Image Source : PTI N Chandrababu Naidu with his supporters

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) is set to form Modi government 3.0, scripting history as Narendra Modi became the second prime minister after Congress stalwart Jawahar Lal Nehru to retain power third term in a row. Though it is PM Modi who is set to achieve a milestone, the man who is in the role of ‘kingmaker’ is Southern stalwart and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N Chandrababu Naidu. Naidu took centerstage after the ruling BJP fell short of achieving a majority on its own in the Lok Sabha elections 2024. The BJP won 240 seats in the just concluded Gernal Elections. With a shortage of majority number – 272, the saffron party sought support allies to form government at the Centre, the first time under Narendra Modi-Amit Shah’s leadership. TDP won 16 seats in the Lok Sabha elections.

When BJP’s undershoot tally was declared, it was speculated, even today many people have apprehensions, that Naidu may switch sides to support I.N.D.I.A bloc to get fulfilled his a slew of demands, including the Special Category Status for Andhra Pradesh. But, on June 5, in the NDA’s meeting, Naidu reaffirmed that his support for NDA will continue, paving the way for Modi to take oath as Prime Minister of India for a third term.

Coincidentally, it’s not the first time Naidu became a kingmaker to form a government. In 90s politics, Naidu was seen as an axis of coalition politics. He mastered himself in forming a coalition government. 

Here are four stances when Naidu emerged as a kingmaker 

  1. In 1996, the United Front formed a government under Janata Dal leader HD Deve Gowda. The man who stitched 13 parties to form a rock-solid alliance was Naidu. Naidu was a convenor of the United Front. 
  2. In 1997, following the collapse of Deve Gowda government after Congress withdrew support, Naidu again managed to bring his United Front to power by convincing the grand old party to continue its support to run the government. Subsequently, Inder Kumar Gujral became the Prime Minister of India. 
  3. In 1998, Naidu once again emerged as a kingmaker. But, this time, he switched sides. He did not stand with Congress. In the Lok Sabha elections 1998, people gave a fractured mandate which led to a drastic change in the political landscape in India. Naidu stepped down as convener of the United Front and offered his support to BJP-led NDA which resulted in the formation of a coalition government under Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s leadership. Naidu’s TDP with 12 MPs supported the Vajpayee government. 

Also read: Chandrababu Naidu likely to take oath as Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister on June 12, say sources

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