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India's ruling party admits results look "very bleak"

India's ruling Congress party admitted Friday that early results looked "very bleak" and the party was facing a spell in opposition as preliminary figures showed the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party on track for a crushing victory.

NEW DELHI: India's ruling Congress party admitted Friday that early results looked "very bleak" and the party was facing a spell in opposition as preliminary figures showed the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party on track for a crushing victory.

"It seems very bleak at the moment," said party spokesman Abhishek Manu Singhvi, adding that early leads showed "a very negative picture".

"We've been in power for 10 years. Surely we can proudly sit in the opposition and play a role of a responsible opposition for the next time," he told the NDTV network.

Counting began Friday for the mammoth general election, with results later in the day expected to show a victory for the opposition BJP and Hindu nationalist leader Narendra Modi.

Postal ballots were the first to be tallied at the 989 counting centres nationwide, with electronic voting machines set to be analysed afterwards.

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