The recent tie-up between Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) and YSR Congress has left actor-turned-politician Pawan Kalyan's Jana Sena, which has been trying to make a mark in Andhra Pradesh politics, out in the cold. Kalyan, who was hoping for an alliance with K Chandrashekar Rao, may now have to join hands with TDP chief and CM Chandrababu Naidu.
Though Kalyan has announced that his party would contest on all 175 seats in the upcoming Assembly elections, the feat may not be as easy. There is no other popular face in the party except former Andhra speaker Nedella Manohar.
After weeks of speculation of an alliance between the TRS and YSRCP, the tie-up finally shaped up on Wednesday following a meeting between TRS working president KT Rama Rao and YSRCP chief Jagan Mohan Reddy. The alliance will be finalised after TRS chief KCR holds a formal meeting with Jagan.
Keeping in mind future political needs, Kalyan had tried to maintain a good relationship with TRS. He had met KCR at his official residence and praised the government’s development activities. Ahead of the Assembly elections in Telangana, he had even urged voters to support “good people”, an indirect backing for TRS candidates. After the results were declared, Kalyan congratulated KCR and many were of the view that there would soon be an internal understanding between TRS and Jana Sena with the latter hoping to ride on KCR’s winning run.
However, the situation has changed after the public display of bonhomie between the TRS and YSRCP. Kalyan cannot expect any form of backing from KCR now.
"Yes, we thought there was an internal friendship between Jana Sena and the TRS. Now, Kalyan looks isolated in Andhra politics," Vikram Pole, a political analyst, told News18.
The ruling TDP in Andhra has openly expressed its displeasure over the alliance, with Naidu calling KCR “the second Modi” and Jagan “the third Modi”.
Warming up to Pawan Kalyan’s party, Naidu said, "Why can't we work with Jana Sena."
After completing his 3,500-km padyatra, Jagan now has mileage among voters. Many are of the opinion that Jagan is aware of people’s problems and would use them as his poll pitch. But, Wednesday's developments indicate that Jagan is in need of an alliance.
“Kalyan, too, is aware of his capability. He cannot do much on his own. We cannot rule out a new alliance between TDP and Jana Sena," said Pole.
Jana Sena, BJP and TDP worked together in the 2014 elections when Naidu himself had initiated an alliance with Kalyan's party. However, Jana Sena did not directly contest the elections, but provided support in the form of campaigns. He helped the TDP bag seats in major districts like East and West Godavari that brought Chandrababu Naidu to power in the state.
After the election, too, he did not make any demand from the new regime, but asked people to support land acquisition for the development of Amaravathi and Polavaram.
Kalyan then raised genuine problems and forced the government to start dialysis centres for kidney patients and introduced pension schemes. He also played a key role in solving the problems of people living in areas affected by chemical industries. After the TDP walked out of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance, Jana Sena too left and started its own journey.