Deputy Prime Minister of India

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Deputy Prime Minister of India
Bhārat ke Up Pradhānamantri
Emblem of India.svg
Flag of India.svg

since 23 May 2004
Member ofParliament of India
Union Council of Ministers
NominatorPrime Minister of India
AppointerPresident of India
Inaugural holderSardar Vallabhbhai Patel
Formation15 August 1947; 76 years ago (1947-08-15)

The Deputy Prime Minister of India (IAST: Bhārat ke Up Pradhānamantri), officially the Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of India, is the deputy to the Prime Minister of India, who is head of the government of India. The deputy prime minister is the second highest-ranking member of the Union Council of Ministers.[1] A deputy prime minister usually also holds a senior cabinet portfolio such as the home minister, defence minister or finance minister or foreign minister. In the parliamentary system of government, the prime minister is treated as the "first among equals" in the cabinet; the position of deputy prime minister is used to bring political stability and strength within a coalition government or in times of national emergency, when a proper chain of command is necessary. On multiple occasions, proposals have arisen to make the post permanent, but without result. The same goes for the post of deputy chief minister at the state level.

The office has since been only intermittently occupied, having been occupied for a little more than 10 years out of the 73 years since its inception. Since 1947 India has had 7 deputy prime ministers, of which none having at least one full term. The first was Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel of the Indian National Congress party, who was sworn in on 15 August 1947, when India gained independence from the British Raj. Serving until his death in December 1950, Patel remains India's longest-serving deputy prime minister. The post was vacant until Morarji Desai became the second deputy prime minister in 1967 and has the second-longest tenure. Morarji Desai and Chaudhary Charan Singh were the deputy prime ministers who later became Prime Minister of India. Babu Jagjivan Ram and Yashwantrao Balwantrao Chavan became deputy prime ministers consecutively without the break in different ministries. Chaudhary Devi Lal is the only deputy prime minister to represent both parties in the same post. Lal Krishna Advani was the seventh and last person to serve as the deputy prime minister of India until the post became vacant.

The current government does not have a deputy prime minister and the post has been vacant since 23 May 2004.


  • No.: Incumbent number
  • Assassinated or died in office
  • § Returned to office after a previous non-consecutive term
  • RES Resigned
  • NC Resigned following a no-confidence motion
  BJP (1)   INC (2)   INC(U) (1)    JD (1)   JP (2)   SJP(R) (1)
No. Portrait Name


Elected Constituency Political Party[lower-alpha 1] Term of office[2] Prime Minister Appointed by
1 Vallabhbhai Patel 1975 stamp of India.jpg Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel
Did not contest Indian National Congress 15 August 1947 15 December 1950[†] 3 years, 122 days Jawaharlal Nehru Louis Mountbatten
Vacant (16 December 1950 – 12 March 1967)
2 Morarji Desai 1997 stamp of India.jpg Morarji Desai
Surat, Gujarat Indian National Congress 13 March 1967 19 July 1969[RES] 2 years, 128 days Indira Gandhi Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan
Vacant (20 July 1969 – 23 January 1979)
3 Charan Singh 1990 stamp of India.jpg Chaudhary Charan Singh
Baghpat, Uttar Pradesh Janata Party 24 January 1979 16 July 1979[RES] 173 days Morarji Desai Neelam Sanjeeva Reddy
4 Jagjivan Ram 1991 stamp of India.jpg Babu Jagjivan Ram
Sasaram, Bihar Janata Party 24 January 1979 28 July 1979[RES] 185 days
5 Yashwantrao Chavan 2010 stamp of India.jpg Yashwantrao Balwantrao Chavan
Satara, Maharashtra Indian National Congress (U) 28 July 1979 14 January 1980 170 days Charan Singh
Vacant (15 January 1980 – 1 December 1989)
6 Chaudhary Devi Lal 2001 stamp of India.jpg Chaudhary Devi Lal
Rohtak, Haryana
Sikar, Rajasthan
Janata Dal 2 December 1989 1 August 1990 242 days Vishwanath Pratap Singh Ramaswamy Venkataraman
Vacant (2 August 1990 – 9 November 1990)
(6) Chaudhary Devi Lal 2001 stamp of India.jpg Chaudhary Devi Lal
Rohtak, Haryana
Sikar, Rajasthan
Samajwadi Janata Party (Rashtriya) 10 November 1990 21 June 1991 223 days Chandra Shekhar Ramaswamy Venkataraman
Vacant (22 June 1991 – 28 June 2002)
7 L.K. Advani.jpg Lal Krishna Advani
Gandhinagar, Gujarat Bharatiya Janata Party 29 June 2002 22 May 2004 1 year, 328 days Atal Bihari Vajpayee K. R. Narayanan
Vacant (Since 23 May 2004)


List of deputy prime ministers by length of term
No. Name Party Length of term
Longest continuous term Total years of deputy premiership
1 Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel INC 3 years, 122 days 3 years, 122 days
2 Morarji Desai INC 2 years, 128 days 2 years, 128 days
3 Lal Krishna Advani BJP 1 year, 328 days 1 year, 328 days
4 Chaudhary Devi Lal JD/SJP(R) 242 days 1 year, 100 days
5 Babu Jagjivan Ram JP 185 days 185 days
6 Chaudhary Charan Singh JP 173 days 173 days
7 Yashwantrao Balwantrao Chavan INC(U) 170 days 170 days

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Colors =

 id:BJP    value:rgb(1,0.6,0.2) legend:BJP
 id:inc    value:rgb(0,0.74902,1) legend: INC
 id:incu   value:rgb(0.46666,0.46666,1) legend: INC(U)
 id:jd     value:rgb(0.18039,0.54509,0.34117) legend: JD
 id:jp     value:rgb(0.12156,0.45882,0.99607) legend: JP
 id:sjpr   value:rgb(0.45490,0.76470,0.39607) legend: SJP(R)
 id:vacant value:black legend: Vacant
 id:gray1  value:gray(0.8)
 id:gray2  value:gray(0.9)

Define $today = 01/02/2024

DateFormat = dd/mm/yyyy Period = from:15/08/1947 till:$today TimeAxis = orientation:horizontal ScaleMinor = gridcolor:gray2 unit:year increment:1 start:1948 ScaleMajor = gridcolor:gray1 unit:year increment:5 start:1948

Legend = columns:4 left:150 top:24 columnwidth:150

TextData =

 pos:(20,27) textcolor:black fontsize:M
 text: Political Party

BarData =


PlotData =

 width:5 align:left fontsize:S shift:(5,-4) anchor:till
from: 15/08/1947 till: 15/12/1950 color:inc text:"Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel" fontsize:10
from: 16/12/1950 till: 12/03/1967 color:vacant text:"Vacant" fontsize:10
from: 13/03/1967 till: 19/07/1969 color:inc text:"Morarji Desai" fontsize:10
from: 20/07/1969 till: 23/01/1979 color:vacant text:"Vacant" fontsize:10
from: 24/01/1979 till: 16/07/1979 color:jp text:"Chaudhary Charan Singh" fontsize:10
from: 24/01/1979 till: 28/07/1979 color:jp text:"Babu Jagjivan Ram" fontsize:10
from: 28/07/1979 till: 14/01/1980 color:incu text:"Yashwantrao Balwantrao Chavan" fontsize:10
from: 15/01/1980 till: 01/12/1989 color:vacant text:"Vacant" fontsize:10
from: 02/12/1989 till: 01/08/1990 color:jd text:"Chaudhary Devi Lal" fontsize:10
from: 02/08/1990 till: 09/11/1990 color:vacant text:"Vacant" fontsize:10
from: 10/11/1990 till: 21/06/1991 color:sjpr text:"Chaudhary Devi Lal" fontsize:10
from: 22/06/1991 till: 28/06/2002 color:vacant text:"Vacant" fontsize:10
from: 29/06/2002 till: 22/05/2004 color:bjp text:"Lal Krishna Advani" fontsize:10
from: 23/05/2004 till: end color:vacant text:"Vacant" fontsize:10


List by party
Political parties by total timespan of their member holding Deputy Prime Minister's Office (1 February 2024)
No. Political party Number of Deputy prime ministers Total days of holding DPMO
1 INC 2 2077 days
2 BJP 1 693 days
3 JP 2 358 days
4 JD 1 242 days
5 SJP(R) 1 223 days
6 INC(U) 1 170 days
Parties by total duration (in days) of holding Deputy Prime Minister's Office

Living former deputy prime ministers[edit]

As of 1 February 2024, there is only one living former deputy prime minister of India:

See also[edit]


  1. This column only names the deputy prime minister's party. The central government he heads with prime minister may be a complex coalition of several parties and independents; these are not listed here.


  1. Rajendran, S. (2012-07-13). "Of Deputy Chief Ministers and the Constitution". The Hindu. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
  2. The ordinal number of the term being served by the person specified in the row in the corresponding period
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