Federal Front takes backseat as KCR assumes poll position

Federal Front takes backseat as KCR assumes poll position
Highlights

With the Lok Sabha elections fast approaching, Telangana Rashtra Samiti supremo and Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao, who had initiated efforts to stitch up a Federal Front as an alternative to the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress at the national level, seems to have shifted his focus to determining his partys strengths and weakness in every Lok Sabha segment, considering that his target

Hyderabad: With the Lok Sabha elections fast approaching, Telangana Rashtra Samiti supremo and Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao, who had initiated efforts to stitch up a Federal Front as an alternative to the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress at the national level, seems to have shifted his focus to determining his party’s strengths and weakness in every Lok Sabha segment, considering that his target is to win 16 out of 17 MP seats in the upcoming polls.

This explains why there has been no talk of the Federal Front by TRS leaders ever since KCR met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi in December. Before meeting Modi, KCR held one-to-one meeting with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik. As part of the preparations, TRS working president KT Rama Rao also called on YSR Congress president YS Jagan Mohan Reddy and sought the latter’s support for the front envisioned by KCR.

When contacted, TRS leaders said that the fast-changing political developments, including the mammoth rally in Kolkata headed by Mamatha against Modi, Congress victory in three states, and the fresh tension between India and Pakistan following the Pulwama terror attack have influenced KCR to modify his strategies. Due to this change in the strategy, sources say, KCR chose to skip attending the house warming ceremony of YSRCP president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy.

According to sources, the TRS chief has decided to focus on the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections and planned the party’s preparatory meetings, which would be led by TRS working president K T Rama Rao from Friday. However, in view of the recent developments following Pulwama attack and the way tensions have escalated on the borders, these meetings have been postponed. “We had planned to attack the national parties on their failures. Whom will we target now? Given the present situation, we cannot target BJP,” said a TRS leader.

Sources also said that both KCR and KTR were busy ascertaining the political equations in every Lok Sabha segment to identify the winning horses. The party leadership will take a call on finding new candidates in at least half a dozen Lok Sabha segments as some of the aspirants have contested the Assembly polls and one of them has since joined the Congress. The TRS has been eyeing 16 out of the 17 Lok Sabha seats from the State to bring pressure on the Centre for securing benefits to the State.

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