Amid growing discontent among masses with the incumbent Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy, Chandrababu Naidu is re-emerging as a promising leader to take the state forward, in the future. The Telugu Desam Party’s (TDP) president (and a former 3-time Chief Minister of the state), is rallying his party and followers to offer strong opposition to the mayhem created by members of the ruling Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP), in the state.
Chandrababu Naidu comes out strongly against Reddy’s government:
Recently, Chandrababu Naidu organised a 36-hour long protest against attacks on his party offices in the state. He demanded intervention of the central government in the matter, as according to him, attacks on his party office were acts of ‘state-sponsored terrorism’. Stressing on the fact that the attacks were not sporadic incidents, but rather a part of orchestrated attacks to instil fear in the minds of opposition, he pointed out the recent criticism of the ruling government by his party members as the main reason behind it.
Naidu demands President’s rule in the state:
Chandrababu Naidu has officially requested for President’s rule in Andhra Pradesh. In his letter to President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah, he wrote “current situation of widespread lawlessness constitutes an apt case for the imposition of Article 356 (President Rule),” He added, “If left unchecked, state-sponsored violence will only escalate further and spill across state borders, threatening national security. Thus, there is a complete failure of law and order along with the breakdown of constitutional machinery in Andhra Pradesh. This current situation of widespread lawlessness constitutes an apt case for the imposition of Article 356,”.
His further demands included a probe from CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation) on the attacks over his party offices, and protection from central police forces for the offices belonging to key leaders of the state’s opposition parties.
Reddy’s government has been a failure:
Ever since Jagan Mohan Reddy came to power in 2019, there has been an environment of lawlessness in the state. Chandrababu Naidu’s 6-page letter to key office bearers of the central government has well documented what he terms as “two-and-half years of lawlessness and anarchy”. Other than his failure of not being able to control law and order, Reddy’s minority appeasement politics have been making headlines. As reported by the TFI, the politics of appeasement hurt the people of Andhra Pradesh inconsolably, with the state currently under severe debt crisis. Till January 2021, the policies along with Reddy’s incompetence ended up wiping out a whopping Rs. 3.73 lakh crores from the state government’s coffers.
Chandrababu Naidu – the architect of Andhra politics:
Chandrababu Naidu has been a constant feature of Andhra Pradesh’s politics since 1975. From 1995 to 2004, he twice held the post of Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh. His third term as Chief Minister was between 2014-19. During Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s tenure as the Prime Minister of India, TDP, led by Naidu, was the second-largest party in the NDA (National Democratic Alliance) coalition led by the BJP. TDP was also a key member of the current NDA till 2018, when Naidu quit the coalition due to differences with the centre.
He is highly credited for shaping the foundations of modern-day Hyderabad (now in Telangana). Moreover, his schemes and other innovative projects during his stints as the Chief Minister are still highly appreciated by various business leaders and people of both the Telugu-speaking states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
Read more: The Rise and Fall of Nara Chandrababu Naidu
Pawan Kalyan and Andhra politics:
After Naidu quit the NDA in 2018, BJP decided to contest the 2019 Andhra Pradesh elections, on its own. However, the party could not make a mark in the elections. In 2020, BJP formed an alliance with Pawan Kalyan’s Jana Sena Party, in an attempt to cash in on Kalyan’s massive popularity as an actor in south India.
Pawan Kalyan’s party, which had also contested the 2019 elections, had won just a single seat out of 140 seats. To add insult to injury, the sole winner from the party, Rapaka Vara Prasada Rao, later defected to YSRCP. Currently, as always in the past, Pawan Kalyan does not look much serious about the state’s politics. With his erratic and unstable political approach, Kalyan’s political career looks set to follow his brother Chiranjeevi’s path, who had also launched his own party in 2008, with disastrous results. Chiranjeevi’s Praja Rajyam Party later merged with the Indian National Congress, in 2011. He hasn’t been active in state politics, since 2014.
Pawan Kalyan’s not so clear stance on various policies of the current state government, especially the government’s indirect support and bias towards Christian missionaries, has cast massive doubts in the minds of people, regarding his true intentions. Moreover, Chandrababu Naidu has already expressed his regret over leaving the NDA. In politics, a popular on-the-ground leader will always prove to be a better ally when it comes to earning votes from the local populace. Looking at Naidu’s inclination towards NDA, the BJP should not let the people of Andhra Pradesh down and should consider reviving the amicable bond that the BJP and TDP once used to share. An alliance between BJP and TDP will be a win-win situation for both the parties in state, and it will undoubtedly play an enormous role in the 2024 Indian general election.