In an interesting political game of seat-sharing process, the so-called ‘Mahakutami’ or the ‘grand alliance’ of Congress, TDP, TJS and CPI appears to be headed for trouble with Telangana Jana Samiti president Prof M Kodandaram calling out Congress for dragging its feet over seat-sharing with its proposed allies.
Upset with the Congress’ languid attitude towards its allies, Kodandaram is understood to have issued a 48-hour ultimatum to Congress to decide whether it wants an alliance or not in the first place. It is learnt that Kodandaram wrote to Telangana Congress declaring that TJS will not compromise on its demand for a substantial number of seats.
The TJS president is also learnt to have warned the Congress that the TJS was perfectly capable of going it alone in the polls or joining hands with “other like-minded parties if its demands are not met.”
News of Kodandaram’s ultimatum came on a day when the proposed meeting of Mahakutami leaders was put off because the Congress was busy trying to come to grips with its own candidates list.
Instead of a meeting with leaders from TJS, TDP and the CPI as planned, a group of senior Congress leaders met in the evening at a resort on the city outskirts to take stock of demands from different sections of party leaders and to pare down the lists of prospects.
It is learnt that several leaders who made their case with the senior party leaders of the party’s election committee were of the opinion that the Congress should not give more than 19 seats to the allies. They also reportedly insisted that Congress should contest the remaining 100 seats in the Assembly. Some party leaders are learnt to have told AICC in-charge for State RC Khuntia, other AICC representatives and State Congress president N Uttam Kumar Reddy, senior leaders K Jana Reddy and Md Ali Shabbir among others at the meeting, that Congress would be on a weak wicket if it caves in and gives in to the demands for seats from other parties.
As things stood on Tuesday evening, the Congress appeared unwilling to give Kodandaram’s party more than three seats, while the TJS wanted nothing less than 35 seats though it wants to contest from 50 constituencies. TJS leaders believe that if the Congress does not agree to their demands, their party would have the most to lose if it stays in the alliance as it would get completely sidelined and would be viewed as an also-ran and non-serious political competitor in Telangana. #KhabarLive