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A tug-of-war in the offing

A tug-of-war in the offing
Highlights

Election to the post of Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha will be the key test for both the ruling party and its allies as well as the opposition The outcome would show who has high managerial and tactical skills and this could lead to change in the strategies for the 2019 Lok Sabha and Assembly elections

Election to the post of Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha will be the key test for both the ruling party and its allies as well as the opposition. The outcome would show who has high managerial and tactical skills and this could lead to change in the strategies for the 2019 Lok Sabha and Assembly elections.

The BJP would fire on all its cylinders and will go in for poll management which would include creating a pre-election environment and identifying voter segments. Under normal situation, identifying voter segment would not have been a major task. But now that the country would be going to polls in about six months time and as the political parties having gone into poll mode, the election of Deputy Chairman assumes importance.

The NDA candidate requires 123 votes, provided all 244 members in Rajya Sabha cast their vote. One seat from Bihar lies vacant. The BJP has 71 members in the Rajya Sabha and with its allies, the count would stand at 115. A lot would depend on the AIADMK which has 13 members. The BJP is counting on the BJD which has nine members and the TRS which has six members.

If these three parties support the BJP, then it would have no trouble in electing its candidate. The opposition on the other hand would bank on the Telugu Desam Party which has 6 members. The opposition together has 117 votes and with the support of the TDP, it would be able to elect its candidate.

If the BJP candidate wins the election, the saffron party is likely to rework its managerial tactics for Lok Sabha elections. The BJP which has clear indications that the situation at the national level is different from what it was in 2014, is said to be developing new modules to ensure that they are back in the driver’s seat though with reduced majority. The possible new electoral concept would be the maintain equidistance from all non-NDA parties including TDP, YSRCP and Pawan Kalyan in Andhra Pradesh.

Having realised that the BJP’s strategy to lean on the shoulders of parties like YSRCP and Pawan Kalyan’s Jana Sena to defame the AP government has backfired and has caused irreparable damage to BJPs image, the party strategists are said to be thinking of implementing plan B. The BJP bigwigs feel that an impression has gone round among the people that BJP was hand in glove with YSRCP and Jana Sena. Hence they feel that they should maintain equidistance with all parties.

YSRCP which had so far been keeping itself aloof from criticising the BJP has now taken a stand not to vote for NDA candidate in the elections for Deputy Chairman Rajya Sabha. Finally, a couple of months before the general election the BJP may announce a political decision like granting of Railway zone and Kadapa steel factory. While this may not help the BJP to win seats in AP, it could certainly help in softening the stand of TDP towards the NDA in the post- poll scenario in case the NDA needs support of regional parties to form the government. Politics being a dynamic situation, friends can turn foes and vice versa overnight.

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