After around four years of Janta Dal United JD(U) coming back into the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) fold, the ruling alliance is just a step away from celebrating its fiftieth 'landmark' figure.
In the last Lok Sabha elections, NDA the 29 party alliance formed government at the Centre after winning with absolute majority. During the three years of its reign, the number of alliance partners have gone up to 49 with the addition of 20 new political factions into it. The news is doing the rounds that a principal party of United Progressive Alliance too can join the bandwagon.
Coming into inception in 1998, the BJP-led NDA under the leadership of former prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee has 'ruled' the country and been in Opposition for ten years in its eventful journey of 19 years. Shiv Sena and Shiromani Akali Dal have always been inseparable parts of the NDA while other political parties have mostly been in and out. JD(U) too was also initially a coalition partner of the alliance but in 2013 it parted ways. However, now, again, it has officially become its partner. There were 14 parties in NDA when it came into existence in 1998 which compounded to 16 in 1999 while Telugu Desam party always gave outside support to the Centre. But in 2004 Lok Sabha polls, its size condensed to 12 parties whereas in 2009, NDA had support of 13 outfits. Deprived of a win in 2009 general elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party not only worked hard at strengthening party structure but also worked at strategy to widen the base of NDA and studify the alliance. It contested elections with the support of 29 more political parties in the NDA alliance and on its own won ten seats more than absolute majority at 282 while NDA got 336 seats. After becoming BJP President, Amit Shah has stuck to the task of launching a "campaign" to connect the booth level workers with the party across the country and simultaneously expanding the NDA reach.
"Synthesis" of small political factions of Kerala , Tamil Nadu and East India has taken place over the years. The inclusion of People's Democratic Party in NDA family with whose support it has formed government in Jammu and Kashmir recently is being seen as the 'flagship ' partnership of the NDA with any political group so far. Prior to JD(U) re-entry into NDA, it has support of 337 members in Lok Sabha while 75 legislators are with it in Rajya Sabha. At the time, thirteen states in the country are being ruled by the BJP while in five states - Bihar, Sikkim, Jammu and Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh and Nagaland, it has formed government with support of outside parties. Out of the total 4,120 seats in all the legislative assemblies across the states in the country, NDA owns 1,814 seats out of which BJP alone has 1,406 seats