KTR backs Mamata, sees glimmer of hope for Third Front as fissures in INDIA bloc widen

The BRS working president asserted his alignment with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's call for the grand old party to introspect.

ByRaj Rayasam

Published Feb 03, 2024 | 10:56 PMUpdatedFeb 03, 2024 | 10:56 PM

KT Rama Rao. (File pic)

Hinting subtly at the emergence of a third front against the BJP and the Congress, KT Rama Rao, the working president of the BRS, asserted on Saturday, 3 February, his alignment with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s call for the grand old party to introspect on how its attitude led to an implosion within the proposed INDIA alliance.

Recalling Mamata’s scepticism about the Congress’s ability to secure 40 seats this time, KTR emphasised the need for the grand old party to reflect on its strategies.

Mamata had thrown a challenge to the Congress, daring them to win in UP, Rajasthan, and MP, while also hinting at taking the lead in uniting regional parties against the BJP for government formation post-elections.

Also Read: BRS upbeat as former Telangana chief minister KCR takes oath as MLA

‘Congress not a BJP alternative anymore’

In a statement on X, the former Telangana IT and Industries Minister highlighted that forces led by strong leaders like KCR, Mamata, Arvind Kejriwal, and MK Stalin are the only ones capable of resisting the BJP.

He said that instead of taking on the BJP in UP and Gujarat where it is a direct face-off, and making something out of it, the Congress ends up playing spoiler by fighting against other parties. “Congress is no longer a viable alternative to the BJP,” he said.

For the BRS, the Congress is a political rival in Telangana, and the party’s patriarch K Chandrashekar Rao’s attempts to form a credible coalition against both the BJP and the Congress in 2019 failed. As the BRS battles the Congress in Telangana, it couldn’t align with the INDIA bloc and its constituents were indifferent to excluding KCR from it.

Also Read: KTR predicts disintegration of the INDIA bloc, says only regional parties like BRS can take on BJP

Fissures in INDIA bloc

Meanwhile, KCR expanded the party, rebranded as BRS, and ventured into Maharashtra, facing a bitter defeat in the recent Assembly elections at the hands of the Congress.

BRS working president’s endorsement of Mamata’s stance on the INDIA bloc followed Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav expressing displeasure at not being invited for Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra in Uttar Pradesh. Yadav’s remarks fueled speculation about widening rifts within the INDIA bloc, coinciding with the Congress’s firefighting operations in West Bengal.

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh appealed to INDIA constituents to strengthen the alliance, expressing hope that the collaboration with TMC in West Bengal would endure and that a middle ground could be found to forge an understanding.