Farmers & Federalism: Oppn's New Mantra

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Highlights

The process of political re-alignment has begun. Serious efforts are on in Delhi and the possibility of Kejriwal and KCR cosying up to bring anti-BJP parties on one platform is high.

The process of political re-alignment has begun. Serious efforts are on in Delhi and the possibility of Kejriwal and KCR cosying up to bring anti-BJP parties on one platform is high. If the developments in the last two days in New Delhi are any indication, it appears the issue of farmers is going to take center-stage during the campaign.

This new combination wants to bring all the farmers who had put up a united fight for over a year on the Delhi borders together. The issue of fixing power meters to agricultural pump sets, the comments made by the BJP leaders during the farmers' movement and the incident in which a car driven by a Union Minister's son had mowed down four farmers etc., will be part of the political attack on BJP.

They will also go hammer and tongs against the centre, saying that it has given up 'True Federalism.' It does not follow the spirit of 'Sab Ka Saath Sab Ka Vikas.' But then will this effort to cook a new 'Khichidi' really succeed in spurring a strong anti-BJP movement by the time the country goes for next elections? It is perhaps too early to predict. But then one thing which needs to be understood is that who will be the partners of the proposed front or a party or some alliance that may take shape? Who will be the face of this conglomeration? Will it be Kejriwal or KCR?

There are two possibilities. One to form a new political party and create a new wine in old bottle or all regional parties will focus in defeating BJP in their respective states without cutting into each other's votes and try and come together after the results are out if they succeed in defeating BJP.

KCR may even try to do another NTR kind of act by inviting all leaders to Hyderabad and organise sort of a conclave of anti-BJP parties. If the mood in opposition parties is any indication, they don't want to hurry with any plan since still there is at least one year or even more time to go in for general elections. They want to explore all possibilities and come up with a draft agenda.

However, it remains to be seen how well these regional parties will be able to influence the voters in their respective states. The Samajwadi Party did fairly well though it was nowhere near to power in UP but whether it will be able to repeat the same in Lok Sabha elections is the million dollar question. In West Bengal, TMC can certainly give a tough fight to BJP but then the question is how dependable Didi and her party are if an alliance is to be formed. What about Shiv Sena? DMK will not join unless Congress is part of such alliance.

Apart from all these things, the biggest question is what would be the take of all these political parties on issues like federalism? The very fact is that all regional parties practise the policy of unitary decisions. When these parties cannot assure federalism within their parties can they implement true federalism in the country?

Is it not a fact that all decisions in regional parties are taken only by their presidents? There is no leader who would be having information to share either with constituents or media. In some parties, even ministers need to take the permission of CM to attend some inaugural functions to light a lamp. Another big question is what will happen to Congress party? Will these regional parties take Congress along with them? What would be the role of Congress party in such an alliance? Well, one thing is certain, the next elections are going to be very interesting and exciting.

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