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  1. ITV Report

Largest general election in the world draws to a close as hundreds of millions vote in India

  • Video report by ITV News Asia Correspondent Debi Edward

Millions have already voted in the first phase of India's giant general election.

And millions are set to cast their votes on the last day of India's election - which will be the largest the world has ever seen - on May 19, which falls on Sunday.

Some 900 million people are eligible to help elect a new Government that will determine the future of the country for the next five years and votes will be counted on May 23.

Although few expect the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to lose Prime Minister Narendra Modi has faced tough competition from Rahul Gandhi, leader of the Indian National Congress.

ITV News joined the Congress party's secretary Priyanka Gandhi in Uttar Pradesh on the last day of campaigning in the Indian elections.

Priyanka Gandhi in Uttar Pradesh, India, for the last day of campaigning. Credit: ITV News

Ms Gandhi is part of the country's most famous political family - three of her relatives have served as Prime Minister.

She told ITV News the democracy that they had helped build is under threat from Modi: ''This election is an election in which we are fighting to save our democracy, to save our democratic institutions and every citizen must cast their vote very responsibly and think very deeply, because in this election, it's not just a question of which party we are voting for, it is a question of the very foundation of our country being disturbed.''

Since sweeping to power five years ago, Modi has projected a strongman image, calling himself the watchman of India.

He chose today to call his first ever press conference, and used it not to take questions, but to set out his ambitions for a second term.

He told those who had gathered: ''As soon as possible, we will form a new Government and move forward making one decision after another.''

Modi's own constituency, Varamasi, will be one of the last to vote on Sunday.

It is here that his nationalist politics have taken hold. and where his party is most confident of victory.

And it is for this reason that until the very last vote is cast this weekend, everything is up in the air.