Who doesn’t want a mixed bag with mutual contradictions and internecine feuds to stand opposite them?
In fact, Minister K T Rama Rao hailed the coalition of the Congress-TDP-CPI-Telangana Jana Samithi. Instead of fighting multiple opposition parties, it is easy to fight one.
“In our case, the 50 years of the Congress, 17 years of the TDP together as opposed to the four-and-a-half years of the TRS is in front of the people. It is easy for people too to choose the best. And, of course, we have embarked on so many developments and welfare schemes that these opposition parties never cared for when they were in power. We have delivered on many of our promises. They are promising things which they couldn’t even think of during their regimes. I welcome this coalition,” said KTR in a tete-a-tete with journalists a couple of days ago.
The TRS is surely harping on the plank of its governance, while the mixture of parties is confused. Their single-most agenda seems to be pulling down the KCR Government. However, “Remove KCR” is a negative agenda and a negative slogan. The only negative thing that sells in the world is news. Reinforcing this fact, KTR said in his freewheeling interaction with media: “There is nobody who can measure up to the knees of KCR (meaning, KCR is the tallest politician among all) in both Telugu States.”
KCR is our CM, who is yours?
KTR asked who their Chief Minister candidate was. “For us, the leader is KCR. You may try to fire your salvos in a convoluted manner to drive home your question whether I will be the Chief Minister after the elections. The answer from my side is an ‘emphatic no’. The rest is your figment of the fertile imagination. My cousin and my senior Cabinet colleague Harish Rao and I are in unison supporting the leadership of KCR garu and none in our party or any other party can be bracketed equally with our Chief Minister.”
He asked journalists to count how many contenders from the Congress are engaged in a cut-throat competition for the post of Chief Minister. KTR, however, found fault with the TDP for stitching the coalition. “Chandrababu Naidu has clarified that he will not become the Chief Minister in Telangana and his party has no interest whatsoever in the State. Suddenly, he started hobnobbing with the Congress. He makes all tall claims. If he has developed Hyderabad so much, why was his party rejected in 2004 and 2009 even in the City? His party won some seats in 2014 for two reasons: 1. The people were apprehensive of our performance, and 2. the TDP had the support of the BJP and Pawan Kalyan. However, people reposed their unflinching confidence in the TRS in 2016 GHMC elections. We were elected with record margins. Now there is no BJP in Telangana. At least 100 of the BJP contestants in the State will have to forfeit their deposits. I am not sure if at least one of the present five MLAs, who are seeking re-election on the BJP ticket, would return to the House,” said KTR.
In fact, KTR pointed out that the BJP and the Congress are chipped off the same block and that Narendra Modi did not help Telangana any which way. The minister alleged that the Prime Minister is so parochial that he did not invite the Chief Ministers of other States to participate in the inaugural of the “Statue of Unity.” He sought to know what kind of “Unity” this was.
On the coalition, which is unable to sort out the number of seats and where the leaders are dodging and ducking, he said: “I am sure we will distribute sweets before they distribute seats.”
Interestingly, the alliance is not offering anything positive for the people. “Remove KCR” slogan is negative, while “We did this for you and will do more” is positive. Only positive campaign earns goodwill. In fact, the attempt to portray that KCR is worried about contesting an election doesn’t enjoy much patronage among anybody.
Perhaps, “victory by contest” has turned out to be his middle name in the last close to two decades. Resignations by him and his party legislators mandated by-elections on many an occasion. Some they won, some they lost. But, KCR never lost any election to the Assembly or the Lok Sabha since 1985, the first time he was elected to the Andhra Pradesh Assembly.
It is common knowledge that Chandrababu Naidu has nursed a constituency of traditional and social media bleaters who keep on singing paeans to him at the drop of the proverbial hat during and after elections. For them, it is always “wartime” (elections) and they never have a “peacetime” (governance). So, the positive vibe for the alliance is just manufactured, while it is natural for the TRS.