Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) president K Chandrasekhara Rao is learnt to have made up his mind not to merge his party with Congress, even if the ruling party agrees to project him as Chief Miniser of the new Telangana State.KCR, who is now camping in Delhi and meeting Congress bigwigs as a thanks-giving gesture for creation of Telangana State, has sent across a clear message that he would prefer a seat-sharing alliance with Congress rather than an outright merger. The TRS sources said that there was little wisdom in a merger.
The refusal for merger is based on the aspirations, interests and views of the party legislators and leaders rather than the ambition to rule the State which KCR would do anyway. “There are people who have toiled with us for 13 years through some of the toughest times.
We cannot ignore their views and aspirations now when their struggle has finally borne fruit,” a senior TRS legislator told Metro India. He claimed that the common view among the party leaders is that it should not merge with Congress.This source explained that no regional party could hope for a political future after merging with a bigger party and they would like to tread very cautiously at this juncture.KCR is unlikely to bargain very hard for Lok Sabha seats if given a lion’s share in the Assembly seats. For now, all talks have been put off as the TRS chief is not likely to make any announcement during his present stay in the national capital. KCR is expected to return to Hyderabad on Wednesday where a grand welcome has been planned for him.Sources said he would hold wide consultations with party leaders and cadres before arriving at a decision. The Telangana leader is obviously not in a hurry. Sources also claimed they were not going to decide anything in haste as there was time for elections. “We will take a call once the election schedule is announced or by the second week of March,” the sources said.
However, party sources have rubbished the buzz that KCR wants to keep his options open for aligning with the NDA. Sources claim that the unwillingness to merge is prompted by interests and aspirations of party cadres and not by any post-poll considerations. “We have no intentions of going with Narendra Modi or any other formulation in the post poll scenario,” this leader claimed.Meanwhile, KCR and his party colleagues continued their thanksgiving visits to various dignitaries in the national capital. KCR met President Pranab Mukherjee with a big 40 member party delegation to thank him for his encouragement and support. He reminded the President that it was his initiative which kick-started the process for creation of a separate Telangana State and once again his ‘golden signature’ would bring the State into existence.President Mukherjee, on his part, applauded KCR for his ‘relentless struggle for the last 15 years.’
Earlier in the day, the TRS president called on AICC Vice-President Rahul Gandhi. Besides thanking Rahul for his support in ensuring passing of Telagnana Bill in the Parliament, KCR also discussed the latest political situation in the Telangana region. However, the duo reportedly avoided talks on a possible merger of TRS in the Congress party or alliance between the two parties. Sources say that the talks were quite informal and were confined to exchange of views on post-bifurcation scenario.And on Tuesday, KCR and his team would meet Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh as part of his thanks-giving mission.