 2017.

If it falls short, it would be a big blow, especially because Modi has associated his own reputation so closely with the campaign, even recently announcing a USD 19 billion (Rs 1.25 lakh crore) economic package for the state, the Carnegie scholars wrote.

View more: Bihar Election 2015

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