Parties reach broad understanding to work out finer contours amid protests

The Telugu Desam Party and the Bharatiya Janata Party are learnt to have reached a broad understanding on the tie-up between the two parties in the forthcoming elections on Saturday amid strong protests from the BJP district level leaders of both Telangana and Seemandhra regions.

An official announcement on the exact number of seats that TDP will give to BJP is not made yet as the two parties are said to be continuing talks on the finer contours like seats that the BJP has sought and those the TDP was willing to concede. The broad-based understanding comes after almost a fortnight-long impasse over the number of seats that the TDP was willing to give to the BJP.

The truck comes in the light of the TDP leadership’s decision to announce its list of candidates for the elections irrespective of the ongoing talks with the BJP. TDP president N. Chandrababu Naidu was expected to announce the list on Friday night, but dropped the idea after reportedly receiving a communication from the BJP national leadership.

This was followed by BJP national leader Prakash Javadekar’s arrival here on Saturday morning and Mr. Javadekar initiated talks with the TDP leaders straightaway. As the talks were in progress, a delegation of presidents of the BJP Telangana district units threatened to resign from the party if it went ahead with the alliance.

The party would suffer adversely as the TDP’s vote base was shrinking in the Telangana region, they said in a letter addressed to Mr. Javadekar. They quoted a recent survey which showed that the saffron party’s vote share improved by 18 per cent while that of the TDP shrunk to five per cent in Telangana.

These leaders wanted freedom for the Telangana unit to contest on its own without aligning with the TDP so that the party would grow and obtain benefits in the longer run.

“If you still go ahead with alliance, we are afraid that the BJP’s organisation will suffer and we should not be blamed for any future consequences that may arise,” the letter quoted the leaders as saying.

Kishan pacifies agitated cadre

Similar protests were reported from the Seemandhra region where the BJP leaders wanted the party leadership not to accept the Lok Sabha seats given to the party as the TDP decided to concede such seats where its prospects were bleak.

The Telangana leaders, however, appeared pacified after intervention of the Telangana BJP president G. Kishan Reddy who convinced them about the larger interests of the party involved in the deal.