TDP National President and AP Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu is pursuing a single point agenda these days to create a conducive and competitive political atmosphere at the national level to take on the seemingly invulnerable Modi-Shah duo.
Naidu’s immediate priority is to chalk out and implement an action plan to put together a Congress-friendly front and see that such a combination gets ready in right time to counter the BJP juggernaut effectively in the 2019 general elections. It is not an easy task to convince the apparently irreconcilable parties like Congress and Bahujan Samaj Party, Aam Aadmi Party and BSP, and between the Trinamool Congress and Left parties.
In the face of such obstacles lying ahead, Naidu is heading for another packed visit to Delhi on Thursday where he will hold in-depth discussions with Rahul Gandhi. “It is nothing new for the TDP to play a constructive role in national politics. I have taken it up as a political compulsion. An effective alternative has to be put together sooner than later,” Naidu said on Wednesday during discussions with his ministerial colleagues Kala Venkata Rao, Achchannaidu, Umamaheswara Rao and AP Planning Commission Vice Chairman C Kutumba Rao.
An astute politician with four decades of experience, Naidu knows full well the challenges that lie in his path to iron out the differences among the anti-BJP parties. His October 27 visit to Delhi appeared to be provoked by one or two unsavoury political incidents in AP, but it was actually a clear preparation for the TDP chief’s long-standing plan for his Mission 2019, that is, to take on PM Modi and Amit Shah.
Ahead of his current Delhi visit, Naidu has given hints of how differences can be sorted out among national leaders for the parliamentary elections though they may have limited options at the regional level in their respective states.
There has been a drastic change in the TDP’s policy towards BJP since March this year when Naidu broke his ties with the BJP-led NDA citing non-fulfilment of Special Category Status to AP as an immediate reason. On the other hand, the BJP making allegations of corruption, sand and liquor mafias against the Naidu government has long been a cause for rift, which widened further after the Centre stopped funds for the Polavaram irrigation project and the Amaravati capital construction, besides other issues.
As things stand today, the TDP is seeing the BJP as its arch enemy leading to a situation wherein Naidu has entered into a tie-up with the Congress for the upcoming Telangana elections despite the fact that the TDP was born out of a call to eliminate a ‘corrupt’ Congress.
The last two years have seen the BJP AP unit making all out efforts to strengthen their party at the cost of its relations with the TDP. This is seen as a big threat by TDP leaders who are unwilling to give scope to the national party to make any gains in AP. The battle for supremacy on the part of the TDP and the struggle for existence by the BJP have taken differences between them to a point of no return.