Sibling rivalry hurting alliance?

Sibling rivalry hurting alliance?
Highlights

Sibling Rivalry Hurting Alliance? The BJP is hopeful of early resolution of the crisis that has cropped up in the BJP-TDP seats-sharing arrangement in Andhra Pradesh, where simultaneous Assembly and Parliament elections are slated to take place on May 7.

Sibling Rivalry Hurting Alliance?New Delhi: The BJP is hopeful of early resolution of the crisis that has cropped up in the BJP-TDP seats-sharing arrangement in Andhra Pradesh, where simultaneous Assembly and Parliament elections are slated to take place on May 7. Nominations that opened on April 12 will close on April 19. The BJP is keen to find an early and an amicable settlement, so that the entire controversy could be put behind, enabling the alliance partners to focus on the election campaign.

The TDP is arguing that by fielding weak candidates, alliance prospects of winning more seats are being damaged. If former Union Minister K S Rao was fielded from Visakhaptnam, he would have had a fighting chance against Y S Vijayamma, instead of K Hari Babu. According to sources in the BJP, it is the rivalry between the sisters – D Purandeshwari and N Bhuvaneshwari – that is hurting the alliance. The TDP wants Purandeshwari to be replaced in Rajampet, besides changing Narsapuram candidate Gokaraju Ganga Raju. The expectation in the TDP was that Raghu Ram Krishnam Raju, who recently joined the BJP, would be given the ticket. However, the BJP sprang a surprise by picking Gokaraju Ganga Raju, because of his RSS-VHP connections. The TDP preferred the ticket being given to Raghu Ram Krishnam Raju, but the BJP had its own reasons for fielding Gokaraju Ganga Raju.

There were also some minor irritants with regard to choice of candidates for some of the Assembly constituencies. However, the flashpoint was the ticket for Rajampet parliamentary constituency being given to Purandeshwari. The BJP top leaders concede that Purandeshwari was inducted into the BJP on the promise of giving her position she enjoyed in the Congress, of being made MP and Union Minister, in the event of the BJP coming to power. But the TDP is irked by the BJP decision to grant a ticket for the national election to his sister-in-law and political rival, Purandeshwari, who recently quit the Congress.

The BJP feels the TDP has more to gain, as a result of the alliance. In alliance with the BJP, the TDP can storm to power in Andhra Pradesh. The TDP and BJP have also the backing of Jana Sena supremo Pawan Kalyan. In the event of the BJP coming to power, as all trends indicate, then the TDP will double benefit by the backing of the Centre. The BJP, for its part, would hardly suffer, in the absence of an alliance, but the TDP stands to lose, if it breaks. The BJP feels that the TDP, on its own, cannot face the formidable challenge posed by YSRCP supremo Y S Jaganmohan Reddy in Andhra Pradesh.

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