BJP, TDP come to fresh agreement in Seemandhra

Last Updated 18 April 2014, 21:03 IST

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) have thrashed out a fresh deal, saving their alliance in Seemandhra that seemed almost broken on Thursday following Chandrababu Naidu’s announcement of a unilateral pullout.

BJP’s Prakash Javadekar and TDP’s Sujana Chowdhury sat on a ten-hour marathon negotiation to arrive at a deal that would essentially be a face-saver for the Telugu Desam Party, which was forced to show something for the stunt it had pulled by announcing the snapping of ties with the saffron party in Seemandhra region.

The fresh deal would allow BJP to contest in 13 Assembly seats and four Lok Sabha seats in Seemandhra. The party has surrendered one Assembly seat to its alliance partner following assurances that it would be given two MLC seats post elections.

The saffron party has agreed to return the Ichapuram Assembly seat in favour of the son of late TDP leader Yerran Naidu.

Rejecting TDP’s demand that it should return five Assembly constituencies, the BJP instead agreed to change its candidates in Rajahmundry (urban), Narasaraopeta and Guntakal.

The change was forced on it as Chandrababu Naidu felt that the BJP had fielded weaker candidates who would spoil the chances of the TDP Lok Sabha nominee.

“Right now, the Telugu Desam Party has assured us that it would give us two or Three MLC seats or even a Rajya Sabha seat,” a BJP Seemandhra leader said.
As per the fresh deal, the saffron party would contest in Narsapur, Araku, Tirupati and Rajampet Lok Sabha constituencies, besides the 13 Assembly segments.

NTR’s daughter D Purandeswari, who left the Congress to join the BJP and had recently announced that she was free to contest from the Vijayawada seat, found her hopes dashed after the latest negotiations as she was allotted Rajampet in Kadapa.

Handling a crisis

BJP sources said that Naidu was particularly incensed by the way the BJP treated the crisis in Andhra.

While party president Rajnath Singh rushed to Tamil Nadu to solve a similar situation there, the saffron party has deputed Javadekar to troubleshoot things here.

BJP also refused to nominate businessman Raghuram Krishnam Raju in Narsapur Lok Sabha seat, leaving the angry Raghuram to file his nomination papers in the constituency as an independent.

Meanwhile, Naidu’s decision to ignore Nandamuri Harikrishna for the elections has prompted the older NTR scion to send feelers to BJP through his sister Purandeswari.

By contrast, Naidu has fielded Balakrishna, the younger brother of Harikrishna, from Hindupur.

(Published 18 April 2014, 21:03 IST)

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