- Four opposition parties — Congress, TDP, CPI and the newly formed Telangana Janasamithi Party (TJS) have decided to form a “Mahakutami” (grand alliance).
Telangana is all set to go for polls on December 7, 2018 for its 119 assembly seats. The elections will take place in single phase. On September 6, 2018, the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) had dissolved the Assembly, paving way for early elections. Four opposition parties — Congress, TDP, CPI and the newly formed Telangana Janasamithi Party (TJS) have decided to form a “Mahakutami” (grand alliance) to take on the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) led by chief minister K Chandrashekhar Rao (KCR), one of the famous leaders of Telangana who dissolved the assembly last month to go in for early elections in the state. According to the sources soon there will be a formal announcement regarding the tie-up.
Focus is on the Farmers and Youth this Time
According to sources four parties in Telangana is focusing on the youth and the farmer and they are trying to work on the common minimum program or the CMP. They believe that in this way they can confront the populist poll of KCR. A committee headed by Telangana movement leader Kodandaram, one of the political leaders of Telangana who formed TJS just six months ago, has been constituted to work out the CMP. Though a smaller outfit, the Telangana Janasamithi Party has been running parallel to the Telangana Rashtra Samithi on issues concerning the state.
Coalition Worked for the Restoration of the Agency
Kondandaram, one of the famous politicians of Telangana told an agency:
“Since elections have come up sooner, the general feeling here is that no single party can win against TRS and that’s why all parties should come together to form a coalition. The pressure to form the coalition has come from the ground and any party not going for it is likely to be seen as anti-people,”
According to him the common agenda of coalition is “based on two objectives―restoring democracy and realisation of the aspirations of people of Telengana”.
Sources are of the opinion that they seat sharing formula may work here especially because Congress has hold over 119 seats. According to a TJS leader:
“If they (Congress) take 80 seats and leave the rest for smaller parties, there should be no problem with the coalition,”
Old Equations to Change this Time
In the first Lok Sabha election following the carving out of Telangana from Andhra Pradesh, the TRS led by K Chandhrashekar Rao, one of the top 10 leaders of Telangana won 11 out of the 17 parliamentary seats with a 34.9% vote share. Congress, which won 2 seats, had a 24.7% vote share while TDP and BJP secured one seat each with 12.3% and 10.5% vote share, respectively.
Congress tying up with Telugu Desam Party (TDP), which has some presence in the state, is interesting since Chandrababu Naidu, one of the most popular leaders of Telangana had blamed Congress for bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh. According to various sources the cadres wanted the defeat of TRS because, since the 2014 election both the Congress and the TDP MLAs are moving from their party to TRS.