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TDP has trump card now?

TDP has trump card now?
Highlights

The latest observations of the Union Minister Ramdas Athawale suggesting that the BJP is not averse to going with both the TDP and the YSRCP should have sent alarm bells ringing for the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu once again.

The latest observations of the Union Minister Ramdas Athawale suggesting that the BJP is not averse to going with both the TDP and the YSRCP should have sent alarm bells ringing for the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu once again.

Chandrababu Naidu has already accused the Centre of attempting to create a Tamil Nadu-type of situation in AP too to continue its hold over the State of Andhra Pradesh. He had also cited the "suspicious" statements of YSRCP allegedly in favour of the Prime Minister as proof of the same. TDP views Union Minister’s statement as a bid to create confusion among people and will certainly cry hoarse that the cat is out of the bag.

Having stepped out of the NDA wedlock, Naidu has every right to criticise BJP alleging ‘treachery’ and backstabbing Andhra Pradesh by denying it the Special Category Status. However, having lost the political initiative to YSRCP on the SCS issue, Naidu has been searching for the right narrative to convince people of the State over his silence and power-sharing with the Centre despite denial of Special Status to the State for nearly four years.

Of late, he has been mounting an attack on the BJP painting it as a villain with the Congress brush and also tagged YSRCP and Jana Sena alongside. Whether the BJP really feels that it could handle the two major rivals of AP, the TDP and the YSRCP simultaneously, as stated by Athawale, is an interesting question. BJP has reason to believe TDP exit from the NDA could be only a tactical move and expects Naidu to have a rethink after the Karnataka elections which it expects to win over. It is also on the hunt for new allies as its President Amit Shah had said.

So, banking on new and old allies is nothing but just a tactic of the BJP. But, Athawale's statement cannot be taken as a BJP statement as he is only an ally of the party, just as Naidu was till his ground realities forced him out. But, it is TDP’s right to believe so. As for comparison with the Tamil Nadu politics, the BJP has ensured uncertainty in a State it could never win on its own and also weakened the opposition by its carrot and stick policy.

As for AP, TDP claim that the BJP would get Jaganmohan Reddy acquitted is anyone’s guess. It is in this same refrain that TDP cites the acquittal of Kanimozhi and S Raja to buttress its contention. Now, the real question is how far Naidu can rake up sentiment issue in his favour, following Athawale’s statement on BJP keeping YSRCP as stand-by and also contending that charges against Jagan are not proved yet.

That said, Naidu may still be open to patch-up with BJP post polls, if it needs his support and accords the SCS. If it happens, is there anything wrong in it? Naidu had walked out of the NDA after Gujarat riots. Why did he join hands with the BJP in 2014? After all, politics makes strange bedfellows.

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