The Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) today gave BJP president Amit Shah a history lesson in response to his comments attacking their party chief K Chandrasekhar Rao's move to go for early elections in the state. They pointed out that this is exactly what Narendra Modi did in 2002 when he was the chief minister of Gujarat.
Taking on Mr Shah, Lok Sabha member from Karimnagar B Vinod Kumar said, "All political parties have gone for early elections at some point of time or the other, even Narendra Modi. Why did he go for early elections in 2002, eight months before schedule?"
Mr Kumar, who is also the deputy floor leader of the TRS in the Lok Sabha, said that several leaders have gone for early elections at some point of time, including Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, N T Rama Rao and N Chandrababu Naidu.
Addressing a BJP rally in Karimnagar on Wednesday, Mr Shah had hit out at caretaker chief minister K Chandrashekar Rao or KCR as he is popularly known, took such a decision as he was "scared of Narendra Modi".
He also said that Mr Rao's move has thrust additional election expenditure of hundreds of crores on the people of the state.
The BJP president also claimed that Mr Rao took such a move because he is "scared of Prime Minister Narendra Modi".
The elections to all the 119 assembly seats in Telangana will be held on December 7. The assembly was dissolved on September 6 on the recommendation of Rao, cutting short the term of the House by nearly nine months.
Mr Shah also accused K Chandrashekar Rao of breaking his promise that he would make a Dalit the chief minister of Telangana and said that the TRS's plan is give the chief ministership to Mr Rao's son (KT Rama Rao) or daughter (Kalvakuntla Kavitha).
Responding to the BJP president's charge, Mr Kumar said, "Amit Shah should know that KCR did not make such a statement in the 2014 elections. He made such a statement during the course of our (Telangana statehood) agitation. During the 2014 elections, we were very clear that KCR would be our chief minister. In 2014, we never said (that a Dalit would be made CM)," Mr Kumar said.
He claimed that the people of Telangana want to see KCR as the chief minister again, not anybody else.
Mr Kumar described as "very unfortunate" the BJP president's charge that KCR and Congress president Rahul Gandhi are engaged in "break-in-India", while Prime Minister Modi is in 'make-in-India' mode.
"Supporting minorities and speaking of reservations for minorities, does it mean break in India?" he asked.
The lawmaker emphatically denied any possibility of a tie-up between BJP and TRS.
"Not at all. We are not going to have any political alliance, either with the BJP or Congress in the future also," he asserted.
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