Naidu mobilises JDS, DMK for Opposition unity rally in Kolkata
A rally is being planned in mid-January in Kolkata where Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee would start LS poll campaign.
on Thursday. Naidu also explained DMK leaders of his decision to go with Congress in the Telangana Assembly elections and to join Congress-led Opposition parties at the national level. Naidu and Stalin have agreed to fight the BJP government in the next elections.
According to the TDP leaders who were on the trip, Naidu and Stalin have resolved to ensure that the BJP is not returned to power after the next elections and a non-BJP government is installed in Delhi with the support of Congress. Stalin, too, felt that the BJP was running a remote control on the AIADMK government in Tamil Nadu, since the death of Jayalalithaa.
Both Naidu and Stalin told media persons after their meeting that their opposition to the BJP government was primarily based on the apparent misuse of constitutional institutions like the CBI, Income Tax, Enforcement Directorate and Reserve Bank of India to target political opponents. Stalin had said that the issue of leadership of this proposed front would be decided later by all parties.
According to sources, Stalin told Naidu that DMK was in a better position to fight the LS elections next summer and felt that the EC might hold byelections to the Assembly seats vacated by T.T.V. Dhinakaran’s faction along with those of the LS. As the threat of rebellion from former Union minister and late Karunanidhi’s son Alagiri had subsided, DMK would win a majority seats, said sources.
Naidu on Thursday went to Bengaluru and held discus- sions with JDS leaders Deve Gowda and Kumaraswamy on the same issue. Naidu took along with him a delegation of TDP leaders from Telangana to Bangalore. Naidu congratulated Gowda and Kumaraswamy on the JDS-Congress combine’s victory in the Karnataka byelections, results of which were declared a day before.
Interestingly, Naidu claimed credit for the Congress wresting the Bellary Lok Sabha seat from BJP by a huge margin in the bypolls. Naidu told the JDS leaders that his party’s decision to fight against the BJP at the Centre had to do with the defeat of the party in Bellary, which was a bastion of the Reddy brothers till recently. Naidu told the JDS leaders that the falling graph of BJP in Karnataka would continue in Lok Sabha elections too.
According to TDP leaders who were present in Bangalore, Naidu told Gowda and Kumaraswamy that they should strive to recreate a political situation like in 1996-97 when Gowda became the PM under the United Front. This way, Naidu indirectly suggested that former PM should be ready to take up the job once again, if necessary.
Naidu invited Kumaraswamy to campaign for the Congress-led Maha Kutami, of which TDP, too, was a constituent in Telangana for the 7 December Assembly elections. Kumaraswamy is expected to address a few meetings in Hyderabad and other adjoining areas where Kannada speaking people are there in large numbers. Gowda and Kumaraswamy had agreed to be present at the Opposition rally in Kolkata.