After an acrimonious split from the Congress and beating them at their own game in the recent bypolls, is Jaganmohan Reddy all set to form an alliance with the party again?
According to an Economic Times report, Congress party president Sonia Gandhi has already met once with Reddy’s mother Vijaya Lakshmi in an attempt to forge an alliance with the regional party ahead of the 2014 elections and despite the final decision not being made public, the report quoted a party leader saying that “it was a matter of time” before the two parties merged.
Congress leaders have refused to comment on the matter and YSR Congress leaders are quoted in the report as saying that it is merely a ploy to prevent the party from gathering more support in Andhra Pradesh.
While the Congress may be looking at the YSR Congress as another alliance in the state, there are other partners like Actor and Praja Rajyam Party president Chiranjeevi, who are already looking at the possibility of getting a greater role in the state government.
Reportedly, the actor has already blamed the Congress and Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy for their poor showing in the recent by-polls and is looking to get a greater say in the functioning of the state government.
For the Congress, an ally like the YSR Congress would help reduce the influence of Chiranjeevi but would also mean that the party would be considerably weakened in the state, which had become one of its strongholds during the tenure of YSR Reddy.
For Jaganmohan Reddy, who is presently in jail till 14 August over allegations of using his father’s influence to get investors to fund his companies, the alliance with the Congress may make little sense presently after roundly trouncing them in the by-polls in which the party won 15 Assembly seats. But an alliance could also help him get a greater say in national politics after the 2014 elections.
Once spurned by the Congress leadership when he sought the Chief Minister’s post, Jaganmohan Reddy, if he does merge with the party, is unlikely to accept anything less this time around.