Congress vows to ‘make up’ for Karnataka loss in Andhra: Moily

May 28th, 2008 - 4:03 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, May 28 (IANS) Senior Congress leader M. Veerappa Moily says his party will definitely “make up” for its loss in Karnataka in Andhra Pradesh where by-elections are due Thursday for 22 assembly and Lok Sabha seats. “We will definitely make up in these elections. It cannot be like Karnataka. The polls are absolutely localised,” Moily, who is in charge of Andhra Pradesh, told IANS.

But the Congress seems to be hovering in the shadows in Andhra Pradesh, with the Telegana Rashtriya Samiti (TRS), a former ally and partner in the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government, leading the charge from the front. The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) is not far behind.

On the surface, the Andhra Pradesh by-elections may seem too “micro” to tell on national political parties. But regional and micro identities, say analysts, cannot be dismissed as irrelevant in national politics.

The TRS, the first constituent to have pulled out of the UPA government, gave up its four Lok Sabha seats to protest what it said was a breach of promise by the Congress, to create a new state of Telengana.

“In an era of coalition politics sub-national aspirations are expressions of sentiments of trying to find political space, not just in assemblies but also in parliament,” Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, who has co-authored a book on coalition politics in India, told IANS.

For instance, if the TRS holds on to its position or manages to increase its space, the outcome will have a national impact.

“It would reflect how strong is the momentum for regional aspirations. And that would tell on politics in Delhi,” said Guha Thakurta.

“There is a possibility of a split in the TDP in the by-elections. A section within the party supporting Telengana may form a separate party. And this too will impact assembly and parliament elections next year,” said Sudhakar Reddy, deputy general secretary of the Communist Party of India (CPI).

Inundated with a flood of regional aspirations, the central government is planning a second states re-organisation committee. Unlike the first committee in 1956, this will be based on convenience of governance and geographical boundaries. The first states reorganisation committee carved out new states on the basis on linguistic considerations alone.

Next year, nine states - Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Karnataka and Kerala - will go to the polls. Together these states make up 351 seats in the 545-member Lok Sabha.

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