AP politics turn murky much ahead of polls
Where are Assembly elections being held In Andhra Pradesh or Telangana This is what leaves one flummoxed Though Assembly elections in Telangana are scheduled to be held on December 7, the political heat is yet to pick up on a full scale but in Andhra Pradesh where there are no polls immediately, seems to be facing high octane political moves and drama Though elections and political manoeuvring
Where are Assembly elections being held? In Andhra Pradesh or Telangana? This is what leaves one flummoxed. Though Assembly elections in Telangana are scheduled to be held on December 7, the political heat is yet to pick up on a full scale but in Andhra Pradesh where there are no polls immediately, seems to be facing high octane political moves and drama. Though elections and political manoeuvring is not new, the elections starting from Telangana and four other States are going to witness a new kind of political ethos and culture.
What is happening in Andhra Pradesh is just a curtain riser to the murky political game that is in store which would unfold during the next few months. So far, elections were either fought alone by individual parties or an alliance used to be formed between some parties to defeat the ruling party. But now the political scenario has undergone a dramatic change. The funda, it appears, will not be ‘perform or perish’ but ‘fall in line with the BJP and the Central government or perish’. The advantage BJP has is that it has a strong cadre which has many people who can go hammer and tongs against opponents. It is a different issue as to what extent the arguments of BJP leaders or allegations made by them are true and logical.
Added to this, the BJP appears to have decided not to have any formal understanding with any party but keep them under its umbrella in an informal manner and fire its guns over their shoulders. In fact, to a great extent, the feeling the common man is getting is that they are implementing the policy of ‘divide and rule’ in letter and spirit. When the BJP came to power in 2014, people were awestruck with the speeches of Narendra Modi and felt that he would turn the country into Swachh Bharat not only in terms of civic issues but also politically.
It now seems that just as Swachh Bharat concept has taken a backseat in most of the States, the expectation of cleansing political system has gone for a toss. It all began with the BJP adopting ‘by hook or crook’ policy to form governments in various States and claiming to have won the hearts of people of the entire country. Friends turning foes and vice versa and politics of convenience are common phenomena in politics. But the kind of political games that are unfolding as the general elections are fast approaching has become a matter of concern for the common man.
The BJP which started feeling the heat ever since the Opposition parties gave an indication that they were likely to join hands to fight against the NDA in the general elections. The way all of them have been joining hands on many issues including the latest one on Friday where all important parties staged a dharna in front of the CBI office in Delhi which was led by Rahul Gandhi, has certainly become a matter of worry for the BJP. Hence it now seems to be more determined to implement the policy of divide and rule.
Let’s take a look at the political scenario in the two Telugu States. In Telangana, foes have turned friends. The TDP and the Congress have decided to sail together and have also roped in other smaller parties to face the TRS government in the Assembly elections. The TRS, which had claimed to have made the Centre adopt some of its schemes and proclaimed that it would never be subservient to anyone, according to political analysts is showing soft corner towards the Centre.
The BJP leaders are shouting from rooftops that their coming to power in Telangana was a necessity, but they know that it is a distant dream and the common man knows that they are having informal understanding with the TRS and would do nothing that could upset the apple cart of the ruling party. Who knows the NDA may need the TRS support after the general elections in Lok Sabha.
In the neighbouring Telugu State, the scenario is exactly the opposite. The TDP and the BJP are on a course of head on collision. Ever since cracks appeared between the Naidu Modi Jodi, the Centre had started tightening the screws and has been pushing the State government into a piquant situation. The State which has been struggling to recover from the loss it has suffered on account of bifurcation is being strangulated by depriving it of funds that it should get in the normal course as per the AP State Re-Organisation Act 2014. On the other hand, all out efforts are on to create disturbance and project the State in bad light in the eyes of investors.
The State government which was full of virtues till it parted ways with NDA has now become the most corrupt State. An impression is being given that the saffron party is using the YSRCP and Pawan Kalyan to achieve its objective to see that the TDP does not come to power. The Centre, which is in thick of controversy over the midnight transfer of the CBI Director, is now facing another charge that it was using institutions like Governor to settle scores with States like Andhra Pradesh. The TDP is now gearing up to make this as a national issue by enlisting the support of other parties at national level and wants a fresh debate on abolition of the office of Governor.
While the BJP is trying to utilise the attack on YSRCP president Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy as a missile to prove that law and order situation in the State has taken a nosedive and drive home the point that perhaps the Governor’s role is the only option, the TDP is trying to prove that this episode was scripted and directed by the BJP and enacted by YSRCP. What is worse is that the YSRCP seems to have inflicted another major self-goal when Jagan had refused to cooperate with the SIT members of Andhra Pradesh saying that he has no faith in the Andhra Pradesh police and would have no objection to give statement if Telangana police approaches him.
Such statements at a time when Jagan wanted to become the Chief Minister and rule the State for two decades could prove counterproductive. If a man who wants to head the administration of Andhra Pradesh has no faith in medical facilities and doctors even to treat a not so major wound and has no faith in local police how can be run the administration if he comes to power.
By making such a statement, the YSRCP is bound to antagonise the entire police force. Politicians remain in power only for five years where as people in the administration are there for at least 30 years. Anyone who comes to power have to run the government with the help of same set of officials. At the most, they can resort to large scale transfers and see that people whom they like are posted in key positions.
No political leader even late Karunanidhi or Jayalalithaa in Tamil Nadu had ever said that they had no faith in the State police. Karunanidhi got Jayalalithaa arrested and Jaya got Karunanidhi arrested at midnight by dragging him out of his bedroom. Still neither of them ever said that they did not have faith in the State police. All that they alleged was that the police were not behaving independently. The YSRCP needs to show greater political maturity if it were to come to power and rule the State.