Kumaraswamy, Chandrababu Naidu discuss anti-BJP front
After meeting Kumaraswamy, TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu said they want more regional parties to join the front. He suggested that as a first step, efforts would be made to bring all regional parties in south India to join hands to prevent the growth of the BJP in the region.india Updated: Aug 31, 2018 21:52 IST
Stepping up efforts to build a “mahaghatbandhan” or grand alliance of all regional parties at the national level, Telugu Desam Party (TDP) president and Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Friday held talks with Janata Dal (Secular) leader and Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy in Vijayawada.
Kumaraswamy and his family were in Vijayawada to visit the Kanaka Durga temple on Indrakeeladri hill on the banks of the Krishna river. He was received by Andhra Pradesh ministers P Pulla Rao and D Umamaheshwar Rao, Krishna district collector Lakshmikantham and others at the Gannavaram airport.
Before visiting the temple, the Karnataka chief minister had a 40-minute discussion with Naidu at a hotel to discuss the ongoing exercise to build a grand alliance of regional parties.
“We had an initial round of discussions on the modalities of an anti-BJP front to be formed at the national level. We want more regional parties to join this front. Our sole objective is to prevent the return of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) for a second term at the Centre,” Naidu, an erstwhile ally of the NDA, told reporters after the meeting.
Naidu suggested that as a first step, efforts would be made to bring all regional parties in south India to join hands to prevent the growth of the BJP in the region. “We will continue our discussions in the coming days,” he said.
Kumaraswamy said JD (S) had been a friend of the TDP for a long time and that both share a common ideology. He said the exercise to bring all regional parties together had already begun and Friday’s meeting was a continuation of the efforts.
“We have a common goal of defeating the NDA. We are trying to bring as many regional parties as possible into our fold to build up a strong front,” he said.
Kumaraswamy said the decision on a prime ministerial candidate would be taken only after the elections. “We are now focusing on defeating the NDA. After the elections, we all sit together and decide who the PM candidate should be,” he said.
The TDP has enjoyed a good relationship with the JD (S) since the days of United Front of which both were a part. Naidu attended the swearing-in ceremony of Kumaraswamy as Karnataka chief minister at Bengaluru in April this year, where he met several opposition leaders including Delhi CM, Arvind Kejriwal, West Bengal CM, Mamata Banerjee, and BSP president, Mayawati, to have an informal discussion on bringing non-NDA parties together.
In March this year, the TDP parted ways with the BJP claiming the central government had given a raw deal to the bifurcated state of Andhra Pradesh.
First Published: Aug 31, 2018 21:43 IST