Sunday, March 29, 2009

Soja Re, and save 10000 Crore Rupees

Sand opined on Rat's blog.

Considering the recession and the job losses, govt of India should skip this year's election and continue status-quo for the next 5 years. Even if the election happens (spending around 10K Crore I heard from somewhere), the same parties will get almost the same number of seats. So, what's the point? Instead of election, parties should be given an opportunity to re-align.. Like Jayalalitha to support congress, Left to support BJP, Shivsena to support congress. RJD & SP to merge. (All the post election dramas which happen every 5 years) Then a new govt will be formed with new political equations and govt saves 10K Crore from treasury.

I haven’t heard a better proposition about Indian politics in the recent times. Makes perfect sense to me.

These politicians have been looting our nation for decades, in the name of democracy. They align with communal forces, choose candidates based on cast equations, give tickets to vested interests and outright criminals, support religious extremists to influence vote banks, align with arch rivals to form coalitions, change allegiance and alliances as often as changing clothes .... in general do anything to get into power. So why bother to spend almost 10000 crore rupees to reelect them?

Here is the party wise list of members of the fourteenth (current) Lok Sabha. Once the elections are over, I will put another post to compare the party wise list to see if there is any change in these equations because of our once in five year circus.

S.No.Name of PartyMember     Leader
1Indian National Congress(INC)150Shri Pranab Mukherjee
2Bharatiya Janata Party(BJP)112Shri L.K. Advani
3Communist Party of India (Marxist)(CPI(M))42Shri Basudeb Acharia
4Samajwadi Party(SP)32Prof. Ram Gopal Yadav
5Rashtriya Janata Dal(RJD)24Shri Lalu Prasad
6Bahujan Samaj Party(BSP)16Shri Rajesh Verma
7Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam(DMK)16Shri C. Kuppusami
8Shiv Sena(SS)12Shri Anant Geete
9Nationalist Congress Party(NCP)11-
10Biju Janata Dal(BJD)10Shri Braja Kishore Tripathy
11Communist Party of India(CPI)10Shri Gurudas Dasgupta
12Shiromani Akali Dal(SAD)8Shri Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa
14Pattali Makkal Katchi(PMK)6Prof. M. Ramadass
15Jharkhand Mukti Morcha(JMM)5Shri Shibu Soren
16Lok Jan Shakti Party(LJSP)4Shri Ram Vilas Paswan
17Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam(MDMK)4Shri L. Ganesan
18Telugu Desam Party(TDP)4Shri K. Yerrannaidu
19All India Forward Bloc(AIFB)3-
20Rashtriya Lok Dal(RLD)3.
21Revolutionary Socialist Party(RSP)3Shri Joachim Baxla
22Telangana Rashtra Samithi(TRS)3Shri Kalva Kuntla Chandrasekhar
23Asom Gana Parishad(AGP)2Dr. Arun Kumar Sarma
24Janata Dal (Secular)(S))2Shri M.P. Veerendra Kumar
25Kerala Congress(KEC)2Shri P.C. Thomas
26All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimmen(AIMIM)1Shri Asaduddin Owaisi
27All India Trinamool Congress(AITC)1Km. Mamata Banerjee
28Bharatiya Navshakti Party(BNP)1Shri Delkar Mohanbhai Sanjibhai
29Jammu and Kashmir National Conference(J&KNC)1.
30Janata Dal (United)(U))1-
31Mizo National Front(MNF)1Shri Vanlalzawma
32Muslim League Kerala State Committee(MLKSC)1Shri E. Ahmed
33Nagaland Peoples Front(NPF)1Shri W. Wangyuh
34National Loktantrik Party(NLP)1Shri Baleshwar Yadav
35Republican Party of India(A)(RPI(A)) 1Shri Athawale Ramdas Bandu
36Sikkim Democratic Front(SDF)1Shri Nakul Das Rai

Total - 501, Vacant seats - 46

There are precisely 11 parties which managed to get 10 or more people elected to the parliament. And these are the ones who decide our future.

Lets just examine the history of our major alliances and the way parties move in and out of these coalitions. How many of these movements are based on or inspired by ideology? What about parties which temporarily move away and then come back to the same alliance?

The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) is a coalition of political parties in India.
Had 13 constituent parties at the time of its formation in 1998.
Formed the Government in 1998, but collapsed within a year due to the AIADMK pulling out. It proceeded to win the 1999 elections with a greater majority and new alliances.

Currently, the eight parties in the NDA are:
  1. BJP - Bhartiya Janata Party
  2. SS - Shiv Sena - Maharashtra
  3. JD(U)- Janata Dal (United) - Bihar and Karnataka
  4. SAD - Shiromani Akali Dal faction led by Parkash Singh Badal - Punjab
  5. INLD - Indian National Lok Dal - Haryana
  6. AGP - Asom Gana Parishad - Assam
  7. RLD - Rashtriya Lok Dal - Uttar Pradesh
  8. NPF - Nagaland People's Front-Nagaland
Former members of the National Democratic Alliance, who have left the alliance, are:
  1. NC - Jammu & Kashmir National Conference - Omar Abdullah- Withdrew in 2002, blaming the BJP for its loss in Jammu & Kashmir state elections.
  2. LJSP - Lok Jan Shakti Party -Ram Vilas Paswan- Withdrew following 2002 Gujarat religious riots.
  3. MDMK - Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam - Joined with Congress Party during 2004 elections.
  4. DMK - Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam - Joined with Congress party during 2004 elections.
  5. AIADMK - All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam - Joined with Congress Party during 1999 elections; subsequently re-joined alliance during 2004 elections, but did not remain aligned post-defeat. Joined the Third Front before the 2009 elections.
  6. PMK - Pattali Makkal Katchi - Joined with Congress Party during 2004 elections.
  7. IFDP - Indian Federal Democratic Party -P.C. Thomas-Following the 2004 election, he merged his party with the Kerala Congress, which is aligned with the Left.
  8. TC - Trinamool Congress - West Bengal - Withdrew from the alliance at the end of 2007. Joined the Congress party before the 2009 elections.
  9. BJD - Biju Janata Dal - Orissa - Left the alliance just over a month before the 2009 elections.
Parties who gave outside support, but are no longer allies:

  1. TDP - Telugu Desam Party - In the monsoon session of Parliament of 2005, the TDP decided not to continue as part of an NDA boycott of Parliament. Speculation of an end to the NDA-TDP relationship was confirmed in August of that year, when the BJP and TDP contested local elections in Andhra Pradesh on their own. The TDP was the founding member of the Third Front in 2009

United Progressive Alliance - Formed soon after the 2004 general elections after it became clear that the previous ruling coalition, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) had been defeated. The NDA had gotten only 169 MPs in the 543 member 14th Lok Sabha, as opposed the UPA tally.

The Indian communist parties (Left Front), the Samajwadi Party with 39 (now 33) MPs and the Bahujan Samaj Party with 19 (now 17) MPs were other significant blocks that opted to support UPA at various phases of its 50 month rule.The UPA did not enjoy a simple majority on its own in the parliament, rather it has relied on the external support given by these parties to ensure that it enjoys the confidence of the Indian parliament similar to the formula adopted by the previous minority governments of the United Front and the NDA.

During the tenure of Jharkhand CM Madhu Koda, the constituents of the UPA were, by mutual consent, supporting his government.At present the UPA is no longer supported by the Left parties.

Initially, the United Progressive Alliance was given external support from the Left Front which totaled 59 MPs. Similar external support was also promised by several smaller parties that were not a member of any coalition, including the Samajwadi Party with 39 MPs, the Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam with 4 MPs , the Janata Dal (Secular) with 3 MPs, and Bahujan Samaj Party with 19 MPs, who promised to support the government if it faced a vote of confidence. Nevertheless, these parties were not a part of the government. The UPA thus had at least 335 MPs out of 543 supporting it at the time of its formation.

Current constituents
Due to the volatile nature of coalition politics in India, the constituents of the UPA have been wavering. As of July 15, 2008 they were:

  1. INC - Indian National Congress (153 MPs) (Out of these 1 MP is now a rebel and another is a non-voting member)
  2. RJD - Rashtriya Janata Dal (24 MPs)
  3. DMK - Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (16 MPs)
  4. NCP - Nationalist Congress Party (11 MPs)
  5. PMK - Pattali Makkal Katchi (6 MPs)
  6. JMM - Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (5 MPs)
  7. LJP - Lok Janshakti Party (4 MPs)
  8. All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (1 MP)
  9. RPI - Republican Party of India (Athvale) (1 MP)
  10. SDF - Sikkim Democratic Front (1 MP)
  11. IUML - Indian Union Muslim League (1 MP)
Outside support is currently being offered by the
  1. Samajwadi Party (33 MPs)
  2. Bharatiya Navshakti Party (1 MP)
  3. National Conference (2 MPs)
  4. National Loktantrik Party (1 MP)
In addition, rebel MPs from Biju Janata Dal , the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Janata Dal (United), the Telugu Desam Party and the independent MPs take the tally of UPA supporting MPs to 275.

  1. Telangana Rashtra Samithi -K. Chandrashekar Rao- The Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) was the first party to quit the alliance, first when its ministers quit the Andhra Pradesh government, and finally when an official withdrawal was done at the national level by its president K. Chandrashekar Rao, who resigned his Lok Sabha seat.
  2. Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam - Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK), began its drift when it tied up with the UPA's rival All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) during the Tamil Nadu elections, and on March 16, 2007 officially withdrew support.
  3. Bahujan Samaj PartyOn 21 June 2008, the Bahujan Samaj Party, or the BSP, with 17 seats, announced withdrawal of its support.
  4. Left Front - On 8 July 2008, Prakash Karat, the general secretary of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) (or the CPI (M)), announced that the Left Front would be withdrawing support over the decision by the government to go ahead with the Indo-US nuclear deal, a Section 123 Agreement with the United States.
  5. People's Democratic Party (PDP) - On 4 January 2009, Mehbooba Mufti, president of the People's Democratic Party announced the withdrawal of the PDP from the UPA given that the Congress had decided to support the Omar Abdullah-led National Conference Government in Jammu & Kashmir after the 2008 state elections.
  1. DMK -On October 17, 2008 14 DMK MP's, including central ministers T.R. Baalu and A. Raja, handed in their post-dated resignation letters to the head of the party, TN CM M. Karunanidhi in demanding an end to the violence against civilians in Sri Lanka. There were consequently 16 DMK MP's left in the 14th Lok Sabha. All 4 Rajya Sabha MP's had also submitted post-dated resignation letters, including Karunanidhi's daughter, Kanimozhi had handed in her resignation on October 14, A. A. Jinnah, Tiruchi Siva, and Vasanthi Stanley. All 40 Lok Sabha MP's of Tamil Nadu and the union territory of Puducherry had also threatened to quit the government if it failed to take action on the Sri Lankan issue. Lawyers in Coimbatore joined their tamil brethren in burning an effigy of Union Defence Minister A.K. Antony within the court premises earlier in the day, alleging a conspiracy by bureaucrats of Kerala origin to keep the Tamil minority in Sri Lanka on tenterhooks. Following these actions, the TN CM Karunanidhi said, on November 4, that he was "satisfied" with the measures taken by the UPA government in the center on the Sri Lankan Tamils issue. A statement said: "we have a Centre, which realises the plight of Tamils in Sri Lanka, and the leaders there respect our sentiments," and that they were doing their best to mitigate the sufferings of the Tamils of Lanka. He added that, "We have to raise our demands to increase their action."

Update - March 27, 2009
PMK(Pattali Makkal Katchi) with 6 MPS and 2 ministers (health minister Anbumani Ramadoss and minister of state for railways R. Velu) decided to move out of UPA and join hands with AIADMK.

3 parties which were a part of or supported UPA, ie Rashtriya Janata Dal, the Lok Janshakti Party and the Samajwadi Party have decided to come out of the coalition and form their own pre-poll alignment in Bihar and UP. So the only major parties remaining inUPA are Congress, NCP and DMK.

Update - April 03, 2009
Despite their decision to field candidates against the Congress party in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and other states, United Progressive Alliance (UPA) partners Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), Samajwadi Party (SP) and Lok Janashakti Party (LJP) on Friday claimed they were still a part of the UPA and would come together to form a government under the leadership of Manmohan Singh after the Lok Sabha election.

“We are with Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh. There are certain managers in the Congress who tried to create a rift between us during the seat-sharing discussion. However, we still say that Manmohan singh will be our PM candidate. UPA will come back and fight communal forces. Our aim is to form the government,” RJD chief Lalu Prasad told a rally in Lucknow along with SP leader Mulayam Singh and LJP chief Ram Vilas Paswan.

Update - May 11, 2009 - TRS Moves from Third Front to NDA
The National Democratic Alliance (NDA), at a rally in Ludhiana on May 10, sought to project itself as a united front that now includes the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS). TRS chief K. Chandrasekhar Rao, who was with the Left-led Third Front, appeared on the platform and declared his support for this alliance. The rally, organised by the NDA’s founding constituent Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), was attended by a galaxy of leaders. They included the NDA’s prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani, BJP chief Rajnath Singh, JD(U) president Sharad Yadav, JD(U) leader and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, SAD chief and Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, Rashtriya Lok Dal chief Ajit Singh, Asom Gana Parishad president Chandra Mohan Patowary, Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) supremo Om Prakash Chautala and Shiv Sena leader Manohar Joshi. The TRS chief said his party was stabbed in the back after it gave the necessary oxygen to the Congress before the last parliamentary polls. Mr. Chautala warned the people that democracy would perish if they did not vote the NDA to power as the UPA was blindly following the agenda of large capital formation.

Mr. Lalu Prasad Yadav while addressing a separate poll rally in Chandigarh in support of party candidate from Chandigarh Lok Sabha seat Hafiz Anwar-ul-Haq had this to offer as retaliation - "We had stopped L K Advani's Rath in Bihar earlier and this time too, his dream of becoming PM will remain a dream”. Claiming that he has joined hands with the LJP and the SP to stop "communal and divisive forces" from coming to power at the Centre, Lalu Prasad vowed to again scuttle the plans of L K Advani, who is "dreaming" to become the Prime Minister of the country. "Those people who sow seeds of hatred between brothers and communities can never become the Prime Minister of this country," he said making a scathing attack on BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate Advani. Stating that his fight was against the BJP, RSS, Bajrang Dal and the Shiv Sena, union railway minister alleged "these forces are out there to spread poison in our society and breed hatred among the communities. Calling Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi "a murderer", the RJD chief said, "Narendra Modi is a murderer in Gujarat riots. ...Even the Supreme Court has ordered that the riots be probed by an independent investigating agency." He lashed out at Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar for sharing dais with Modi at the NDA rally in Ludhiana on Sunday and said his "so called secular mask has been exposed."