In an interesting development, the Communist Party of India (CPI) has become the hot favourite of both the Congress and the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS). However, the comrades seem to have decided that the Congress is a better bet than the pink party.
Initially, the CPI had wanted to be a part of a Congress-TRS grand alliance, but with the two parties parting ways, it appears that it is throwing its weight behind the ruling party.
With time running out, the CPI has initiated a dialogue with the Congress, making the TRS feel uncomfortable since the Left party. Though not a major force in Telangana, the Left could still give an edge to whichever party it aligns with.
Apparently keen on weaning away the CPI from the Congress, the TRS has reopened a dialogue with the party. TRS leaders K Keshava Rao and B Vinod Kumar held talks with CPI state secretary K Narayana on Monday, but they did not appear to have made much headway.
“Talks were held in a cordial atmosphere,” Keshav told reporters after the meeting. Narayana, however, rued that the proposals submitted earlier by his party to the TRS evoked no response, and wondered why there was no response from the TRS leadership when the senior leaders of the CPI tried to speak to them.
Later in the afternoon, Telangana Congress chief Ponnala Lakshmaiah, who arrived in Hyderabad from Delhi, went into a huddle with Narayana.
The CPI leader wanted three MP seats (Khammam, Nalgonda and Bhongir) and 22 Assembly seats, but the Congress is understood to have offered one MP and 12 Assembly seats. According to sources, talks are focused on which seats should be allotted to the CPI.
Narayana slammed the TRS leadership for “treating him badly”. After talks with Keshava Rao and Vinod Kumar in the morning, he made no secret of his displeasure.
“They do not even have time to return phone calls. We have already given a list of seats that we want, but the TRS leaders want us to put forth our proposal.
“It is nothing but a ploy to delay the process and keep us on the edge,” Narayana said.