Chandrababu Naidu’s support for NDA may suggest a significant realignment of Indian polity.
If recent media reports are to be believed, former Andhra Pradesh (AP) Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu may return to the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA). Launching a scathing attack on the Congress party, Naidu recently met BJP president Rajnath Singh. That Naidu has not explicitly ruled out an alliance with the BJP itself is good news for the party considering its pariah status. While Chandrababu Naidu’s popularity in AP is a matter of conjecture—especially with the division of the state and the rise of Jaganmohan Reddy— it may indicate a significant realignment of the political forces. For three reasons.
First, it may be hard to believe but only two decades back, the Left and the BJP had constructed a grand alliance under the leadership of V P Singh against the Rajiv Gandhi government. There was little ideological affinity between the two parties; they were motivated by only one factor: anti-Congressism. As the Congress was a colossus on the national stage, the opposition had little alternative but to come together despite its own ideological differences and disparate policies. The only concern was throwing out the Congress government—the rest was a matter of detail.