New Delhi: The BJP sees the resignations of two TDP ministers from the central government as an inevitable outcome driven by the regional party's "political compulsions" ahead of the Assembly polls in the state in 2019.
Andhra Pradesh BJP chief K Hari Babu said political one-upmanship has been going on in the state — an apparent reference to the war of words between TDP and its main rival YSR Congress — over the special category status, and said the ministers' resignations were more of a political ploy ahead of 2019's Assembly polls.
The Assembly polls in the state will be held along with the Lok Sabha election.
The saffron party, which has two Lok Sabha members from the state with 25 seats, is not much worried, its leaders said, over the prospect of fighting the elections without an ally.
"The BJP has potential to emerge as a third viable alternative in Andhra Pradesh and our track records in different states testify to this. We will continue to work for the people there to become a significant political force," its spokesperson GVL Narasimha Rao said.
As of now, the TDP remains a part of the NDA even after its decision to pull its ministers out of the government.
BJP sources said even if their party has to fight alone, it can only grow in a state where it has always had a marginal presence.
They also added that while the TDP remains a part of the NDA, the YSR Congress has also been friendly to the government in Parliament, which gives the BJP a unique political space as its main national rival, the Congress, remains a pariah for the two regional parties.
With the Centre slamming the door shut on Naidu's demand for special category status, he was left with little option but to escalate the matter as YSR Congress's chief Jaganmohan Reddy has been attacking him over the issue, the sources said.
"It was his political compulsion," they said.
The fact that the TDP has decided to remain a part of the NDA shows that the party is hedging its bets given the BJP's growing political clout at the national level ahead of the next Lok Sabha polls, they said.
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