Delhi Chaat: Post Telangana, will TRS go with the BJP?

Last Updated: Mon, Mar 03, 2014 14:45 hrs

Delhi Chaat is a diary of news and happenings that are under the radar and likely to emerge into the public domain soon.

India's most complex and chaotic election of 2014 is in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. And there is plenty of action there. The then united Andhra Pradesh kept UPA1 and UPA2 alive by voting for the Congress.

This summer, elections will be held to the assemblies of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh along with the Lok Sabha.. A new dispensation in New Delhi is almost certain given the uncertainty in Andhra. Here's a sneak peek at what may come to the surface in the days ahead.

KCR grows fond of BJP

Digvijaya Singh was quick to suggest that the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) would merge with the Congress in gratitude for creating Telangana but he might have spoken too soon. TRS chief K Chandrashekar Rao is apparently beginning to see the rosy side of the BJP.

Narendra Modi has opened up a big lead in the race to be prime minister and Rao doesn't want to be on the wrong side of the next government in Delhi. Merging with a sinking Congress does nothing for the TRS now that Rao has Telangana. Also, word is that Rao may include the BJP in a Telangana cabinet.

Vidyasagar Rao, who was a minister in the Vajpayee NDA government, might well be part of a TRS government in Hyderabad. Which of course is worse news for the Congress.

Naidu looks at Delhi role

Twice chief minister of Andhra Pradesh Chandrababu Naidu may be working out a future in New Delhi, away from the chaos of Andhra politics. Naidu met Modi in New Delhi in the first week of February and word is that Naidu could be part of a Modi cabinet should the NDA win.

Naidu is grooming his son Lokesh as heir to the Telugu Desam Party (TDP). Lokesh heads the TDP youth wing and is taking charge of many things in the campaign. Naidu is understood to be considering Malkajgiri as his possible constituency for the Lok Sabha.

Malkajgiri is an urban constituency which is part of Hyderabad area. It is possible that Modi might create an entirely new ministry for Naidu whose biggest strength was to bring in FDI for Hyderabad. The cyber city there was Naidu's most successful project.

BJP eyes spike in tally

The Modi effect is likely to yield a harvest of seats for the BJP in the Lok Sabha from Andhra. The BJP helped create Telangana by supporting the bill in parliament on Modi's insistence, which has boosted its chances in Telangana area.

The BJP first promised Telangana in its 1997 Kakinada Resolution and has delivered. In the Andhra region, Modi's reputation as a man who can deliver seems to be working. This, however, is not the case with the assembly elections where local factors are going against the BJP.

Jagan loses momentum

Until a few days ago Chandrashekar Rao and YS Jaganmohan Reddy were seen as the most likely chief ministers of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. Things have changed now. Rao has apparently indicated that his job was done with the creation of Telangana and he would prefer to direct things from outside, like Sonia Gandhi in the UPA.

This could mean a Telangana chief minister whom Rao can control. In the Andhra region, Jagan has begun to fall back. The TDP has surged ahead after parliament cleared the way for Telangana; it is even attracting Congressmen who might have gone to Jagan in the past. Unhappy Congressmen see no prospects in Andhra. With Jagan fading, the TDP is looking good.

No takers for Kiran Kumar Reddy

There is no interest in the plans of erstwhile chief minister Kiran Kumar Reddy. He delayed his moves until they became irrelevant. This is why he has again delayed plans of forming his own party. People close to him are heading to the TDP while others are considering YSR Congress.

Kiran Reddy has told friends he would contest on his own if it comes down to that. But it would be a meaningless gesture. Reddy's political instincts failed him. He could learn a thing or two from Arvind Kejriwal on how and why to resign.

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Vijay Simha is an independent journalist and sobriety campaigner based out of New Delhi. His most recent journalism assignment was as executive editor with The Financial World, New Delhi, and

He was a guest on Season 1 of the popular Indian TV show Satyamev Jayate, hosted by Aamir Khan.

Vijay blogs here and may be contacted at

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