- Will YSRCP join NDA?
- Will it lead to clear formation of two coalitions in AP?
Amaravati : Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy would be visiting Delhi on Tuesday to have talks with Union Home Minister Amit Shah. He will be leaving Gannavaram airport at 2 pm by a special flight to reach Delhi by 4 pm. The meeting with the home minister is scheduled at 9 pm. The chief minister would stay there for tomorrow night and return on Wednesday.
YSRCP among BJP’s new friends
Jagan Mohan Reddy visited Delhi a few weeks ago to have talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. In fact, he met the union home minister twice on consecutive days. The possibility of YSRCP joining the NDA is being debated in political circles ever since Jagan’s last visit to Delhi. Old and time-tested allies such as Shiv Sena and Akali Dal had deserted NDA due to various reasons. Shiv Sena was roped in by Sharad Pawar to head a coalition government headed by the party founded by Bal Thackeray which has Pawar’s Nationalist Congress Party and the National Congress Party as partners. Akali Dal had to leave the coalition because of its differences on the farm bills which were opposed by the farmers back in Punjab. Later the bills became laws and the Punjab farmers are up in arms against the NDA government. Since Akalis left the NDA, Modi and Shah have been looking around for new friends.
Not the first secular leader to join NDA
Jagan Mohan Reddy who rebelled against Sonia Gandhi and her Congress party and founded his own party is a natural friend of the BJP since he could not be friends with a person who had put him in jail for 16 months. However, he has a problem to directly align with the BJP since he is basically a secular politician. BJP has been having alliance with almost all the secular parties in the country one time or the other except the Congress. Most of the regional parties have been working with the saffron party. In Andhra Pradesh itself, the TDP which was in power during 2014-2019 was sharing power at the centre with the BJP for almost four years before it fell out of the BJP led alliance. TDP was part of the NDA headed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee also. Nitish Kumar of Bihar, Mayawati of UP, Karunanidhi and Jayalalithaa of Tamil Nadu had alliance with the BJP. Jagan Mohan Reddy would not be the first secular leader to work with the BJP.
Two clear coalitions in AP
If YCP opts to join the NDA, the Andhra Pradesh is likely to have two clear coalitions in time for 2024 elections- one led by Jagan Mohan Reddy comprising BJP. The Jana Sena led by Pawan Kalyan, which is an ally of the BJP now, will have to take a stand. He might go back to the TDP fold and be a partner of the Opposition alliance locally led by TDP chief Nara Chandrababu Naidu. The Opposition alliance will have, besides TDP and Jana Sena, the Congress and both the Communist parties. It will be a battle between two equally equipped sides.
Who are the two MPs to get into the cabinet?
In case Jagan Mohan Reddy gives his consent to join the NDA , he has to give two names also. Just as the TDP, YCP also would be given two berths in the Cabinet, one cabinet minister and other minister of State. It would be interesting to watch whether it would be Vijay Sai Reddy, the second most important leader in the party after the chief minister , or someone else to get into the NDA cabinet. Who would get a berth of minister of State also is question that is being debated.