It was a changed scenario in the new Lok Sabha with the churning brought out by the elections throwing in contrasts.
While BJP led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi was in full strength on the Treasury benches, Congress was a decimated lot on the Opposition with just 44 members, its lowest tally ever.
Amid thumping of desks, Modi walked into the Lok Sabha as the victor closely followed by senior BJP leader L K Advani.
Clad in an off-white slightly cream-coloured kurta, Modi greeted the members with a smile before going around the front rows and exchanged pleasantries with the members.
As he reached the Congress benches, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi was walking into the aisle. Both greeted each other with folded hands.
The seating arrangement also reflected the change of guard at the Centre as BJP has secured a majority on its own in the 16th Lok Sabha, a feat achieved by any party for the first time after 1984.
BJP patriarch Advani was seated next to Modi being Chairman of the BJP Parliamentary Party.
The front bench next to them was occupied by five leaders, Murli Manohar Joshi, Ram Vilas Paswan (LJP chief), M Venkaiah Naidu, Sushma Swaraj and Rajnath Singh. Nitin Gadkari, a former BJP chief, was sitting in the second row.
In the Opposition benches, the first row was occupied by Leader of the Congress party in the House Mallikarjun Kharge, Sonia Gandhi, M Veerappa Moily and K H Muniyappa.
Rahul Gandhi and Varun Gandhi sat in the back benches on their respective sides.
Those occupying front rows on the Opposition side included Mulayam Singh Yadav, Sudip Bandyopadhyay (TMC), Arjun Charan Sethi (BJD) and M Thambidurai (AIADMK) occupied front rows.
Before the House assembled, Home Minister Rajnath Singh walked around the front rows and greeted the members.
While the BJP had only one member in saffron robes, Yogi Adityanath, in the last Lok Sabha, this time there were at least three members who were clad in similar robes.
The new House missed many of its previous members who had made a mark in Parliament. They include CPI’s Gurudas Dasgupta who did not contest this time, CPI(M) leader Basudeb Acharia who lost out to Moon Moon Sen of Trinamool Congress, JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav and expelled BJP leader Jaswant Singh.
BSP and DMK, which had sizeable numbers in the previous House, has no representation this time, as also National Conference and Ajit Singh’s Rashtriya Lok Dal.
For all the latest India News, download Indian Express App nowFirst Published on: June 4, 2014 1:35 pm