Is Pawan Kalyan Out Of NDA Now?
Guntur: Is the Jana Sena President and Actor Pawan Kalyan out of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led NDA? This question is doing rounds in Andhra Pradesh, following Pawan Kalyan’s extending support to the Congress-sponsored meeting held in Guntur on June 4 in support of the Special Category Status (SCS) demand for the State.
The meeting was addressed by Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, JDU Leader Sharad Yadav, SP Leader Akhilesh Yadav, RJD Leader Jaya Prakash Yadav, DMK Leader Elangovan, CPI Secretary General Suravaram Sudhakar Reddy, besides others.
The leaders have extended support to the SCS demand for the State, a promise that was made by the then Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh in Parliament and was repeated by the BJP-TDP-Jana Sena alliance during the elections. Now, having come to power, the BJP-TDP have gone back on the promise. The BJP came forward with a special package for Andhra Pradesh in place of special status, and the TDP compromised. But then the demand failed to satisfy the people who are not ready to compromise with a special package.
The considerable turnout of the people for the Congress meet in Guntur indicates a strong desire among the people for special status. Though the Congress is comparatively weak in the state, special status demand and its continued fight for the same has come in handy for the party to have an impressive gathering for the meeting.
Besides the impressive crowd at the meeting, the support extended by Pawan Kalyan for the meeting helped the Congress’ meet to gain an upper hand in the state politics. Pawan Kalyan said he would continue to fight for special status and would back everyone who speaks on the issue.
The statement of the Jana Sena chief has come as a rude shock to the ruling TDP-BJP alliance. While the TDP and the BJP have gone back on the special status promise, the Jana Sena stood for the demand, which leads to a possibility of breakup in the alliance.
Pawan Kalyan’s statement in support of special status has already distanced his party from the NDA, while the party has moved closer with the Congress and the left parties. The Congress and the left have been fighting for special status right from the day one, while the YSR Congress has softened its stand in favour of NDA. It is now clear that in the days to come Jana Sena would join the fight for special status, along with the Congress, the CPI and the CPI-M, distancing itself from the NDA.