N Chandrababu Naidu sets sights on reviving TDP in Telangana

In the 2023 Assembly polls in Telangana, the TDP had refrained from contesting, prompting political pundits to write obituaries to the party in the state.
Last Updated : 10 July 2024, 03:13 IST

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Hyderabad: After a resounding comeback in Andhra Pradesh, TDP supremo N Chandrababu Naidu has set his sights on Telangana. Naidu had discussions on reviving the party in the state during his interactions with cadres and some important leaders during his two-day stay in Hyderabad.

In the 2023 Assembly polls in Telangana, the TDP had refrained from contesting, prompting political pundits to write obituaries to the party in the state. Cut to 2024, a historic win in neighbouring Andhra Pradesh has prompted Naidu to renew his focus on Telangana.

After the state bifurcation in 2014, the TDP, which carried the baggage and tag of 'Andhra Party', was seen to have lost its relevance in Telangana. In the 2018 Assembly polls, the TDP contested in alliance with Congress and polled around 3.5 per cent votes while winning just two seats. At that time, it had contested only 13 seats.

It will still be a challenge for the TDP, which carries the ‘Andhra Party’ tag, to grow in Telangana.

As the former ruling party BRS has weakened in certain parts of Telangana and TDP enjoys patronage among Andhra settlers in the Greater Hyderabad region, interesting times are ahead in the state politics.

It was in the Greater Hyderabad region that BRS had recorded a good strike rate in last year's Assembly polls. Notably, in Andhra Pradesh TDP is an ally of BJP which has been gaining ground in Telangana with the downfall of BRS.

Legendary actor NT Rama Rao, who is called NTR, launched TDP on March 29, 1982, in Hyderabad with 'Telugu self-respect' and 'Telugu pride' planks. After the state's bifurcation in 2014, NTR's son-in-law and party president Naidu has been trying to keep the party afloat in both Telugu-speaking states. His prime focus, however, remained on Andhra.

When the then-YSRCP government arrested Naidu last year in connection with an  alleged scam in the Skill Development Corporation, a large gathering of Andhra settlers and the IT crowd in Hyderabad had stood in solidarity with Naidu, rekindling the party's hopes of revival in Telangana.

On last Sunday, party leaders and cadre gave Naidu a rousing reception when he visited the NTR Trust Bhavan, the TDP headquarters in Hyderabad, after taking office as the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh.

Stating that both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh were "two eyes" for him, Naidu expressed happiness that the cadre in Telangana was still "very active", though the TDP had not been in power for 20 years, since 2004. "I will always remember the unwavering support you all gave me in Hyderabad during my arrest. Over one lakh people gathered in Gachibowli to extend their support to me. I will soon restructure the party in Telangana," the TDP chief told a party meeting in Hyderabad.

TDP national spokesperson Jyotsna Tirunagari told DH that the party believed there was space and vacuum in Telangana, and the TDP could fill that void. "People now prioritise development over other concerns and sentiments. The development that was done by the erstwhile TDP government in and around Hyderabad and that was continued by the successful governments in this state is still visible." 

Published 10 July 2024, 03:13 IST

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