Why Did AP CM Accept Package?
- What are the two fresh laddus BJP offered Naidu?
Vijayawada: Why did Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Nara Chandrababu Naidu accept the package offered by Central Government? Naidu was saying repeatedly that he will not accept anything other than special status to the State.
According to reliable sources, two offers from the Centre tempted him to accept special assistance.
As everybody knows, 100 percent financial assistance to Polavaram project is, of course, there to take. It is mandatory on the part of the Centre. The BJP offered two fresh laddus to Naidu and not the rotten ones as alleged by Pawan Kalyan at his recently held public meeting at Kakinada.
One of the two reasons for Naidu accepting the package or special assistance in lieu of special status was handing over the responsibility of completing Polavaram project to the State govt. with total financial assistance from the Centre which will be very much useful to meet financial burden of next elections. Though, overall control from Centre will be there, the State will have leverage in execution of the project.
The second, and the most important, reason is the political aspect, which was not recognised by many. Another offer from the Centre pertains to increasing the number of Assembly seats by fifty. This offer is very attractive for Naidu politically. If this offer is implemented he can retain all his MLA and those who crossed over from the YSRCP. Otherwise there would be many leaders in the TDP who will be forced to desert the party and join the YSRCP in the second half of 2018.
Many sitting legislators crossed over to the TDP from YSRCP on an assurance that they will be given tickets in next elections. Some of the very important leaders like Anam and Nehru from Congress also joined on the same ground seeing no future for the Congress party in AP.
To suppress dissidence within the party, Naidu assured them that he would accommodate the MLAs who won in the TDP ticket as well as those who were elected on the YSRCP symbol but chose to defect to the TDP since the Assembly seats would be increased as promised in the AP Reorganisation Act. But the Centre was not forthcoming with any assurance on the enhancement of seats with an excuse that the Election Commission has to accept the proposal and a Constitutional amendment would be needed. Many leaders from other parties were in second thoughts about the idea of joining the TDP due to uncertainty about their political future.
There are many TDP leaders who are waiting for MLC posts. They were assured of berths in Upper House during the last elections. Elections for the Legislative Council will take place in 2017 and 2019 before next Assembly elections. But all the aspirants cannot get berths. And some leaders are keen on contesting for Assembly. Though the CM had represented many times to the Centre about seats enhancement there was no assurance on it.
When Naidu was reluctant to accept package, the Center brought this much awaited issue before him. He accepted with great alacrity since enhancement is seats would give a lot of political relief.
Chandrababu Naidu was happy after he got assurance from Centre in enhancement of seats before the next elections if he accepts Centre’s proposal on package. Though Chandrababu Naidu knows pretty well that a package is not an alternative to special status, he thought in terms of political expedience and financial gain. Enhancement of Assembly seats and handing over Polavaram project to the State government are good bargain that would help his and his son’s political future.
Another important political development took place after accepting Centre’s package by Chandrababu Naidu. Until now it was rumoured and believed in some circles that there is a possibility of BJP joining hands with YSRCP in next elections.
It is because YS Jagan Mohan Reddy never criticised the Centre or Prime Minister Narendra Modi. It may be because of his cases or thinking on future political tie-ups. But with recent developments, BJP has no option except to sail with the TDP as the main plank of YSRCP in next elections would be special status for the State on which issue BJP’s stand is very clear. It is against the special status.
Though it is too early to predict, YSRCP is all set to associate with Left parties in next elections. Since film actor and Jana Sena president Pawan Kalyan categorically announced that his party will contest in next elections, it is to be seen whether the Left will align with the YSRCP or Jana Sena as Pawan was repeatedly praising the Left while attacking the BJP. Now that BJP lost hopes on Pawan Kalyan, it has no option except to go with the TDP by bargaining for more seats in lieu of enhancement in Assembly seats. The possibility of the Jana Sena, the Left and The YSRCP joining hands against TDP-BJP combine cannot be ruled out at this stage. But the ego trips and chief ministerial ambitions of both the young men might come in the way. Much water wolud flow in Krishna and Godavari in the next few months giving scope to unforeseen political equations.