Narendra Modi who took oath as prime minister for his second term on May 2019 is set to become the longest serving non-Congress leader tooccupy the office. With 2,272 continuous days in office as of Friday, Modi will match the record held by the late Atal Bihari Vajpayee who served in office for 2,272 days across three separate terms. On Saturday, he will surpass it.
In May 2014, Modi was first elected PM when he led the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to a landslide victory in the Lok Sabha elections winning 282 seats in the Lower House. Five years later, he returned to power with an unprecedented 303 MPs.
Vajpayee who was first elected PM in 1996, was in office between May 16 and June 1, a tenure that lasted 13 days. His second stint came in 1998, when he was PM for 13 months between March 1998 and April 1999. This was followed by a five-year term between 1999 and 2004. While Vajpayee resigned on May 27, 1996, after his 13-day stint, and after delivering one of the best speeches Parliament has ever heard, his successor Deve Gowda was sworn in only on June 1. Technically, Vajpayee was the caretaker PM for those days, a fact some calculations of his tenure overlook.
Other than Vajpayee and Modi, PMs with long tenure include India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, who assumed office on August 15, 1947 stayed in the seat till May 27, 1964, a total of 6,130 days or almost 17 years. His daughter Indira Gandhi who first assumed office on January 24, 1966 continued till March 24, 1