Battle lines drawn in TS, in the wind in AP
While it was AAP’s Basanti Vs BJP’s Saffron in Punjab, in Telangana it is going to be Pink v/s Saffron.
While it was AAP's Basanti Vs BJP's Saffron in Punjab, in Telangana it is going to be Pink v/s Saffron. The warming up has begun. Leaders of both the parties are sharpening their vocabulary and gearing up for exhibiting their lung power. The top strategist of BJP, Amit Shah, is likely to visit Hyderabad next month to lay a road map to take on TRS. Here the lines are clearly drawn.
Next Assembly elections, whenever held, are going to be a straight fight between TRS and BJP. Congress has lost most of its ground and it is nearly impossible for it to recover the lost paradise. TRS this time certainly has an uphill task as there is growing anti-incumbency factor. Though Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao and other leaders claim that Telangana is a corruption-free state, ground realities indicate that corruption is on freely even in the flagship programme called Dalit Bandhu.
The neighbouring Telugu state Andhra Pradesh also has got into election mode though who vs who is still not clear. It may take some more time for a clear picture to emerge. YSRCP president Jagan Mohan Reddy has made it clear that about 50 per cent of the MLAs may have to be replaced as their performance is not up to the mark. He has given a wake-up call to all his MLAs and ministers and has asked them to go door-to-door and take up propaganda of the welfare schemes taken up by the state government in the last three years. He is also going in for a reshuffle of the state cabinet and hopes that these measures will help in overcoming the anti-incumbency factor.
On the other hand, Jana Sena leader Pavan Kalyan thundered during a public meeting held to mark the party's formation day celebrations where he hinted at the possibility of all anti-YSRCP forces joining hands to see that there is no split of votes. In Andhra Pradesh, the parties who matter as on date are YSRCP, Jana Sena and TDP. Though BJP is not a political force and has just 0.5% of vote share, it matters because it is in power at centre and would be working out the road map.
Though there are other parties like Congress, left and BSP, Congress and left will not join the proposed alliance because they are anti-BJP. Congress may still have some negligible vote share but for all practical purposes it is nonexistent. Jana Sena and TDP are the only two parties which are working at ground level.
If Jana Sena, BJP TDP succeed in arriving at some understanding and fight the elections unitedly, it certainly can offer a tough fight to the ruling YSRCP. Even if one takes the caste aspect into consideration, apart from Reddys it is the Kamma and Kapu votes that matter most and in case if it is a straight fight between the YSRCP and the alliance, it would result in division of votes between the YSRCP and the anti-YSRCP group.
Despite the ruling party claiming to have implemented different programmes for the welfare of people, including direct cash benefit schemes, at the ground level, the fact is that there is an anti-incumbency factor. How the anti-YSRCP parties will be able to convert this into their advantage and how people will react only time will tell. Andhra voters are known to be silent voters.