The reverberations of the Bharatiya Janata Party's humiliating defeat at the hands of the JD (U)-RJD-Congress Grand Alliance in Bihar was evidently felt across the world, with foreign media calling out Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'cow politics'.
Seen as a referendum of the Modi wave that swept the Lok Sabha polls last year, the Bihar election results came in the midst of growing concerns among sections of the society against what they refer to as "intolerance."
"Those appeals — in which Mr. Modi depicted his opponents as favoring Muslims and insulting cows, a revered Hindu holy symbol — fell flat in Bihar," The New York Times reported.
Pakistan's newspaper Dawn was more scathing in its reportage of the BJP debacle.
"Prime Minister Narendra Modi's cow politics was put out to pasture on Sunday as the impoverished state of Bihar gave a resounding verdict against the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) campaign to pit Hindus against Muslims over beef eating," a report, cheekily titled 'Bihar steals Modi's firecrackers' on Dawn.com said.
One of the main reasons why PM Modi has become the target over BJP's loss in Bihar is his blitzkrieg of aggressive campaigning in the state during which he addressed 30 rallies, often mocking and attacking rivals Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad Yadav.
Modi had attacked Yadav over the latter's remarks on beef, which has become the focal issue of the day.
"The defeat in Bihar may indicate that the BJP strategy of simultaneously stressing both development at a national level and using more sectarian rhetoric at a local level may be becoming less effective," The Guardian reported.
Another reason is that the Bihar verdict comes at the peak of an unprecedented movement by writers, historians, filmmakers and even scientists against the Modi government's inability to check "intolerance" and "threats to freedom of speech."
Finally, the "Modi magic" itself seems to have faded from last year, and the rousing speeches that won him huge popularity last year may not be working now, foreign media reported.
"The results make it clear that Mr Modi's vote-catching abilities are on the wane and voters are already holding him to the promises he made to them last year," the BBC said.