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Pre-electoral coalitions in 2014

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Dr. E. Sridharan, the Academic Director of CASI’s New Delhi branch, the University of Pennsylvania Institute for the Advanced Study of India (UPIASI), has written a post on pre-electoral coalitions for the University of Nottingham’s School of Politics and International Relation’s blog Ballots and Bullets. Read his insightful analysis of the politics of coalition formation before the election.


UPIASI Academic Director, E. Sridharan

India has had seven consecutive elections (1989 to 2009) in which no single party won a majority of seats in the Lok Sabha, resulting in hung parliaments. In 1991, the Congress formed a single-party minority government (which achieved a majority half-way through its term) but in all other cases minority coalitions dependent on outside support were formed, these being large, multi-party coalitions with participation of several regional parties since 1996. In the run-up to such situations, one of the keys to victory for both the leading national parties, the Congress and the BJP, is the number of state-level pre-electoral coalitions formed, for pooling votes based on seat-sharing agreements. Why pre-electoral coalitions? What are the incentives for national parties to form such coalitions, and under what circumstances? Continue reading…

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