Indian general election, 1980

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Indian general election, 1980
India
1977 ←
January 3 and 6, 1980 → 1984

All 542 seats in the Lok Sabha
272 seats were needed for a majority
  First party Second party
  Indira2.jpg Charan Singh (cropped).jpg
Leader Indira Gandhi Charan Singh
Party INC(I) JNP(S)
Alliance INC+ Lok Dal (Janata Secular)
Leader's seat Medak Baghpat
Seats won 374 41
Seat change +286 -36

Prime Minister before election

Charan Singh
Lok Dal (Janata Secular)

Elected Prime Minister

Indira Gandhi
INC+

India held general elections to the 7th Lok Sabha in January,1980. The Janata Party alliance came into power after the elections to the 6th Lok Sabha held in 1977, riding the public anger against the Congress and the Emergency but its position was weak. The loose coalition barely held on to a majority with only 295 seats in the Lok Sabha and never quite had a firm grip on power.

Bharatiya Lok Dal leader Charan Singh and Jagjivan Ram, who had quit the Congress, were members of the Janata alliance but they were at loggerheads with Prime Minister Morarji Desai. The tribunals the government had set up to investigate human rights abuses during the Emergency appeared vindictive and a witch-hunt against Congress leader Indira Gandhi, who lost no opportunity of portraying herself as a harassed woman.

Finally, the Janata Party, an amalgam of socialists and nationalists, split in 1979 when several coalition members such as the Bharatiya Lok Dal plus several members of the erstwhile Socialist Party withdrew support to the government. Subsequently, Desai lost a trust vote in parliament and resigned. Charan Singh, who had retained some partners of the Janata alliance, was sworn in as Prime Minister in June 1979. Congress promised to support Singh in parliament but later backed out just two days before the Govt was scheduled to prove its majority on the floor of Lok Sabha. Charan Singh, forced to resign, called for elections in January 1980 and is the only Prime Minister of India never to have faced parliament. The fight between Janata Party leaders and the political instability in the country worked in favour of Indira Gandhi's Congress (I), that reminded voters of the strong government of Indira Gandhi during campaigning.

In the ensuing elections, the Congress (I) won 353 Lok Sabha seats in January 1980 and the Janata Party, or what remained of the alliance, won only 31 seats, whereas Charan Singh's Janata Party (secular) won 41 seats. The Janata Party alliance continued to split over the subsequent years but it had recorded in 1977 a few important landmarks in the political history of India: it was the first coalition to govern India, and proved that the Congress could be defeated.

Results[edit]

Party Votes % Seats +/–
Indian National Congress 84,455,313 42.69 353 +200
Janata Party 37,530,228 18.97 31 –264
Janata Party (Secular) 18,574,696 9.39 41 New
Communist Party of India (Marxist) 12,352,331 6.24 37 +15
Indian National Congress (Urs) 10,449,859 5.28 13 New
Communist Party of India 4,927,342 2.49 10 +3
All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam 4,674,064 2.36 2 –16
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam 4,236,537 2.14 16 +14
Shiromani Akali Dal 1,396,412 0.71 1 –8
Revolutionary Socialist Party 1,285,517 0.65 4 0
All India Forward Bloc 1,011,564 0.51 3 +1
Jammu & Kashmir National Conference 493,143 0.25 3 +1
Indian Union Muslim League 475,507 0.24 2 0
Peasants and Workers Party 470,567 0.24 0 –5
Republican Party of India (Khobragade) 383,022 0.19 0 –2
Kerala Congress 356,997 0.18 1 0
Republican Party of India 351,987 0.18 0 0
Socialist Unity Centre of India 307,224 0.16 0 0
Jharkhand Party 254,520 0.13 1 +1
All India Muslim League 196,820 0.10 0 New
United Democratic Front 140,210 0.07 0 –1
Shiv Sena 129,351 0.07 0 New
Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party 127,188 0.06 1 0
Tripura Upajati Juba Samiti 111,953 0.06 0 0
Peoples Party of Arunachal 69,810 0.04 0 New
Akhil Bharatiya Ramrajya Parishad 61,161 0.03 0 0
Peoples Conference 53,891 0.03 0 New
Manipur Peoples Party 49,277 0.02 0 0
Bharatiya Socialist Party 39,399 0.02 0 New
Shoshit Samaj Dal (Akhil Bharatiya) 38,226 0.02 0 0
Sikkim Janata Parishad 31,750 0.02 1 New
Muslim Majlis 26,363 0.01 0 New
All India Labour Party 14,720 0.01 0 0
All Party Hill Leaders Conference 13,058 0.01 0 New
Sikkim Congress (Revolutionary) 11,632 0.01 0 New
Sikkim Prajatantra Congress 5,125 0.00 0 New
Independents 12,717,510 6.43 9 0
Invalid/blank votes 4,928,619
Total 202,752,893 100 529 –13
Registered voters/turnout 356,205,329 56.92
Source EIC

See also[edit]

References[edit]