Govts fell thrice on confidence motions
As the Lok Sabha debates a no-confidence motion brought against the Narendra Modi government by the opposition, the 28th such motion to be admitted in the Lower House, data compiled by a think tank shows all previous ones have either been defeated or remained inconclusive.
However, at least thrice governments have fallen during vote on a “motion of confidence”, which is a motion brought by the government to prove its strength.
A no-confidence motion is a formal proposal moved by a member against the government in Lok Sabha under Rule 198 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in Lok Sabha.
According to data compiled by PRS Legislative Research, the highest number of no-confidence motions – 15 – in the history of independent India was moved against governments led by Indira Gandhi.
Longest-serving prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru, whose tenure lasted 16 years and 286 days, faced only one no-confidence motion, which was moved in the aftermath of India’s bitter loss to China in the 1962 war. The motion was, however, defeated.
The only time a no-confidence motion triggered the fall of a government was in 1979. A motion moved against the Morarji Desai government had led to his resignation, even as the debate remained inconclusive and there was no voting.
Thrice governments have fallen during the vote of confidence – the V P Singh government in 1990, H D Deve Gowda government in 1997 and the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government in 1999.
On November 7, 1990, V P Singh moved a Motion of Confidence. The motion was defeated after the BJP withdrew its support over the Ram temple issue. He lost the motion by 142 votes to 346 votes.
In 1997, the H D Deve Gowda government lost a vote of confidence on April 11. Deve Gowda’s 10-month-old coalition government fell as 292 MPs voted against the government, while 158 MPs supported.