Why BJP believes there’s ‘opportunity to grow independently’ in Andhra
Bolstered by its success in the by-elections to Dubbak assembly seat and impressive show in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation elections in Telangana, the Bharatiya Janata Party has set its eyes on neighbouring Andhra Pradesh.
The state executive committee meeting of the BJP held at Tirupati on Saturday set the tone for a frontal attack on the YSR Congress Party government in Andhra Pradesh led by chief minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy.
“We shall form the next government in Andhra Pradesh. The present YSRCP government has completely ruined the state’s economy and development has come to a grinding halt,” senior BJP leader and former Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh said, addressing party functionaries of the state through virtual mode.
The temple town was chosen as the venue for the state executive committee meeting, keeping in mind the by-elections to Tirupati Lok Sabha seat, which has fallen vacant due to the sudden demise of YSRCP MP Balli Durgaprasada Rao due to Covid-19.
The BJP has been consistently raising the issues concerning the Tirumala temple, including attempts to dispose of temple properties and diversion of TTD funds for other activities, etc.
Raman Singh alleged that the YSRCP government had been hijacking the centrally funded schemes and claiming them as its own. “The state government is just renaming the central schemes and claiming credit for the same,” he said.
He lashed out at the YSRCP for blaming it on the Centre for non-completion of projects like Polavaram, besides raking up non-issues like special category status to AP.
Union minister and BJP in-charge of Andhra affairs V Muralidharan and several senior party leaders addressed the state executive committee meeting of the party at Tirupati.
The state executive committee of the BJP discussed the strategy to be adopted by the party in the by-elections to Tirupati seat. The party also organised a Shobha Yatra in Tirupati town in the evening to put up a big show.
A senior BJP leader said there was a clear political vacuum in Andhra Pradesh due to weakening of the Telugu Desam Party and the BJP could easily fill it and emerge as a potential force by 2024.
“Hitherto, we had no opportunity to grow as a force in AP, as we had an alliance with TDP in 1999 and 2014. Now, we have a chance to grow independently,” he said.