Created: 4/22/1997

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National Intelligence

Sense of the Community Memorandum

('oaliliou Ahead

ransitional period of rule by weak coalitions, including the government cobbled together by the ruling United Front and new Prime Minister Gujral Most Indian parties will try toewsecond in athey fear losing seats and the perquisites that accompany them.

The Congress Party, which has dominated Indian polities for decades, has lost its ability toajority of seats in Parliament. The party will suffer funher factional nfls as its leadership bickers.

None ol the center-left panics will be able to win enough votes to fill the void left by Congress. These parties, including Congress, are banding together toovernment led by the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Parry.


- The Hindu nationalists hold the largest bloc of seats in Parliament and probably would gain more scats in another election, according lo some analysts. Nonetheless, potential coalition partners are leery of the BJP's nonsccular platform, preventing the party from using us parliamentary strength inoalition.

political wrangling in New Delhi is not Jikcly to affect decisionmakini on national security issues.

Many analystse public portrayal of the missile dcplryyments will decide their impact on the dialogue. High-profik cvmincntary on the deployments probably would damage prospects for talks by forcing politicians to take more outspoken poMtions on national security H

BPPPDWD FOP RttlASE mtliui7mi

Broad political consensus continues on other key issues, including economic policy and India's improving relations with its Mallet neighbors.

all Indian parties support economic liberalization, and the Parliament is likely toudgetto the Unitedending probuMiteis proposal.

policy Guiral designed as Foreignof more fraternal ties between India and Sriandnot been attacked during thepower. |


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