The UPA formed soon after the 2004 general elections after it became clear that no party had won majority. The NDA has won only 169 MPs in the 543 member 14th Lok Sabha, as opposed the UPA tally of 222 seats.
The Left Front with 59 MPs (excluding the speaker), the Samajwadi Party with 39 MPs and the Bahujan Samaj Party with 19 MPs were other significant blocks that opted to support UPA at various phases of its rule. The UPA did not enjoy a simple majority on its own in the parliament, rather it has relied on the external support to ensure that it enjoys the confidence of the Indian parliament similar to the formula adopted by the previous minority governments of the United Front, the NDA, the Congress government of Narasimha Rao, and earlier governments of V P Singh and Chandrashekhar.
An informal alliance had existed prior to the elections as several of the current constituent parties had developed seat-sharing agreements in many states. However, it was only after the election that the results of negotiations between parties were announced. The UPA government's policies were initially guided by a common minimum programme that the alliance hammered out with fruitful consultations with Jyoti Basu and Harkishan Singh Surjeet of the 59 member Left Front. Hence, government policies were generally perceived as center-left, reflecting the centrist policies of the INC. The congress party is today more closely aligned with the neoliberalism, strongly advocates social democracy and social liberalism.
During the tenure of Jharkhand CM Madhu Koda, the constituents of the UPA were, by mutual consent, supporting his government.
At present the UPA is no longer supported by the Left parties. It survived a vote of confidence in the parliament on 22 July 2008 which was mostly because of the Samajwadi party supported them.
In the Indian General Election in 2009, the UPA won a convincing 262 seats with INC alone winning 206 seats. All inclusive and populist policies along with a younger leadership has been credited for this.
Common Minimum Programme
The "Common Minimum Programme" is a document outlining the minimum objectives of the coalition government.
Initially, the United progressive alliance(UPA) was given external support from the Left Front which totaled 59 MPs. Similar external support was also promised by several smaller parties that were not a member of any coalition, including the Samajwadi Party with 39 MPs, the Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam with 4 MPs, the Janata Dal (Secular) with 3 MPs, and Bahujan Samaj Party with 19 MPs, who promised to support the government if it faced a vote of confidence. Nevertheless, these parties were not a part of the government. The UPA thus had at least 335 MPs out of 543 supporting it at the time of its formation.
The Left parties, despite ideological differences with the Congress, supported the UPA to ensure a secular government.
The Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) was the first party to quit the alliance, first when its ministers quit the Andhra Pradesh government, and finally when an official withdrawal was done at the national level by its president K. Chandrashekar Rao, who resigned his Lok Sabha seat.
On 21 June 2008, the Bahujan Samaj Party, or the BSP, with 17 seats, announced withdrawal of its support after the Congress starting opposing the UP government where the BSP was the ruling party. Their leader Mayawati said that she wouldn't enter an electoral alliance with either the Congress or the BJP. She also accused both parties of misusing the Central Bureau of Investigation or the CBI and attempting to implicate her in the Taj Corridor Case. She also accused Congress of making false promises to help the people of Bundelkhand and Poorvanchal regions as they were suffering from drought.
On 26 March 2009,PMK declared that it would join the AIADMK led front and withdrew from the UPA and the party president declared that two union ministers of his party will resign shortly.
On October 17, 2008 14 DMK MP's, including central ministers T.R. Baalu and A. Raja, handed in their post-dated resignation letters to the head of the party, TN CM M. Karunanidhi in demanding an end to the violence against civilians in Sri Lanka. There were consequently 16 DMK MP's left in the 14th Lok Sabha. All 4 Rajya Sabha MP's had also submitted post-dated resignation letters, including Karunanidhi's daughter, Kanimozhi had handed in her resignation on October 14, A. A. Jinnah, Tiruchi Siva, and Vasanthi Stanley. All 40 Lok Sabha MP's of Tamil Nadu and the union territory of Puducherry had also threatened to quit the government if it failed to take action on the Sri Lankan issue. Lawyers in Coimbatore joined their Tamil brethren in burning an effigy of Union Defence Minister A.K. Antony within the court premises earlier in the day, alleging a conspiracy by bureaucrats of Kerala origin to keep the Tamil minority in Sri Lanka on tenterhooks. Following these actions, the TN CM Karunanidhi said, on November 4, that he was "satisfied" with the measures taken by the UPA government in the center on the Sri Lankan Tamils issue. A statement said: "we have a Centre, which realises the plight of Tamils in Sri Lanka, and the leaders there respect our sentiments," and that they were doing their best to mitigate the sufferings of the Tamils of Lanka. He added that, "We have to raise our demands to increase their action."
Cabinet ministers in the government
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
Main article: Council of Ministers, India
As of 9 May 2009 the UPA had the following cabinet ministers in the Indian government:
During the discussion for the vote of confidence, BJP MP's produced cash in the parliament, as viewed on Lok Sabha TV, alleging a bribe by the Samajwadi Party to vote for the government. The BJP claimed to have documentary evidence in a "cash for vote" scam and submitted a report before the parliamentary committee probing the matter. The BJP also wrote a 17-page letter to the Parliamentary committee headed by Congress member V Kishore Chandradeo in this regard. Arun Jaitley said Samajwadi MP Reoti Raman Singh had offered his party's MPs the cash on the night of July 21. He also alleged that SP leader Amar Singh was behind the entire episode. Jaitley said: "The investigating agencies did not do their job. So we inquired into the matter and gathered documentary evidence in the case." He alleged the 'cash for vote' scam reflected the subversion of the Indian Parliament, as well as a section of the media.
The winter session of parliament in October 2008 came under intense criticism from the Left parties and the BJP to demand a full fledged winter session instead of what was seen as the UPA to having "scuttled the voice of Parliament" by bringing down the sittings to a record low of 30 days in the year. The tensions between the UPA and the opposition parties became evident at an all party meeting convened by Lok Sabha speaker Somnath Chatterjee when the leader of opposition, LK Advani questioned the status, timing and schedule of the current session of parliament.
In early November 2008, months before a new general election, RJD chief Laloo Prasad Yadav, along with other MP's from Bihar, threatened to resign en masse from the central government as well as with their MLA's in Bihar and Jharkhand if the central government did not take steps to arrest Raj Thackeray under the NSA for the recent actions against north Indian students in Maharashtra, as well as to initiate a CBI inquiry in the killing of a Bihari in Mumbai. The opposition BJP termed this "another spell of rhetoric" on the issue of attacks on North Indians in Mumbai.
UPA won the general elections with the Congress winning 206 seats, 61 seats more than the 2004 election tally. The pre-poll coalition of UPA, which did not include Lalu Yadav's RJD, Ram Vilas Paswan's LJP and Mulayam Singh Yadav's SP, won 262 seats, and needed the support of 10 MPs to get a simple majority in the Lok Sabha. Manmohan Singh continued to be the Prime Minister and in doing so became only the second Prime Mnister of India after Jawahar Lal Nehru to return to power after a full five year term in office. RJD, SP, BSP, JD (S) and other smaller parties and independents provide external support to the government.
Before the election, the UPA comprised the following constituent parties:
United Progressive Alliance — (englisch für Vereinigte Fortschrittliche Allianz) heißt das Parteienbündnis, das derzeit die indische Bundesregierung trägt. Es wird vom Indischen Nationalkongress geführt, der die größte Fraktion im Unterhaus des indischen Parlaments stellt.… … Deutsch Wikipedia
Progressive Alliance — may refer to:* Australian Progressive Alliance, minor liberal party in Australia * Hong Kong Progressive Alliance, political party in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People s Republic of China * International Progressive Dog… … Wikipedia
United National Progressive Alliance — Sometimes known as the Third Front. For the Third Front in power between 1996 and 1998, see United Front (India). For the Third Front in power between 1989 and 1991, see National Front (India). United National Progressive Alliance is a grouping… … Wikipedia
Democratic Progressive Alliance — is an alliance of Indian political parties formed by the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) in 2004. Current constituents The DPA consists of the DMK, Indian National Congress, Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi, Indian Union Muslim League and the… … Wikipedia
Richmond Progressive Alliance — The Richmond Progressive Alliance (RPA) is a non partisan liberal group in Richmond and San Pablo, western Contra Costa County, California, United States of America. They are mostly Green Party members, as well as left leaning and progressive… … Wikipedia
Alliance progressiste unie — Sonia Gandhi, présidente du Congrès et leader de l UPA L Alliance progressiste unie ou UPA (en anglais : United Progressive Alliance, en hindi : संयुक्त प्रगतिशील गठबंधन) est une coalition de partis politiques de centre gauche qui… … Wikipédia en Français
Progressive — is an adjectival form of progress and may refer to:Politics* Progressivism, a political movement/ideology with origins in early 20th century America * Progressive Era, period of reform in the United States lasting from the 1890s through the 1920s … Wikipedia
Progressive National Alliance — The Progressive National Alliance (Hebrew: ברית לאומית מתקדמת, Brit Leumit Mitkademet), originally known as National Unity – National Progressive Alliance (Hebrew: אחדות לאומית – הברית הלאומית המתקדמת, Akdhut Leumit – HaBrit HaLeumit… … Wikipedia
United Arab List — Infobox Israeli Political Party party name = United Arab List party logo = colorcode = #009900 leader = Ibrahim Sarsur foundation = 1996 MPheight = 4 (1996) ideology = Israeli Arab interest Two state solution headquarters = international =… … Wikipedia