Allies in NDA have started bargaining hard

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BJP falling shy of a clear majority in the Lok Sabha, its allies within the NDA are flexing their muscles, aiming for lucrative ministries at the Centre. Seasoned politicians like N. Chandrababu Naidu and Nitish Kumar, veterans of coalition politics, have reportedly presented their demands during the recent NDA meeting. Though specifics remain undisclosed, intense negotiations are underway behind closed doors.

 

 

Speculation swirls around Mr. Naidu’s TDP, having secured a significant mandate in Andhra Pradesh. Allegedly, they’ve set their sights on five ministerial positions, including a Minister of State for Finance, and even eye the esteemed Lok Sabha Speaker’s post. Portfolios like Roads, Panchayati Raj, Health, and Education are also in their purview.

 

 

Meanwhile, the JDU, buoyed by its Lok Sabha gains, anticipates two Cabinet positions and a Minister of State role. The Railways Ministry is a coveted prize, according to party insiders. Additionally, they might push for a Common Minimum Programme and a coordinating body to ensure its implementation, a hallmark of coalition governance.

The BJP faces the task of accommodating other allies like the Shiv Sena and LJP, each with their own aspirations. Uncertainty lingers over Pawan Kalyan’s Jana Sena, while Anupriya Patel’s Apna Dal (Sonelal) anticipates the fate of its lone ministerial seat.

 

With the BJP securing 240 seats, 32 short of a decisive majority, the combined strength of NDA allies could bridge the gap. However, the INDIA Opposition bloc, with 232 seats, remains a formidable force. Their recent gathering in Delhi underscores their determination to counter BJP’s agenda.

 

In response, Mr. Kharge, representing the INDIA bloc, expressed gratitude to the electorate for their resounding support. He framed the mandate as a repudiation of BJP’s divisive politics, emphasizing themes of constitutional defense, economic woes, and the preservation of democracy. Asserting their commitment to resisting what they term as “fascist rule,” the INDIA bloc pledges to stand firm against the BJP-led government.


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