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Last Updated : Jan 15, 2019 06:33 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Lok Sabha polls 2019: How TRS and YSRCP could play kingmakers in Delhi

Despite a lukewarm response to his Federal Front plan, KCR is hoping to play a kingmaker in an event where the Lok Sabha election yields a hung House

Nachiket Deuskar @PartTimeBowler

Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP) chief YS Jaganmohan Reddy completed a 3,650-kilometre padayatra (foot march) earlier this month.

Interestingly, such a march was earlier taken up by his late father YS Rajasekhara Reddy and rival Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N Chandrababu Naidu.

According to reports, Jaganmohan Reddy has reached an understanding with Telangana Chief Minister and Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief K Chandrashekar Rao. Jaganmohan has reportedly said he would be working with KCR to bring special status for Andhra Pradesh.

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KCR has been meeting political leaders including West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to cobble up a non-BJP, non-Congress ‘Federal Front’.

However, with no commitments so far, response to the proposed front has been lukewarm.

YSRCP’s resurgence

Political observers have highlighted YSRCP’s rapid resurgence in the state. Some have also suggested that Naidu’s decision to tie up with TDP’s arch-rival Congress was part of an effort to counter YSRCP.

According to an opinion survey by India Today-Axis My India, 43 percent respondents think Jaganmohan Reddy should become the next chief minister of Andhra Pradesh. Naidu was opted by 38 percent respondents.

In Naidu, Jaganmohan Reddy and KCR have a common political rival. KCR’s son KT Rama Rao had said TRS would will enter Andhra Pradesh if necessary, to "politically finish off Naidu".

According to an opinion poll by Republic TV-CVoter released in December, YSRCP could win 14 out of the 25 seats in Andhra Pradesh. The Congress-TDP would settle for 11 seats (TDP and Congress winning eight and three, respectively). The BJP would fail to win a single seat in the state.

YSRCP’s vote share of 41.6 percent will surpass TDP-Congress’ 38.2 percent, the survey found.

In the 2014 general election, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) won 17 out of the 25 seats in Andhra Pradesh (TDP and BJP winning 15 and two, respectively). YSRCP had won eight seats while the Congress was wiped out.

In Telangana, banking on a successful campaign to attain statehood, TRS won 11 out of the state’s 17 parliamentary seats. TDP, BJP, YSRCP and AIMIM won one seat, each. Congress had won two seats.

Telangana, Andhra Pradesh 2014 Lok Sabha result

‘King makers’

In December 2018, KCR retained power in India’s newest state. His party won 88 out of the 119 seats in the assembly. The Congress-TDP alliance ended up with 21 seats.

KCR is hoping that the election win would propel his candidate to win in the Lok Sabha elections too.

Claiming that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress would not get majority in the parliamentary elections, TRS Working President KT Rama Rao said the interests of the state would be well-served if the party is in a 'decisive position' by winning substantial Lok Sabha seats.

KTR, as he is commonly known, said TRS could win 16 out of the total 17 Lok Sabha seats, excluding Hyderabad represented by Asaduddin Owaisi’s All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul Muslimeen (AIMIM).

"If we give 16 seats to KCR, he will bend Delhi's neck and we can get the funds for our state, the interests due to Hyderabad and schemes from the Centre to our people," he said.

KCR is hoping to play a kingmaker in an event that the Lok Sabha election yields a hung House. Multiple opinion polls have also hinted towards a hung Lok Sabha.

With YSRCP’s 14 and TRS’s hope of winning 16, the trans-Telugu partnership could form a bloc of 30 seats. With 30 seats, TRS-YSRCP could bargain hard at the Centre.

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First Published on Jan 15, 2019 06:32 pm
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