Bid on to revive non-BJP, non-Cong entity in case of fractured verdict
With just two phases of Lok Sabha polls remaining, there is an attempt to revive the idea of a non-BJP and non-Congress “federal front” that could occupy centre stage in the Government formation in case of a fractured verdict by the voters.
After holding talks with Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao (KCR) is trying to hold similar parleys with DMK chief Stalin in Chennai. There is no official confirmation about the meeting so far, but sources said it may take place on May 13 if Stalin agrees to hold talks with the TRS chief, who is seen close to the BJP camp.
Meanwhile, Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy has also contacted KCR and expressed his willingness to hold talks with him on formulating Opposition’s future course of action in case of a split verdict at the Centre.
Congress sources said the party will be ready to extend support to any formulation like a “federal front” if it could become platform to keep BJP out of power. A senior Congress leader said none of the major political parties — the BJP and the Congress — are likely to get the numbers to form a Government. “That would make the so-called federal front a viable alternative,” he said.
“In that case the grand old party will not hesitate to repeat Karnataka and we may extend support to the federal front,” said the leader.
In Karnataka Assembly polls last year when the BJP, despite being the single largest party, could not form a Government, the Congress extended its support to the third largest party giving an opportunity to Kumaraswamy to be the CM.
In March, KCR had mooted the idea of a “federal front” and initiated efforts to provide an alternative to both the BJP and the Congress and subsequently met leaders of Trinamool Congress, Biju Janta Dal, Samajwadi Party, Janata Dal (S) and DMK. Sources said he also invited the YSR Congress Party to join the proposed front.
“With the Lok Sabha election results to be declared on May 23, KCR is planning meetings with leaders of various parties to prepare the ground for formation of a non-BJP, non-Congress Government.
While a National Front (NF) coalition led by Janata Dal formed a Government between 1989 and 1990 with VP Singh and Chandra Shekhar as Prime Ministers, a United Front Government was formed between 1996-98 with HD Deve Gowda and IK Gujral as PMs. The parties in the Front were Janata Dal, Telugu Desam Party, DMK, Asom Gana Parishad and Indian Congress (Socialist). They were supported from outside by the Left Front and the BJP.
Wednesday, 08 May 2019 | Deepak Kumar Jha | New Delhi