The BJP Tuesday claimed its electoral prospects in poll-bound Telangana had improved with the Congress joining hands with the TDP, even as it hit out at the ruling TRS calling it a “family shop”.
Party spokesperson G V L Narasimha Rao said the BJP sees itself as the main challenger to the TRS in Telangana, where it would contest all seats on its own.
He claimed that the Congress was tying up with “minor parties” after realising that it was not upto the challenge of taking on the Telangana Rashtra Samithi.
The Congress, the TDP headed by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, the CPI and Prof M Kodandaram’s Telangana Jana Samithi are in discussions to forge an alliance ahead of the assembly elections, expected to be held in December this year.
“The tie-up with the TDP has made the Congress even more unappealing”, Rao, who is a Rajya Sabha member, told PTI.
The BJP and the TDP had fought together the 2014 elections to the 119-member Telangana Assembly.
With a vote share of close to 15 per cent, the TDP bagged 15 out of the 72 seats it had contested. The BJP had fielded candidates in 45 segments and won five seats with a vote share of just over seven per cent.
However, the BJP had later distanced itself from the TDP in Telangana and said it would contest polls on its own whenever they were held.
“Last time, one major factor for our underperformance (in Telangana) was our alliance with the TDP. The BJP ended this alliance in Telangana as we felt the TDP was hurting our prospects. Now the burden (the TDP) has gone to the Congress. Certainly, we see our chances improving because of that”, he said.
As many as 12 TDP MLAs defected to the TRS and another to the Congress since 2014, leaving it with only two legislators in the recently dissolved House.
Several leaders of TRS, which rode to power on Telangana statehood sentiment, have dubbed the TDP an “Andhra party”.
Rao said the principal campaign theme for the BJP would be that TRS has not fulfilled its promises to the people of Telangana, where it is “simply perpetuating family rule”.
“Much like the Congress, TDP, MIM (led by Hyderabad Lok Sabha member Asaduddin Owaisi) and every other party, TRS is also a family shop”, Rao said.
It would be the BJP as a political party versus “family enterprises of different families—Gandhi family (Congress), (Chandrababu) Naidu family, KCR (K Chandrasekhar Rao) family, he said.
The entire pursuit of all other political parties, including TRS and the Congress, is “family development”, whereas the BJP was the only party working for the welfare of Telangana people, he claimed.
“We will not perpetuate family rule here (in Telangana)”, the BJP leader said.
The assembly was dissolved on September 6 on the recommendation of the state government, with the TRS opting for early elections.
Telangana was supposed to go for polls next year along with the Lok Sabha elections. The Election Commission is yet to announce the state polls schedule.
A team from the commission, led by Senior Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha, was here last week to assess the preparation for elections and held discussions with the state administration and various political parties.