Mulayam Singh Yadav: On that day.

-Galla S Kiran Kumar,Bureau Chief Telagana (Andhra Pradesh)

In 1996, Mulayam Singh Yadav was about to take over as Prime Minister. But that opportunity was lost due to coalition politics.

Mulayam Singh Yadav has come closest to becoming the prime minister in his long political career of nearly six decades. But due to some reasons, he narrowly lost the Prime Minister’s seat. In that case, although Mulayam was in the lead in the PM race, RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav and Sharad Yadav raised objections and he could not become the Prime Minister.

The Congress was defeated in the 1996 general elections. Hastam got 141 seats and BJP became the largest party with 161 seats. Atal Bihari Vajpayee was invited to form the government and he took oath as the Prime Minister. But the Vajpayee government collapsed within 13 days. After that, who should form the government became questionable. Congress showed no interest in forming a coalition government.

Earlier, all eyes were on VP Singh who formed the coalition government in 1989. But he refused to take up the post of Prime Minister, then West Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu’s name was proposed. But CPM Politburo rejected VP Singh’s offer. In this order, the names of Mulayam Singh Yadav and Lalu Prasad Yadav came to the fore. Meanwhile.. Lalu has already been sidelined from the Prime Minister’s race as charges have been brought against him in the fodder scam case.

After that, Harikishan Singh Surjit, a key Left leader, was entrusted with the task of forming a coalition government. Surjith, who succeeded in gathering the parties, suggested Mulayam’s name for the post of Prime Minister. But this proposal was opposed by Lalu Prasad Yadav and Sharad Yadav. With this ‘Netaji’ lost the chance to become Prime Minister. Later, the United Front government was formed under the leadership of Deve Gowda.