The political contours of Telangana look to go through a reshape, and the incident that shook the otherwise mundane politics here, was the entry of Telangana Telugu Desam Party (TTDP) president Revanth Reddy into Congress.
Though Mr. Reddy managed to get several prominent TTDP leaders along with him, there seems to be a rush to get the leftovers, particularly the middle-level cadre and the grassroots party activists, into other parties. While the inflow into Congress continues, the TRS has drawn up a programme to attract the maximum cadre to their fold with Ministers themselves vigorously pursuing the issue.
Mr. Revanth’s shift was unique in the three-year-old Telangana State given the fact that he moved to an Opposition party rather than the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) that saw 12 TDP MLAs, three YSRCP MLAs and 8 Congress MLAs and from CPI defecting to it after the Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao boldly announced that TRS was no more an ‘agitational outfit’ but an out and out political party.
The biggest beneficiary is likely to be the Congress with inflows from various parties, and the party cadre certainly sound galvanised though some of the top leaders look nervous, apparently fearing competition from Mr. Revanth Reddy for the big stakes. That he has brought along with him a dozen leaders including former MLAs, MLCs and also former Ministers with some hold in their respective constituencies has unnerved many seniors.
It is now reinforced that Congress has emerged as the only alternative to TRS if not established totally, says a senior Congress leader. But the developing political situation has given confidence to several middle rung leaders in other parties to look towards Congress as the elections come close, he argues. Senior leaders are unwilling to name the leaders from other parties showing interest in Congress but it is quite clear that hectic efforts are on to convince former Congress leaders with some weight in their constituencies to come back to the party. These include leaders dissatisfied with the TRS leadership and the Government for various reasons.
Assurance of seat
A section of BJP leaders are leaning towards the Congress but the major hurdle is the assurance of a seat, a pre-condition many seem to be putting. The TPCC president N. Uttam Kumar Reddy also agreed in his informal chats that except in some constituencies the party is unable to assure a seat to anyone coming from other parties.
However, a clear picture of how Congress will accommodate the aspirants from other parties is likely to emerge after Mr. Rahul Gandhi’s meeting in Warangal in the third week of November. His tour will surely infuse new life into the party more so with the recent developments.