Is coalition politics inimical to economic growth? There is no clear answer. At a discussion on regional parties at the India Economic Summit on Sunday, the responses ranged from their role as a safety valve for local aspirations to being vehicles that helped national parties reach out to people.
D. Raja, national secretary of CPI, reflected on how coalitions have a limited mandate nationally. Maharashtra CM Vilasrao Deshmukh pointed to conflicts between regional and national politics, saying a common platform was a must.
When it comes to economic policy, regional parties have a role to play in creating a national consensus. After all, they represent the aspirations of ‘smaller’ electorates. But that does not happen, thanks to their narrow worldviews. While India’s economy continues to be strong despite multiple political faultlines, it’s time these parties think big for their electorates’ future.