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2-min read

With Grand Alliance Failing in Telangana, Rocky Road Ahead For Chandrababu Naidu

Analysts believe that Naidu will do everything in his might to stay relevant. This alliance in Telangana will have a huge impact on what happens in Naidu’s bastion, Andhra Pradesh. Jana Sena will not align with the TDP and YSR is Naidu’s arch rival in the state.

News18.com

Updated:December 11, 2018, 1:03 PM IST
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With Grand Alliance Failing in Telangana, Rocky Road Ahead For Chandrababu Naidu
File photo of TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu. (Getty Images)

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu on Tuesday lost out on one of the biggest prestige battles for him. Unable to match up to the silent KCR wave in Telangana, the Mahakutami, an alliance that Naidu scripted, lost what could have been the stepping stone to an anti-BJP allied force.

While the alliance’s campaigning was relentless, enough to unsettle KCR, Naidu still could not pull off a win. And now, Naidu has to fight yet another battle to stay relevant.

Doubling As Kingmaker

Late in October, Naidu made a packed visit to New Delhi and met several opposition leaders. During one press conference during his visit, Naidu did not rule out joining hands with the Congress to defeat the BJP ahead of 2019.

While Naidu has been critical of the Congress too for its unkept promise on Andhra Pradesh special category status, he joined hands with them in Telangana ahead of the state elections later this year. The alliance’s campaigning was relentless, enough to unsettle KCR. Not making his anger against BJP any subtle, Naidu’s plans of defeating the BJP in Telangana were supposed to give the anti-BJP front a boost nationally too.

Naidu is not a freshman to coalition politics. He was the convenor of the United Front in 1996, which TDP was a part of. Before that, TDP’s founder NT Rama Rao was significant in forming the National Front led by Janata Dal in 1989.

While his message by aligning with the Congress was clear—that he intended to not remain isolated—it was not enough. It is also believed that Naidu had, on the basis of his own surveys, suggested to the Congress about the candidates to be fielded. Now with the loss in Telangana, his dreams of being the convenor of the anti-BJP front will see a roadblock.

Fight To Stay Relevant

Analysts, however, believe that Naidu will do everything in his might to stay relevant. This alliance in Telangana will have a huge impact on what happens in Naidu’s bastion, Andhra Pradesh. Jana Sena will not align with the TDP and YSR is Naidu’s arch rival in the state.

“Now, the ball is in Congress’s court. Local Congress leaders, however, will fight a possible alliance in Andhra. If the Congress decides to go separate ways, Naidu has nowhere to go,” said one analyst, adding that one can still not dismiss him nationally as Naidu will “continue to move in the circle.”

Further, Naidu is all set to return home to Andhra to a lot of criticism. The state is grappling with major infrastructure and development work, including its capital city Amaravati. While Naidu has grand plans for the capital city, him not being available as much (owing to scripting an anti-BJP front and the Telangana elections) will be his Achilles heel. Additionally, the fact that certain parts of the state are grappling with drought will further accelerate the anti-wave.

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| Edited by: Huma Tabassum
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