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What NDA allies want for backing Modi 3.0: Cabinet bargaining gathers steam amid BJP's narrow majority

With the BJP failing to secure a majority in the Lok Sabha, its NDA allies are reportedly flexing their muscles in negotiations for key ministries at the Centre.

What NDA allies want for backing Modi 3.0: Cabinet bargaining gathers steam amid BJP's narrow majority snt
First Published Jun 6, 2024, 12:34 PM IST

As the dust settles on India's recent Lok Sabha Elections 2024, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) finds itself in a position of needing to navigate the intricacies of coalition politics. With a tally of 240 seats in the Lok Sabha, the BJP falls short of the majority mark of 272, prompting intense negotiations with its allies in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA).

At the forefront of these negotiations are key NDA partners such as the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), Janata Dal United (JDU), and Janata Dal Secular (JDS), each vying for significant ministerial berths and policy commitments within the upcoming government.

The TDP, led by veteran politician N Chandrababu Naidu, has emerged as a formidable force with 16 Lok Sabha seats and a decisive victory in the Andhra Pradesh Assembly polls. Reports suggest that the TDP is leveraging its electoral strength to demand five ministerial positions, including a Minister of State post for Finance, along with the prestigious Lok Sabha Speaker's post. Additionally, the party is eyeing portfolios such as Roads, Panchayati Raj, Health, and Education.

Also read: Chandrababu Naidu, MK Stalin meet at Delhi airport after INDIA bloc, NDA meetings; See PHOTOS

Similarly, the JDU, led by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, is flexing its muscles with 12 MPs in the Lok Sabha. Reports quoting party sources indicate that the JDU expects two Cabinet berths and one Minister of State role, with a keen interest in securing the Railways Ministry. Furthermore, the party is said to be pushing for a Common Minimum Programme to delineate the shared agenda of the NDA coalition, with Nitish Kumar poised to spearhead the coordination committee for its implementation.

This committee, reminiscent of the one chaired by the late George Fernandes during the Atal Bihari Vajpayee era, may see Nitish Kumar as a suitable candidate, as per reports citing JDU sources.

Meanwhile, the JDS, under the leadership of HD Devegowda and HD Kumaraswamy, is advocating for a central ministerial role, leveraging its two parliamentary seats. With a focus on agricultural issues, the party is eyeing the Agriculture Ministry as a key portfolio.

In addition to these prominent allies, the BJP must also accommodate other coalition partners such as the Shiv Sena and the Lok Janshakti Party (LJP). The Shiv Sena, led by Eknath Shinde, secured seven seats in Maharashtra, while Chirag Paswan's LJP clinched five seats. The role of Pawan Kalyan's Jana Sena, which won two seats, remains uncertain in the coalition dynamics.

Furthermore, the fate of smaller allies like Apna Dal (Sonelal), led by Anupriya Patel, hangs in the balance as the BJP navigates the delicate task of distributing ministerial berths among its coalition partners.

As the BJP engages in intense negotiations to shore up support for its government, the Opposition bloc, comprising 232 seats, is also strategizing its next move. With the specter of coalition politics looming large, the coming days are poised to witness a flurry of diplomatic maneuvers and backroom deals as parties jostle for power and influence within the corridors of the central government.

Also read:'Will work towards Viksit Bharat': PM Modi assures to serve 140 cr people of India after NDA elects him leader

On the other hand, the INDIA Opposition bloc, with 232 seats, held high-level discussions in Delhi on Wednesday to chart their path forward.

"The constituents of the INDIA bloc thank the people of India for the overwhelming support received by our alliance. The people's mandate has given a befitting reply to the BJP and their politics of hate and corruption. This is a mandate in defence of the Constitution of India and against price rise, unemployment and crony capitalism and also to save democracy. The INDIA bloc will continue to fight against the fascist rule of the BJP led by Modi," Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge said in his media address.

"We will take appropriate steps at the appropriate time to realise the people's desire not to be ruled by BJP's government. This is our decision and we altogether agreed on these points and we will keep up with the promises we have made to the people," he added.

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