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Will Chandrababu Naidu become NDA's convenor ?
During his recent New Delhi visit Telugu Desam Party president and former chief minister of Andhra Pradesh N Chandrababu Naidu has succeeded in reviving his relations with the principle opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

Though he is trying to show his meeting with BJP president Rajnath Singh as a formal meeting in the way how he met with leaders of Left and other political parties to apprise them on the prevailing contentious situation in Andhra Pradesh, his one to one meeting with BJP Rajnath Singh leaving other TDP leaders out-side giving scope that he cemented his prospects of playing key role in BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in the days to come.

Some national news channels and newspapers also predicted that BJP is ready to make him as NDA Convenor. The position is presently kept vacant after Sharad Yadav of JD(U) quit the post following his party’s decision to left NDA protesting against BJP decision to make Narendra Modi as its campaign committee chairman. 

In mid-90s Naidu had played a prominent role in the national politics being the Convenor of the United Front coalition.

He walked out from alliance with BJP after the defeat of BJP at the center and TDP in the state in 2004 elections. On several occasions he categorically stated that it was due to his distance from minority community following 2002 Gujarat riots, due to his association with BJP he was defeated.

Many a times he tried to please minorities stating that in his life-time he will not return back to BJP fold. Even two months ago also he had ruled out any possibility of joining hands with BJP.

Everyone expects that once the BJP decided to project Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, who was in the mid of 2002 storm, as the Prime Ministerial candidate for the party, there would be no scope for Naidu to look towards BJP.

But surprisingly, he is the only prominent political leader in India who did not make any comment on BJP’s decision about Modi and in fact started making efforts to reach him for a political tie-up. After a gap of 9 years, for the first time on September 21, he was seen meeting a senior BJP functionary, its national president Rajnath Singh in New Delhi.

Sources indicating that even before this meeting, Naidu succeeded in reaching with Narendra Modi through mediation of one NRI supporter and discussing on working together in 2014 polls. There were also news reports to suggest very soon, he will be sharing a dais with Narendra Modi in a programme.

Without discounting possibility of reviving his alliance with BJP, he simply states that “this is not the time to discuss on political alliances”.

According to some sources, during his meeting with Sharad Yadav and leaders of CPI(M) and CPI also he indicated his intention to join hands with BJP stressing that the need of the hour is that all non-Congress parties to come together to put an end to Congress misrule in the country.

After Congress Working Committee resolution favouring creation of Telangana state on July 30, Chandrababu Naidu realized that his party is bound to marginalize in both the regions of Andhra Pradesh. He found left parties are not so keen to join with him and his aspirations to play national role again as motivator for third frond also seems futile with shrinking influence of left parties.

With the overwhelming support witnessed towards Narendra Modi from various cross sections of the society, he felt that BJP will help him at this crucial juncture to register political gains in his state.

After leading Telugu Desam party to defeat in the last two elections, it would be difficult task for him to keep the party cadre spirits alive without ensuring success at least this time. Under Chadnrababu Naidu’s leadership till now only once Telugu Desam succeeded to register impressive poll gains in 1999 by returning to power.

But that was possible due to image of the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, having alliance with BJP. At a time when the party leaders and cadre losing hopes on the ability of Chadnrababu Naidu to lead the party towards success, he is finding Narendra Modi’s popularity as a God gift opportunity.

According to sources, Chandrababu Naidu directly reached Narendra Modi through an NRI supporter and informally finalized a poll-pack. Telugu Desam’s support also seems to strengthen Narendra Modi’s position within his own party.

He is expected to cement his position in the party if TDP comes on board. His in-house rivals as much as those in other parties had labeled him as politically untouchable after Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's JD(U) severed its 17-year-old ties with BJP in opposition to Modi's elevation.

However, BJP cadre in Andhra Pradesh are seems to be upset with this development. They felt it was due to alliance with TDP in 1999 they lost a golden opportunity in the state to emerge as a major political force. They fear that Chadnrababu Naidu will do whatever needed to check BJP improving its strength in the state using his clout with the BJP top leadership.

Chandrababu Naidu is reportedly expecting BJP’s senior leader and former national president M Venkaiah Naidu from the state will come to his rescue to cool down tempers of state party leadership in this regard.

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