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Is the Politics of Coalitions over?

For almost 35 years, in India, the Loksabha elections showed the reign of coalition governments. This had become the norm. Also a party's political abilities and skills were put to test in party's ability of managing to woo regional parties to form coalition.

The long awaited 16th Loksabha election results show the dawn of Single Party Dominance. The BJP has broken the norm of coalition politics which had prevailed from 1989. Also it has crossed the magical figure of 272. The BJP has formed the majority government with Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister. The mandate has given him the turn to implement his thoughts and promises into actions. For this, he does not need to get into bargaining with regional leaders anymore.

The gradual downfall of coalition politics had started with Aam Admi Party winning the Delhi Assembly Elections. The party's first electoral test and it's spectacular victory had marked a new phase in Indian politics.

If we take a look at the states, in the Loksabha election, TMC won 34 out of 42 seats in West Bengal, AIADMK won 37 out of 39 seats in Tamil Nadu, BJD won the majority of the seats in Odisha. These also mark the diminishing effect of need of coalition to form government.

Many are of the opinion that forming coalitions unites many parties together which represent different regions of India. But the insecurity related to coalitions was made clear when TMC withdrew from coalitions with Congress. The Congress could survive then only due to the support of two other regional parties. This kind of deflection which occurs due to coalition politics threatens the existence of the government. And it can happen any moment if a party withdraws it's support.

Our ex-Prime minister Dr. Manmohan Singh was unable to implement many things out of the fear that the coalition partners might withdraw their support. With this kind of fear, it is tough for a government to implement it's thoughts. Due to all these reasons, a former Chief Justice of India condemned coalitions as a mark os the 'Degeneration of Democracy'.

A government formed with majority will provide stability to the country and will help in economic upgradation. This will surely be seen soon as BJP rule has seen great development in Gujarat, also BJP rule under Atal Bihari Vajpayee was of economic stability.

There was a discredit of BJP on being secular, but the election results show huge support of people to them. But it still remains a debatable issue among people whether BJP rule would hamper the cosmopolitan strand of Indian society.

Modi has started well. He is trying to enhance transparency in governmental affairs. This is a good sign. He is focusing on the foreign policies. Modi invited the SAARC leaders in his swearing ceremony. Pakistan's Prime Minister was also invited. Also discussions on strategic issues with China marks a good start.

But the show has just begun. The BJP needs to fulfil the commitments it made to the people before the elections. It also needs to put an end to the anti-secular tag attached to it's name.

But does all these indicate the end of the era of coalition politics? Well politics in India takes highly unpredictable turns. The BJP is yet short of majority in the Upper House and it needs the support of other parties to pass bills in Upper House. Also all credentials of a government are not about only economic developments , passing bills and making reforms but also on social implication. This will not only create an impression in the minds but also in the hearts of people and will decide the future of the party.

Now when the people have selected a majority government, it creates a huge pressure on the government to keep it's position and trust of the people. If they fail to do so, they cannot blame anyone and will be solely held responsible for it.

We hope that the Single Party Dominance will bring about betterment of rule. Because the real talent of a political party is in the actions it takes not in appeasing parties to form coalition. The support should be gained from the people, not from other parties. Other parties may support for their own interests, but a majority government will go by the saying "by the people , for the people".

-Anwesha Bandopadhyay