Lok Sabha Election results 2024: What if Naidu, Nitish ask for the unthinkable from Modi 3.0?

  • Lok Sabha Election results 2024: Now that PM Modi's third term depends on Naidu and Nitish, what if the two regional satraps ask for plum berths in the Union cabinet or removal of any key minister? Or what if one of them wants a Deputy Prime Minister's post?

Gulam Jeelani
Updated5 Jun 2024, 01:29 PM IST
Lok Sabha Election results 2024: What if Naidu, Nitish ask for the unthinkable from Modi 3.0?
Lok Sabha Election results 2024: What if Naidu, Nitish ask for the unthinkable from Modi 3.0?

As final results are out, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) looks set for a third term with 293 seats in the 543-member Lok Sabha. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) bagged 240 seats, short of the 272-seat majority. This leaves the saffron party scrambling for support from two of its allies, Chandrababu Naidu and Nitish Kumar. Naidu's Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and Kumar's Janata Dal (United) - have won 28 Lok Sabha seats taken together in the results announced on June 4.

Follow Live Updates on Lok Sabha Elections 2024 Results Here

Thus the two leaders, currently with the NDA bloc, are key for Narendra Modi's third term as Prime Minister. Because in case they decide to switch, as they have done in the past, the Lok Sabha numbers may turnaround against the ruling NDA leaving it with seats 265 seats, seven seats short of 272-seat majority mandated for a party or a coalition to come to power in New Delhi.

For now, it seems that both Naidu and Kumar will attend the NDA meeting in New Delhi. What remains to be seen is what will the two leaders seek in return for the support. For obvious reasons, their significance in New Delhi can't be better than they are enjoying right now.

Also Read: Lok Sabha Election result 2024: Pakistan media treads cautiously, flags ‘narrow majority’ of BJP-led NDA's win

Amid all the speculation, let's take a look at possible scenarios that the two leaders might ask for.

What if Naidu wants Amit Shah out of Modi cabinet?

Clearly, Naidu will call shots in the next government. He will certainly seek his pound of flesh. What if he wants Union Home Minister Amit Shah out of Modi 3.0 cabinet.

The June 4 performance is even more significant for Naidu. He has not just swept the Andhra Pradesh by winning 16 of the 25 seats, he has also won the Andhra Pradesh assembly elections by bagging 135 of the 175 seats. Both Lok Sabha and Assembly polls were held simultaneously in Andhra Pradesh.

Clearly, Naidu, whose TDP fought both elections as an NDA partner, doesn't need BJP's support to form the state government in Andhra Pradesh. Also Congress communications chief Jairam Ramesh has already promised that the Congress-led government will grant special status to Andhra Pradesh.

Also Read: Election Results 2024: 1.5 Lakh Vs 3.6 Lakh. Comparing the victory margins of Modi and Rahul

Naidu has been with Congress party before. The former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister re-joined the NDA in the run-up to the 2024 elections. He had left the NDA earlier in 2018. The TDP was decimated in both Lok Sabha and the Assembly elections in 2019 in Andhra Pradesh. Tuesday's performance makes him Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh for the fourth time plus a key player in Modi 3.0.

What if Nitish Kumar wants to be deputy Prime Minister?

Nitish has been at the centre of politics in Bihar since November 2005 when he won the assembly polls. Since then Bihar has witnessed three assembly (2010, 2015, 2020) and four Lok Sabha polls (2009, 2014, 2019 and 2024). With the exception of the 2014 ‘Modi Wave’ elections, Nitish has always aligned with the winning side in six of these elections.

He may be called a ‘paltu ram’ for his frequent switches but that doesn't write of Nitish Kumar's ability to navigate Bihar’s complex political landscape. Nitish's latest switch was in January when he left the Congress-RJD alliance and joined the NDA while staying as the Chief Minister of Bihar.

For 73-year-old Nitish, this is a golden chance to achieve something that seemed difficult before. He may use the newly-found leverage, due to 12 Lok Sabha seats that his party won, to ask for the unthinkable. What if he asks for a Deputy Prime Minister's position at the Centre or, like Naidu, a particular cabinet berth in New Delhi.

Also Read: Lok Sabha Election Results 2024: 5 factors that didn't work for PM Modi and BJP

Some reports suggest that Nitish Kumar might seek an assurance from the BJP leadership of not disturbing his government in Bihar and allow him to continue smoothly, at least till 2025. He may even want to be NDA's CM face in Bihar elections 2025, according to a report. Looking at his past record, no one can be sure that Nitish Kumar will stick with the NDA.

Before his switch in January, Nitish was one of the prominent opposition faces in the INDIA bloc. In fact he had hosted the first meeting of INDIA bloc in June 2023 in Patna, Bihar. Many had called Nitish the opposition PM candidate. 

The two parties have decided to press for the post of the Speaker of the Lok Sabha, Indian Express said in its report. Speculations aside, one thing is for sure, the two leaders will force Modi 3.0 to relook on its policies and decisions for the NDA government to survive, once it takes oath.

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First Published:5 Jun 2024, 01:29 PM IST
HomeElectionsLok Sabha Election results 2024: What if Naidu, Nitish ask for the unthinkable from Modi 3.0?

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