Akali Dal MP Naresh Gujral takes on BJP, supports TDP

Rajnath Singh

After his announcement last month that the Sena will contest the next Assembly as well as Lok Sabha polls alone, Mr Thackeray said there was a debate now as to who would be the loser from the decision, his party or the BJP. But he gave the BJP a fright.

Over the weekend, the TDP went into an ominous huddle after alleging that Andhra Pradesh has been neglected in the Union Budget presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday.

Earlier on Monday, as a part of their agitation for justice for the state, MPs of the Telugu Desam gave notice under Rule 193 asking for the conduction of a special discussion on the implementation of promises made to Andhra Pradesh.

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Machilipatnam MP Narayana Rao informed that the party leaders will continue to hold protests if their pleas are not heard by the Centre. The Gujarat election was a pointer, and has been followed by the BJP's drubbing in the recent Rajasthan byelections. Some TDP workers in Vijayawada tried to lay seize of BJP MLC Somu Veerraju for making strong allegations against Chandrababu Naidu and the TDP party. Besides, the TDP is confident of winning the Muslim vote, as was demonstrated in the Nandyal byelection. According to these leaders, the issues concerned were a poor budgetary allocation to the state, delay in implementation of many provisions in favour of the state, and promises made by the Centre to develop the state. The TDP decided not to pull the plug, and wait instead to see what the Centre offers as financial support to keep the relationship going. TDP party leader CM Ramesh told NDTV, "We have been given a raw deal and we will be disrupting parliament from tomorrow if our demands are not met".

Lately, the Akali Dal has also spoken of "coalition dharma" and supported the TDP's cause.

It is evidently clear that the Telugu Desam Party happens to be the BJP's biggest ally in the South. Nobody from any of the allies have been offered either governorship or lieutenant governorship", Mr Gujral said, adding, "the days of single-party dominance are over.

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