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A chequered odyssey

A chequered odyssey
Highlights

A dream has come true for TRS supremo. In his capacity as the Chief Minister of the new State of Telangana,

What the people of Telangana want from TRS and its leader is a new vision of governance

A dream has come true for TRS supremo. In his capacity as the Chief Minister of the new State of Telangana, K Chandrashekar Rao presided over the party plenary. Of course, his election as party president for the eighth successive term was a formality. But, an introspection would mean a lot for him and the polity in general. During his chequered political odyssey, KCR faced ridicule, repudiation, dissension and disillusionment.

But, he stood firm on his ground. KCR always advocated that Telangana will be a possibility only through a political process. Finally, an indefatigable KCR could achieve something that was seen impossible at a point of time. His political adversaries hatched conspiracies to undermine him. The party was split. Many deserted him. Rivals pooh-poohed him. But, KCR could ultimately make almost all political parties willy-nilly support the demand for separate State.

This speaks volumes of his political acumen. KCR and his party faced many twists and turns even at the hustings. But, dwindling fortunes did not dishearten him. Precisely for this, the people of Telangana rewarded him with a historic mandate. The Congress despite holding its political future at stake in the other region granted statehood. But it failed to defeat KCR. The BJP which wanted to claim the credit for formation of Telangana State could not impress the electorate.

But what is mind-boggling is that TRS is not attempting to herald a radically different political culture. The party and its leader are treading the same beaten track. Engineering defections and importing leaders from all parties, irrespective of their credentials, has now become the order of the day. It may be the current political idiom. But, the movement for separate State was not for just a politico-geographic territory. The people felt that the new State would radically transform their lives. This cannot be possible without new politics. The TRS lost an opportunity.

The separate State was presented as a panacea for all the woes. This now becomes a challenge for KCR. The unfulfilled dreams and unmet aspirations can lead to unrest. The party was primarily driven by sentiment. The self-disruptive politics of his rivals made him unassailable. But, now it is time for TRS to stabilise organisationally. The party seems to be attempting this and the plenary is a culmination of this process.

TRS is also executing a well-orchestrated strategy to disarm political opponents. The prime target is TDP. But, KCR is not sparing even the Congress. The Indian democracy is not new to this kind of political spectacle. This may or may not make TRS strong. But, what the people of Telangana want from TRS and its leader is a new vision of governance. The KCR government has rightly emphasised it would like to reinvent Telangana. But can this happen without redefining political values? The time would answer this question.

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