KCR meets MK Stalin, more regional biggies on agenda: Why idea of non-Congress, non-BJP front is still far-fetched

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New Delhi | Updated: April 30, 2018 4:55:15 PM

According to media reports, KCR is also expected to meet Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, JD(S) president HD Deve Gowda, Samajwadi Party national president Akhilesh Yadav and JMM leader Hemant Soren to gather support to form a federal front.

Chandrasekhar Rao, DMK, Congress, BJP, MK Stalin, Karunanidhi, General elections, Samajwadi Party, Federal front, Opposition parties, Chandrababu NaiduTelangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao with DMK Working President MK Stalin (Source: ANI)

With the general elections inching closer, buzz around all regional political parties coming together to form a non-Congress and non-BJP front appears to be gaining momentum. On Sunday, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao called on DMK president M Karunanidhi and party’s working president MK Stalin in Chennai to discuss the current state of political affairs in the country. According to media reports, KCR is also expected to meet Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, JD(S) president HD Deve Gowda, Samajwadi Party national president Akhilesh Yadav and JMM leader Hemant Soren to gather support to form a federal front.

KCR, who has been trying to forge a front against the Congress and BJP, said that there will soon be a ‘federal front’ but ruled out any urgency in forming it. He, however, said that he is neither saying that the parties should go with the Congress nor leave it. He said that as of now, nothing like this has been suggested within the proposed front. He said that after holding discussions for the next two-three months, the parties will reach a consensus on what needs to done.

He also said that he will approach his Andhra Pradesh counterpart Chandrababu Naidu to discuss the front. Calling Naidu his ‘best friend’, KCR said that he is with him in his fight for the special status tag.

KCR’s efforts to bring all regional parties together to provide a possible alternative in 2019 general elections, however, does not appears to be an easy task. Most of the parties with whom he is trying to forge a front, were in the power with the Congress at some point or the other. The DMK is still a part of the Congress-led UPA. The Trinamool Congress, Samajwadi Party have also openly said that they are okay with backing the Congress.

But regional parties who are part of the ruling NDA and are said to be unhappy with the BJP, may choose to back KCR. The TDP which had quit the NDA last month over special status demand to Andhra, has also openly called for defeating the BJP. But the stand of such parties will more or less depend on the prospect of the front’s performance.

Moreover, inter-regional disputes between parties could make it difficult for leaders to share a common dais. On Cauvery issue, Tamil Nadu’s DMK and ruling AIADMK are on the same page but the JD(S) which is seeking to revive lost ground in Karnataka, is opposed to their stand. In terms of strength, regional parties comprise less than the half of the seats in the Lok Sabha. In such a scenario, KCR may find difficulty in chalking out strategy to make his idea work.

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