HYDERABAD: Three opposition parties in Telangana — the Congress, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and the Communist Party of India (CPI) — on Tuesday announced the formation of 'Maha Kootami' (grand alliance) in an attempt to fight the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), that has almost become a political juggernaut in the State, in the ensuing assembly elections.
Scripting a new chapter in the history of Telugu politics, the once arch rivals -- Congress and TDP held a joint meeting in Hyderabad on Tuesday.
Held to discuss about the modalities of pre-poll alliance, Congress and TDP decided to come up with a common manifesto during the meeting.
Along with TPCC president N Uttam Kumar Reddy, TTDP President L Ramana, CPI State Secretary Chada Venkat Reddy and others participated in the meeting. This is the first meeting held after the decision to form a grand alliance was made. As TDP is joining hands with Congress, putting an end to 36-year-long enmity with Congress, this meeting created a buzz in political circles in not just Telangana but also in Andhra Pradesh.
READ HERE: TTDP and CPI shake hands
"Congress party has joined hands with TDP to put an end to the atrocious and dictatorial rule of KCR in Telangana. Our motive is to unite not just political parties but also civil society organisations, employee and student organisations and activists to fight against TRS. We have held preliminary discussions today with TDP and CPI and have agreed to come up with a common manifesto," said Uttam Kumar Reddy, speaking to media after an hour-long meeting at Park Hyatt.
As this was a preliminary meeting, much of the focus was on striking a partnership and putting up a united show, to prepare workers from both parties for the alliance. Besides discussing about the alliance, the leaders also decided to raise the issue of missing votes.
"Though Congress and TDP were rivals for decades, the political situation has changed now necessitating an alliance between both. KCR is using all means and brazenly misusing power to suppress opposition parties. People are fed up with KCR's autocratic rule. Therefore Congress and TDP's alliance has become a historic necessity. We are ready to rise above our self-interests and work for the alliance, to dethrone KCR," said E Peddi Reddy, senior TDP leader, who was part of the meeting, speaking to Express.
While Congress is playing the Big Brother role in forging a grand alliance in Telangana, it might take some more time to get a clarity on seat sharing and other details. Professor Kodandram's TJS is also set to join the alliance.