Coalition Governments

Abstract

The Indian polity has been through 43 coalition governments at the state level between 1966/67 and 1998/99. In the present study we attempt to examine what this change in form of government from single party to coalitions has meant for the economy. The results of our study which examines the post 1980 period give us reason to be optimistic. Coalitions at the state government level appear to have, on an average, done well to increase capital expenditures particularly capital expenditures on social services and other developmental categories. They have, however, not succeeded in taking politically hard decisions of curbing revenue expenditures and revenue deficits. It is our contention that the weak majority of coalition governments is their major strength. The tenuous hold of coalitions on power gives them a license for undertaking reforms. If the opportunity is taken to undertake the more ‘politically difficult’ reforms to prune revenue expenditures then the ‘era of coalitions’ would turn out to be a blessing in disguise for the Indian economy

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Lalvani M., (2005) “Coalition Governments”, American Review of Political Economy 3(1). doi: https://doi.org/10.38024/arpe.84

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Mala Lalvani (University of Mombai, India)

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