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PARIPEX - INDIAN JOURNAL OF RESEARCH | Volume - 9 | Issue - 11 | November - 2020 | PRINT ISSN No. 2250 - 1991 | DOI : 10.36106/paripex government, although the had a clear majority of Indian polity. The extreme form of regionalism, in the form of 295 seats on its own. This was the first time that regional "secession from the Indian Union" took place in the south parties shared power at the national level. There were 51 India, when the D.M.K. demanded a separate independent members in Lok Sabha belonging to various regional parties sovereign state on June 5, 1960, and organized a campaign to in 1977. In 1980, regional parties lost their newly found achieve this goal. The D.M.K. also extended its demand to the moment of glory when returned to power. The DMK formation of an independent Republic of Dravidnad managed to win 16 seats but Akalis were reduced to one seat consisting of the states of Madras, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala and and the total tally of regional parties including the smaller left Karnataka, on the ground that "people of southern India were parties of West Bengal remained only 35 in the seventh Lok of a different stock from northern India and that the South had Sabha. But in 1984, regional parties increased their share in been neglected by the Union Government. 5 Lok Sabha. There were 76 members belonging to different regional parties in the eighth Lok Sabha. The rise of Telugu THE DECLINE OF CONGRESSISM AND THE RISE OF Desam in Andhra Pradesh and Assam Gana Parishad in Assam ANTI-CONGRESSISM were the main factors responsible for this performance of the Classic Congressism declined post-Nehru, and the political regional parties. However, with Congress having 415 seats in field became more heterogeneous. The Communist Party of Lok Sabha, the role of regional parties was bound to be India split several times over: in 1964 when the pro-China CPI- insignificant in national politics. M was formed and further in 1967 on the question of initiating an armed Maoist revolution in India. The 'Naxalite' movement Non-Congressism brought several regional parties together represented a weaponized critique of the Nehruvian model of for the formation of the (NF) formed in 1988. transformation from feudalism to socialism, and attracted These included TDP, DMK, AGP and Congress (S) apart from youth from urban centres and rural hinterlands. , the newly formed . But in the elections in 1989, these representing landed farmers in UP, who had previously regional parties did not meet with success. In the ninth Lok challenged Nehru's socialist and collectivist plans for Sabha, 48 members belonged to regional parties but the agrarian development, left the party in 1967 to form the regional allies of NF had only two seats won by TDP. In 1991, Bharatiya . Lohia cooperated with Charan Singh and the strength of regional parties in the Lok Sabha was at 57 but the BJS in the formation of a non-Congress government in UP this time around TDP had a fair share of 13 seats. AIADMK, in 1967, a year that saw the emergence of another non- Janata Dal (G), Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), Sikkim Congress government in Tamil Nadu. Sangram Parishad (SSP) and supported the Congress government of P.V.Narasimha Rao. However, these In 1967, the Congress split between the Congress (R) that parties were not part of the government. In any case, both in supported 's takeover of the party and as Prime 1989 and 1991, regional parties were playing a crucial role at Minister and Congress (O) that opposed it. In the mid-1970s, the national level in making or unmaking the central these splinters combined with other parties in new contexts: government. Thus, the 1977 elections not only speeded up the for example in the 1974 by-elections in which the Socialist demise of the Congress system but also inaugurated a new Sharad Yadav 6 was contesting, the BJS star Atal Behari era of partnership between all-India parties and regional Vajpayee and some from the Congress (O) and BLD parties something which never happened in the pre-1977 campaigned. In this period of drift, disintegration and period.The regional forces--at least some of them-quickly realignment, the Congress became a reduced entity, needing switched over to the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance support from other parties to form governments in Bengal and (NDA) in1998. The Lok Sabha in 1998 included 162 MPs Kerala. However, two moments allowed Mrs.Indira Gandhi to belonging to regional parties and 92 of these were part of the claim that role of representing the people-as-a-whole. Firstly, NDA. TDP, which was one of the leading parties of UF, chose to victory in the 1971 war with Pakistan, established her as a join the NDA, which proved crucial for the survival of the strong leader within India and internationally. Secondly, this government. Another regional party, AIADMK, played a reputation was enhanced by India's first nuclear test in decisive role in defeating the NDA government. The Pokharan in 1974, which signaled the technological thirteenth Lok Sabha (1999) has 168 MPs who belong to advancement of a poor country. regional parties. The NDA includes 109 MPs from different regional parties. 4 Both as well as the anti-Emergency movement contained contradictory positions. Referring admiringly to Role of Regional Political Parties Indian Politics Mrs. Gandhi as “Chandi avatar,” (the goddess Durga), then- Being mainly confined to a few areas or states, the non- RSS chief Deoras supported aspects of the Emergency and Congress forces have been more successful in 'challenging sought common ground with her. After the 1971 war Vajpayee the Congress' dominance at state levels. Thus, the Communist – then leader of the Jana Sangh – was reported to have called Party, the first political party in India to successfully replace her 'Abhinav Chandi Durga'. But the student's wing of the BJP, the Congress from power in an Indian state, has been and sections of the RSS, opposed the Emergency actively. On primarily confined to Kerala, West Bengal and Tripura. The the left, the Naxalites and CPM opposed the Emergency but DMK, which identified itself with the "Tarnil nationalism" and CPI supported it, as they perceived it to be a move against the Tamil-speakers, emerged as a strong power but confined to religious right in India, and imperialism internationally. The Tamil Nadu. The Telugu Desam founded by N.T. Rama Rao in Emergency ended when Mrs. Gandhi, facing mass Andhra Pradesh in 1982, the Janata Dal with its various movements and found guilty of electoral malpractice, was offshoots in U.P., Bihar, Karnataka. and Orissa, the National forced to rescind it and resign in 1977, paving the way for the Conference in Jaunniu and Kashmir, the Akali Dal in Punjab, first non-Congress government at the centre. By then, the the Assain Gana Parishad in Assam are other major regional 'people-as-a-whole' composed in the political settlement of powers, which have grown up at the cost of the Congress 1947 had long disintegrated. 6 influence and consequently, in about half of the states, the non-Congress governments have come to stay. These state- Not only did the emergency signal the formal birth of an anti- based parties are distinguished by their adoption of a Congress mood in the country, but it also triggered structural regional-national perspective, by their political desire for fault lines that the country's oldest party never overcame. greater regional autonomy of states in the Indian Union, for Hours after the Emergency was imposed on the midnight of 25 their focus on issues specific to their states or for their base June 1975, police turned up at the doorstep of Jayaprakash within a religious minority. The regional powers identified Narayan, the lightning rod for social unrest against the with the anti-Congress governments have been of different Congress government led by Indira Gandhi, to arrest him. kinds and forms, with their corresponding effects on the Anti-Congress sentiments had firmly taken root. The 10 www.worldwidejournals.com PARIPEX - INDIAN JOURNAL OF RESEARCH | Volume - 9 | Issue - 11 | November - 2020 | PRINT ISSN No. 2250 - 1991 | DOI : 10.36106/paripex (BJP), under the dual leadership of Vajpayee and Lal Krishna Advani, slowly began to piece together a national alternative—initially as an opposition and later as a government. The fault lines within the party had only widened as the party struggled to define itself in a visibly transforming India. The economic transformation was slowly beginning to stoke aspirations across the population. Even its return to power in 2004, largely on account of the BJP's inexplicable implosion, was as a coalition—the first time the Congress was attempting such an experiment at the centre. The latter half of the 1990s witnessed formation of as many as five non-Congress governments. The first among these was the BJP government under the leadership of Bajpayee for a period of only 13 days. The Vajpayee government was succeeded by the government under H.D.Deve Gowda and was backed by the Congress (I). As the Congress (I) enhanced its pressure, the United Front was forced to effect a change in the leadership. Thus, Deve Gowda had to quit paving the way for I.K.Gujral to become the Prime Minister, though the Gujaral Government too could not last long.7

After the 12th Lok Sabha elections, the BJP led coalitional government representing 13 parties was formed under the leadership of . But from its very beginning, the Vajpayee government was faced with internal troubles arising out of personal ambitions and lack of coalitional culture. Consequently, after a period of 13 months, the fourth non-Congress experiment in the second half of the 1990s failed. In the following elections in 1999, once again BJP led alliance of 24 parties was voted to power and since its formation, it has completed two year and has entered third year of its life. Strikingly, its decline was matched by the corresponding rise of the BJP—very akin to a see-saw. At the end of the 16th general election in 2014, the wheel seems to have turned a full circle. The BJP replaced the Congress as the principal pole of Indian politics and we have a majority government at the centre after a gap of 30 years—worse, the Congress presence in the Lok Sabha has shrunk to a humiliating low. The 40th anniversary of the Emergency should then be an apt moment for the Congress to rethink its space in the Indian polity. Electorally, it survives, for the moment, partly in the south and mostly in the north-east. Regaining the heartland will need much more than Discovery of India tours by its political heir apparent Rahul Gandhi. It is not so much about outsmarting a wily BJP under the leadership of .8

CONCLUSION From 1885 to Indian Independence in 1947, the Congress was movement and party in its own right, as well as a party of parties and a movement of movements which encompassed a wide range of political projects and positions. After the Emergency was lifted and elections were called in 1977, the Janata Party, a large anti-Congress coalition, formed governments in the centre as well as several states. Non- Congressism brought many regional parties together in the National Front (NF) formed in 1988. These included TDP, DMK, AGP and Congress (S) apart from the newly formed Janata Dal. But in the elections in 1989, these regional parties did not meet with success.

REFERENCES 1. Kohli, Atul. 1990. Democracy and Discontent: India's Growing Crisis of Governability (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press). 2. Vijay Pratap (2018) Non-Congressism to Anti-BJPism: India’s Political Imperative, Mainstream, Vol.LVI, No.12, New Delhi, March 10, 2018. 3. Malik, Yogendra K. and Singh, V.B., Bhartiya Janata Party: An Alternative to the Congress”, in Ram, Sundar, op. cit., II, p. 357. 4. Anil Padmanabhan (2015) The birth of anti-Congressism, 23 Jun 2015, 01:36 AM IST 5. Malik, Yogendra and Singh, V.B., 1994) Hindu Nationalism in India: The Rise of the , Vistar Publications, New Delhi, 1994. 6. Limaye, Madhu, Birth of Non-Congressism:Opposition Politics, 1947-1975, BR. Publishing Corporation, Delhi, 1988. 7. The Caravan, January 2019. 8. MINT (2018)Modern Anti-Congressism Gets Quiet Burial in its Place of Birth, November 1, 2018, 4:31 PM IST, News 18. www.worldwidejournals.com 111