Trouble in NDA paradise: Why BJP and its allies are not getting along

Amit Pandey
Amit PandeyMar 08, 2018 | 14:39

Trouble in NDA paradise: Why BJP and its allies are not getting along

On May 17, 1999, the BJP government lost the confidence motion in the Lok Sabha by a single vote. On that day, BJP realised the importance of having political allies.

This realisation was reflected in Narendra Modi's thanksgiving speech after winning the 2014 elections as he went on to express gratitude towards allies and emphasise on their importance. However, four years later, the situation is no longer the same with general elections merely a year away.


The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance is fragmented and stands weakened. Let's look at where BJP's relationship stands with regards to some of its key allies.

Telugu Desam Party: Lok Sabha - 16

The Chandrababu Naidu-led TDP is the largest alliance partner after the BJP in NDA. The rift between the parties widened considerably after the Union Budget was presented on February 1.

The situation became so bad that Naidu threatened to bring a no-trust motion against the government in Parliament. Though he retracted from the demand later. The reason behind this disappointment is the insufficient flow of the funds to the state despite the promises made by BJP.


Polavaram is also a bone of contention between the Centre and state government. The Polavaram irrigation project is included in the AP Bifurcation Act, 2014, the terms of which suggest that the entire cost of the project — Rs 33,000 crore — would be borne by the Union government. On the contrary, the Centre gave only Rs 4,500 crore to the state for the project.

The latest point of friction between the two parties is the demand for a special category status.

Shiv Sena: Lok Sabha - 8


The party has declared it will fight the 2019 Lok Sabha and the next Assembly election for Maharashtra alone. Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray also announced that the party will expose BJP's bogus Hindutva in all future Assembly polls. Both parties contested the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) 2017 elections against each other with the Shiv Sena winning 86 seats, two more than BJP's 84. This bitterness between the two parties started growing after 2014, when BJP emerged as the largest party in the Maharashtra Assembly.

Shiromani Akali Dal: LS - 4

Shiromani Akali Dal has also declared that it will go alone in the Haryana Assembly elections scheduled for 2019. This will be a major blow to the BJP given the fact that the Manohar Lal Khattar-led government is faced with various problems in the state.

Hindustani Awam Morcha, Rashtriya Lok Samta Party and Hindustani Awam Morcha LS - 9

BJP's joining hands with the JDU in Bihar created discomfort among its other allies in the state.

Former Bihar chief minister and chief of HAM Jitan Ram Manjhi has severed ties with the BJP. There are rumours of a discord between Lok Jansakti Party and BJP over seat sharing talks ahead of the 2019 elections, even though party chief Ram Vilas Paswan has denied the allegations.


Another BJP ally in Bihar, RLSP too has said that BJP should start listening to smaller allies instead of ignoring their demands.

Talking to News18, RLSP national general secretary Abhyanand Suman conceded that after Nitish Kumar's Janata Dal (United) returned to the NDA fold the smaller parties got concerned.

Peoples Democratic Party: Lok Sabha - 1

The BJP-PDP alliance has remained mired in controversy right from the word go. Given that the PDP has always supported autonomy for Kashmir and BJP has stood for the abrogation of Article 370, which gives autonomous status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir, the alliance between the two parties was always suspicious.


Though the two parties have had several points of disagreements since joining hands, the latest strain in the relations came with the J&K government filing an FIR against Major Aditya Kumar over the killing of two civilians in the state.

BJP leader Subramanian Swamy criticised the Mehbooba Mufti government over the FIR and saif the BJP should immediately break ties with the party.

Naga People's Front: LS - 1

The 15-year-old alliance between Naga People's Front (NPF) and Bharatiya Janata Party landed in trouble after NPF chief and chief minister Shurhozelie Liezietsu accused the BJP of "trying to repeat Arunachal-style politics in Nagaland".

After this BJP ended its alliance with NPF and joined hands with the National Democratic Progressive Party.

By letting its relations with regional parties sour one after the other, the BJP is making a fundamental mistake. The party must know that in the longer run this might spoil its poll prospects in individual states.

Last updated: March 08, 2018 | 14:39
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