Even as it strives to remain relevant to the Telangana issue, the state BJP is fighting off a bid by the CPI and TRS to nudge it out of the tent.
In recent weeks, the leftwing party, which supports separate statehood for Telangana, has sidled up to the Telangana Joint Action Committee (TJAC) and made militant noises on the Telangana issue.
The TRS too sees BJP as a rival for the Telangana turf.
Both the TRS and CPI have been barnstorming the state, telling voters to strengthen ‘secular forces’ -- code for ‘don’t vote BJP’.
CPI leaders in particular have been targeting the BJP in the party’s Praja Poru Yatra in Telangana.
This has only triggered a competitive response in the BJP.
The saffron party, which bills itself as the only party serious about separate statehood, is poised to take the Telangana issue to the national capital where it is poised to hold a three-day deeksha for separate statehood during Sept 3-5.
But for now the party is feeling a bit friendless.
Earlier this month, it organised a conclave of Telangana intellectuals but suffered the indignity of being pilloried by TJAC luminaries on its stop-start engagement with the issue.
“We are ready to work with all forces demanding separate Telangana but who will share our stage?” laments BJP state president G Kishan Reddy, underlining the quandary faced by the party.
The isolation moves by the TRS and CPI are putting the BJP in a spot of bother as it preps up for the 2014 general election.
Telangana aside, the BJP has also been apprehending an erosion of its nominal base in coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema. Therefore the worrylines have increased in the faces of the BJP’s stewards in the state. In the 30 years of its political journey, the BJP has tasted little success in AP. Its last taste of victory was in alliance with the TDP in the 1999 Assembly elections.