Hyderabad: At a time several parties are fighting against the CAA and the NRC, Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao and TD chief N. Chandrababu Naidu, who tried to build political unity with their own fronts before the elections, are strangely silent.
They had strongly believed that the BJP would not come to power after the Lok Sabha elections. Mr Rao had said Congress leader Rahul Gandhi would become the PM.
Mr Rao had floated the Federal Front to bring the anti-BJP, anti-Congress parties on to one platform. Mr Naidu, then AP chief minister, tried to unite all anti-BJP parties under the UPA umbrella to be led by the Congress.
Both met West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, DMK chief M.K. Stalin, UP former CMs Akhilesh Yadav and Mayawati, and JD(S) leaders H.D. Deve Gowda and H.D. Kumaraswamy.
Most of these leaders have individually expressed their positions against the CAA and the NRC but neither Rao nor Naidu have. Both appear to be in no mood to go against the BJP-led Centre. While Mr Rao’s stand is to maintain equal distance from both the BJP and the Congress and extend issue-based support to the NDA government, Mr Naidu appears eager to restore ties with the BJP. The TRS opposed the CAA in Parliament but the TD backed it.
Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar is close to both Mr Rao and Mr Naidu but they chose not to attend the swearing-in ceremony of the Siva Sena-NCP-Congress government. They also stayed away from Mr Hemant Soren’s swearing in as Jharkhand Chief Minister. Mr Soren was the first leader to extend support to the Federal Front.
However, in the case of Mr H.D. Kumaraswamy’s swearing-in ahead of his short-lived government, Mr Naidu went to the ceremony but Mr Rao stayed away only so that he would not be seen with the Congress.
Sources say Rao considered using the political situation to revive the Federal Front but was advised against it. His political advisers reportedly told him to maintain his stand of equal distance between the two principal parties.