What is Coalition Government? What is its impact on Indian politics?
Ans. After 1990, Indian politics saw a rise of regional political parties in many states. It was also the beginning of the era of Coalition Government at the Centre. A Coalition Government is a Cabinet of a Parliamentary Government in which several political parties cooperate. The usual reason given for this arrangement is that no party on its own can achieve a majority in the Parliament.
A Coalition Government might also be created in a time of national difficulty or crisis,
e.g. during war time or economic crisis. In such times, parties can form an all party coalition.
Impact of coalition Government on Indian politics can be understood from the instances below
(i) After the General Election in 2009, the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) (consisting of 13 separate parties) formed the government. Indian National Congress (INC) had to enter an alliance with many parties, including several regional parties to form a government at the Centre. This led to a new culture of power sharing and respect for the autonomy of State Governments.
(ii) In 2014 General Election, Bharatiya Janata Party won 282 seats and formed the government. It is for the first time since 1984 Indian general elections that a party has won enough seats to govern without the support of other parties. Though Bharatiya Janata Party formed the government, but no Central Government can ignore the federal structure of India.