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Wed. Sep 28th, 2022
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NEW DELHI: Amid brainstorming of opposition parties to give the country an alternative political platform for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) president K Chandrashekar Rao, ending speculations on Sunday, said he would launch a national party following more discussions with a cross section of society. The Telangana chief minister, popular as KCR, is fine-tuning his plan to launch the national party, likely to be named Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS), in a public meeting likely to be held in Hyderabad on October 5, the day of Dussehra.
Although KCR has been attacking the BJP for a while now, he first spoke of launching a national party in April during the TRS plenary. However, at a time when many opposition parties are coming together to challenge the BJP at the Centre, he plans to go it alone.
How will he do so?
TRS does not have elected representatives in other states. But the BJP in Telangana has been working aggressively to take on the ruling TRS and the saffron party emerged as a force to reckon with in Hyderabad municipal polls. It also managed to win two bypolls while the TRS won the other two. Moreover, the BJP leaders have also been touring Telangana vigorously.
If Rao does float a national party, it will be the first regional party from two Telugu states, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, to be converted into a national party.
The TRS said it would reach a consensus on “alternative national agenda” by continuing discussions with various stakeholders.
On Sunday, he held discussions with former Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy on the contours of the proposed outfit.
Rao made it clear that the launch of the party and formulation of policies would follow extended discussions with intellectuals, economists and experts from various fields.
An official release from Rao’s office said that discussions were held with a cross section of society similar to initiatives ahead of the launch of the movement to seek a separate state of Telangana and such deliberations would continue.

TRS senior leader Palla Rajeshwar Reddy said there have been requests from farmers, intelligensia, economists and retired civil servants to KCR to come up with a national party.
Sources in TRS said KCR will continue as chief minister even after launching the national party at least till the next assembly election. Later, he may contest a Lok Sabha seat.
The TRS state executive is expected to meet in the next couple of weeks and give powers to KCR to take any decision pertaining to conversion or merger of TRS into the new outfit, a senior TRS leader told TOI.
A ‘BJP-Mukt Bharat’
KCR has been making efforts to play a key role nationally for the past few years.
The move takes forward Rao’s ‘BJP-mukt Bharat’ (BJP-free India) pitch and follows deliberations with several leaders belonging to parties other than the BJP and Congress. He has been blaming the saffron party’s government at the Centre for the “ills” plaguing the country, attacking BJP, especially Prime Minister Narendra Modi in every public speech and even giving a call for ‘BJP-mukt Bharat’.
Interestingly, KCR had been talking of bringing all opposition parties under one umbrella for a ‘non-Congress, non-BJP’ alliance since late 2018. But he put the idea in cold storage after BJP’s massive win in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. He revived it recently and met several nationally relevant opposition leaders, including Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, Jharkhand’s Hemant Soren, Delhi’s Arvind Kejriwal, Shiv Sena’s Uddhav Thackeray, NCP chief Sharad Pawar, former prime minister HD Deva Gowda and Karnataka ex-chief minister HD Kumaraswamy.
On Sunday, Rao and Janata Dal (Secular) leader Kumaraswamy arrived at a consensus that an alternative political front at the national level should be stitched to achieve the goal of ‘BJP-Mukt Bharat’ in 2024 general elections.

Last month Telangana CM Rao met his Bihar counterpart Nitish Kumar, deputy CM and RJD leader Tejashwi Prasad Yadav and other senior leaders of the grand alliance in Patna amidst the ongoing political slugfest between the Grand Alliance and BJP in the state.
BJP jibe: KCR-mukt Telangana
BJP national general secretary and Telangana in-charge Tarun Chugh on Saturday said the people of the state have decided to have a ‘KCR-mukt Telangana’, therefore his obsession with the word “mukt”. “Instead of going here and there, KCR better plan his retirement … KCR is talking about ‘mukthi’ because he knows his days are numbered in Telangana,” he said.
In a statement, Chugh was referring to the CM’s recent visit to Bihar. “KCR seems to have given a call for ‘BJP-mukt Bharat’, which is ridiculous and laughable. KCR wants to spit at the moon but it would fall on his own face. Only a sick mind could have such weird imagination,” the BJP in charge said.

Political analyst professor K Nageshwar said the political space at the national level is crowded. “KCR has been talking about the Telangana model, which he wants to expand in the country,” he said. “But the Telangana model is welfarism with a couple of popular schemes such as Rythu Bandhu and Dalita Bandhu. This is not enough. He (KCR) should come up with some innovative ideas like reforms in governance to transform the country.”
The name game
Apart from ‘Bharat Rashtriya Samiti, ‘Ujwal Bharat Party’ and ‘Naya Bharat Party’ were among names that reportedly cropped up recently in the TRS circles for the proposed national outfit. However, there was no official confirmation.

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