Hyderabad: Utter bankruptcy of ideas, total absence of genuine issues to pick on and focusing on divisive politics just about sums up BJP president Amit Shah’s visit to the State. Be it his vitriolic attack on the Kalvakuntla family or his ‘belief’ that the TRS was going for ‘early’ elections because it was scared to face the electorate in the summer of 2019, Shah’s words exposed the frustration and helplessness that the BJP faces in not being able to gain a foothold in the new State.
For Shah, the popularity of Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao and the confidence the TRS government enjoys among the people must be particularly difficult to digest since he had, not very long ago, declared that Telangana would be the gateway to the South for the party.
It is ironic for the BJP president to raise the ‘early’ election controversy, particularly since it was the BJP which had fuelled speculation that the country could face elections this year end. But then, things went awfully wrong for the party with the Indian rupee dipping like never before and fuel prices sky-rocketing beyond the common man’s reach.
In any case, opting for election six months before the end of tenure does not really amount to early elections, a fact that the Chief Minister has pointed out often. Besides, holding election in the cooler climes is any day a better option than people queuing up before polling booths under the scorching summer sun in May, particularly in Telangana.
It is equally surprising for the BJP leader to claim that the TRS government had failed to meet the aspirations of the Telangana people. Shah, it seems, is unaware of the heaps of accolades that the TRS government has attracted for the various developmental programmes and welfare initiatives covering all sections of society. The appreciation for the government schemes have come from Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Cabinet colleagues down to Central officials and Chief Ministers of other States, not to speak of eminent personalities and experts from various fields.
Shah is also probably unaware of the fact that scores of officials from various States have been making a beeline to Telangana to study various projects like Mission Kakatiya, Mission Bhagiratha, Haritha Haram, among others, and are keen on replicating them in their respective States.
To state that Chandrashekhar Rao had only his ‘family’ in mind while calling for ‘early’ election only shows that the BJP has not been able to pin the TRS government on even a single issue. It has been acknowledged by the people that each one of them – KT Rama Rao, T Harish Rao and K Kavitha – have contributed in no small measure to the development of the State. KTR’s role in development of IT and industry in the State, Harish Rao’s back-breaking effort to complete irrigation projects in record time and Kavitha raising State issues in New Delhi effectively can’t be overlooked.
And very interestingly, Shah mentioned about BJP going it alone, but, he is aware that Chandrashekhar Rao has declared that the TRS would play a more active role at the Centre through a non-Congress, non-BJP front. So there was no question of any party joining hands with the BJP in Telangana.
The BJP president also made an attempt to create a divide among the people by raking up the Muslim reservation issue and his comments on ‘today’s Razakars’, referring to the MIM. It is a known fact that there has been peaceful co-existence between communities in Telangana, and that not a single major communal flare-up had been reported in the State in the past four-and-half years.
It would probably have helped the BJP if Shah, instead of indulging in political mudslinging, had spoken about what the party could do for the development of Telangana, the NDA’s plans to check the spiraling fuel costs and how it intends to pull the Indian economy out of the mess it is now, thanks to the demonetisation and the implementation of the GST regime, among other blunders.