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A calculated strategy 

A calculated strategy 
Highlights

The Prime Minister launches TRS government\'s flagship scheme in the afternoon. Later in the evening in the presence of the Prime Minister, the BJP state president makes a virulent attack on KCR rule calling it autocratic and anti-people.

The Prime Minister launches TRS government's flagship scheme in the afternoon. Later in the evening in the presence of the Prime Minister, the BJP state president makes a virulent attack on KCR rule calling it autocratic and anti-people. There seems to be an apparent confusion. The cadres may be baffled. But, a political reading between the lines reveals the well thought out strategy of BJP central leadership.

Though, the BJP state unit makes right kind of noises to grab the opposition space, the party as such does not view TRS as a long-term political foe. Especially, after it broke away from TDP in Telangana, the BJP is certainly not averse to a tie up with TRS. But, it may happen on the eve of 2019 polls or as the post-poll scenario in case the election throws up a fractured verdict.

It may not even happen. But the BJP is alive to such a possibility therefore it cannot leave the ground open for the Congress to rally the people alienated by the TRS rule. The BJP top leadership is pretty sure that it is unlikely to repeat the 2014 show in many states where it reaped optimal harvest. Despite its hectic efforts to compensate for this possible loss in states like Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, the party is not living in a fool's paradise. It's certainly aware of the ground reality.

The TRS continues to hold the ground as vindicated by successive elections so far. The Congress is the principal force in the state challenging the TRS. Yet, the TRS is not averse to join hands with either Congress or BJP. This is characteristic of most of the regional parties in the country and TRS is no exception. Thus, the BJP central leadership is not ready to antagonise the TRS.

The future requirements of all India party may be in variance with the state unit's political needs. But, this is an expected dilemma of any national party which may fall short of a popular mandate. The coalition politics continue to unveil such peculiar political relationships. The emergence of strong regional forces throws up such enigmatic situations for the national parties to confront. The dexterity with which the party handles such confusing situations decides its political destiny.

As 2019 fast approaches, the BJP rank and file has to reconcile with these confusing signals. The possibility of an alliance with TRS lures them. Yet, the party leadership exhorts them to fight TRS. Caught in this political quagmire, the BJP in Telangana will have to struggle to expand.

The BJP aspires to repeat Assam in Telangana. But such a political predicament was not there in Assam. The BJP unlike in Telangana was fighting a discredited Congress government in Assam. Besides this political puzzle, the party suffers from lack of charismatic leadership at the state level. Competitive political space makes Telangana much more difficult nut to crack for the BJP.

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