© Chappatte dans Le Temps, Genève
India's opposition leader, Narendra Modi, will become the next prime minister of the world's largest democracy, winning the most decisive election victory the country has seen in three decades and sweeping the long-dominant Congress party from power. Modi, a career politician whose campaign promised a revival of economic growth, will have a strong mandate to govern at a time of profound changes in Indian society. Read more >>
In the cartoon by Chappatte from Le Temps, Geneva, Modi is portrayed as a snake charmer charming votes from the ballot box. Since snake charming is basically a trick (see below), the cartoonist could be making a point about Modi's landslide election victory, though this is not clear.
1. The practice of snake charming is most common in India, though other Asian nations such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Malaysia are also home to performers, as are the North African countries of Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia.
2. Although snakes are able to sense sound, they lack the outer ear that would enable them to hear the music. They follow the pungi, the instrument that the "snake charmer" holds, with their heads. The snake considers the person and pungi a threat and responds to it as if it were a predator.
3. The letters BJP on the poster behind Modi stand for Bharatiya Janata Party (= "Indian People's Party").