The fall of the V Narayanasamy-led Congress government on Monday is yet another chapter in the Union Territory’s not so chequered political history with elected dispensations falling many a time either because of floor crossings or in a fight between the parties constituting coalition governments.
In the present case, Narayanasamy resigned ahead of the confidence vote in the Assembly with the coalition ministry reduced to a minority due to a spate of resignations of party MLAs and a DMK legislator recently.
Endemic political instability was almost a rule in Puducherry more than an exception and there were instances of ministries falling like a pack of cards during the last nearly five decades.
Only four governments had completed its full term, while six, including the Naryanasamy-led dispensation, had failed to complete its tenure.
The enforcement of the anti-defection law however brought floor crossings to an end in this former French colony although there was a stray case of defection by three members from AIADMK to DMK in the opposition bloc in 1985 who were disqualified.
Puducherry had governments for the full term of five years only in 1985 (Congress government under the leadership of Farook), 1991 (congress ministry headed by V Vaithilingam, present Lok Sabha member), 2001 (Congress government headed by N Rangasamy, now AINRC leader), and 2011 (AINRC government led by Rangasamy).
The governments that fell without completing the term were the ones formed by DMK-CPI coalition (1969), AIADMK (1974 and 1977), DMK-Congress (1980), DMK-Janata Dal (1990), and now Narayanasamy-led Congress-DMK coalition.
The Government of Union Territory Act 1963 has a provision for nominating three nominated members to the territorial Assembly having 30 elected members.
But it was only in 1985 was this facility used for the first time by the Congress government headed by M O H Farook after 23 years since the Union Territory was formed in the wake of the merger in 1962.
Friction between the chief minister and Lt Governor as was seen during the tenure of Narayanasamy was a rarity in the past.
The tussle between AIADMK Chief Minister S Ramasamy in 1974 and the then Lt Governor Chhedi Lal was not as intense as it was between Narayanasamy and Kiran Bedi.