What will be the strategy of regional parties post Lok Sabha polls?

Regional parties will hold the keys of govt. formation at the center. What will they do? Who will they support – BJP led NDA or Congress led UPA? This is analyzed in detail below. The assumption here is that there will be either a NDA or a UPA govt. at the center.

(i) Samajwadi Party:

Support NDA – Never

Support UPA – Yes, It already provides outside support to current UPA govt. Might even join govt. if able to snatch a good deal.

(ii) Bahujan Samaj Party:

Support NDA – Yes, probability low. It has formed govt. in Uttar Pradesh with BJP in the past. Relationship soured after that. A good deal, specifically, some ministries and CBI case related to Taj Corridor etc. could lead it to support NDA.

Support UPA – Yes, probability high. It already provides outside support to current UPA govt. Might even join govt. if able to snatch a good deal.

(iii) Janata Dal (United):

Support NDA – No

Support UPA – Yes. It could provide outside support. Might even join govt. if able to get a good deal (special status for Bihar).

Party might also split and a section led by Sharad Yadav could support NDA.

(iv) Left Front:

Support NDA – Never

Support UPA – Yes. It could provide outside support to UPA govt. in name of preventing communal forces (NDA) from coming to power. It did provide such support to UPA I before nuclear deal.

(v) Biju Janata Dal:

Support NDA – Yes. It was part of NDA govt. during 1998-2004. Even in Orissa both BJP and BJD were allies in govt.

Support UPA – Never, as Congress is its biggest opposition party in Orissa.

(vi) AIADMK:

Support NDA – Yes. Amma has good equations with Modi which will help.

Support UPA – Yes if Congress dumps DMK.

So she could go either ways.

(vii) YSR Congress:

Support NDA – Yes. Will have no other choice, than to be in good books, to get some reprieve from CBI. Some ministries will help.

Support UPA – Despite lot of animosity with Congress, could still support it by striking a deal wrt CBI cases.

He will go with whoever forms government.

(viii) Rashtriya Janata Dal:

Support NDA – Never.

Support UPA – Yes. Lalu and Paswan were ministers in UPA I, supporting govt. from outside in UPA II. Lalu desperate to become minister already in talks for pre-poll alliance.

(ix) Trinamool Congress:

Support NDA – Yes. Was part of NDA govt. during 1998-2004.

Support UPA – No. Was part of govt. in UPA I and UPA II till very recently. It will not be with Left Front in same govt. and Left expected to support Congress.

(x) Telugu Desam Party

Support NDA – Yes. Was part of NDA govt. during 1998-2004.

Support UPA – Never, as Congress is its principal opposition party in the state of Andhra Pradesh.

(xi) Telangana Rashtriya Samiti

Support NDA – Yes. Was part of NDA govt. during 1998-2004.

Support UPA – Yes, if it creates Telangana. Congress would try to force TRS to merge if Telangana is created, but Rao will resist to keep his options open.

Rao could go either ways.

(xii) Aam Aadmi Party 

Support NDA – Never.

Support UPA – Yes, to hold onto its govt. at Delhi. Ideologically it is close to Congress.

Further, we analyse whether parties with NDA and UPA can switch sides. Shiv Sena and Akali Dal are with NDA and they can never switch to Congress.

Parties like Jharkhand Mukti Morcha and National Conference can’t ditch Congress and go to NDA as their state govt. are dependent upon Congress support. JMM can still switch boats as its govt. could still survive with support of BJP. Pawar’s NCP will also find it difficult to switch alliance as it is running a joint govt. with Congress in Maharashtra. Plus Shiv Sena won’t allow it to join NDA. However, outside support not ruled out. Ajit Singh of Rashtriya Lok Dal is a habitual hopper and can support NDA (provided he wins any seats this time).

While it is acknowledged that CBI is being brought under Lokpal, whoever comes to power may not be in a position to give repreive wrt CBI cases. But people who join will not come for free. They will need some candies. While full reprieve from CBI cases may not be possible, but govt. can always instruct CBI to go slow in these cases.


10 thoughts on “What will be the strategy of regional parties post Lok Sabha polls?

    1. No.

      In 2011 Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly election, Ms. JJ formed grand alliance with 6 registered parties – 1. DMDK, 2. CPI, 3. CPI(M), 4. MMK, 5. Puthiya Tamilakam and 6. All India Forward Block and 4 unregistered parities whose candidates ran under the AIADMK ticket – 1. All India Samathuva Makkal Katchi, 2. Republican Party of India, 3. All India Moovendar Munnani Kazhagam, 4. Tamilnadu Kongu Ilaignar Peravai.

      In October 2011, the Left parties were stunned by the AIADMK’s decision to face the local body polls on its own, as it came merely months after they successfully faced the Assembly elections in partnership. CPI(M) state secretary G Ramakrishnan, who had then charged her with betrayal.

      Post 2011 elections, DMDK left AIADMK alliance.

      It means that in October 2011 the AIADMK lead grand alliance was dissolved.

      Other registered parties like MDMK and PMK is now in seat sharing discussion with BJP.

      AIADMK wants to keep away from INC at least till elections in May 2014.

      Now Ms. JJ is left alone with smaller parties and unregistered parties. Ms. JJ is not counting on these smaller parties whose vote share is very feeble.

      At least for a “name saver” Ms. JJ & AIADMK desperately looking for a party that is none other than CPI and CPM

      The first round of discussion between CPI+CPI(M) and AIADMK on 05th Feb 2014 concluded that 1 seat each for the left parties irrespective of the total demanded 10 seats. Finally the left is negotiating for 2 seats each which might be considered and granted by Ms. JJ.

      This itself is an indicator for the importance of the left parties in the AIADMK alliance.

      So after May 2014, no one can predict Ms. JJ and as said in this article Ms. JJ led AIADMK may take any decision like in Oct 2011 to go either way.


  1. Interesting analysis. However, I would submit to you that we’ve reached a point where we no longer need to discuss the “UPA”. With there being virtually no chance of the Congress heading the next government, UPA would automatically cease to exist. The former non-Congress UPA constituents, NCP, NC and DMK have all made strategic statements suggesting that Modi may not be untouchable after all, if he gets the numbers. So the Congress is simply going to be the largest non-BJP party. I agree that Jayalalithaa, Mamata and Mayawati look like they will be kingmakers, since they can go with Modi or with a non-Modi formation, whichever offers them brighter prospects. However, if the BJP does as well as some polls have suggested, winning 210-215 seats (very optimistic but entirely within the realm of possibility), there is a chance that these three regional satraps might find themselves out in the cold. Here’s my latest analysis:



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