BJP, Chandrababu Naidu’s TDP Finalise Seats For Lok Sabha, Andhra Polls

The BJP, Telugu Desam Party the Jana Sena announced their alliance on March 9.

New Delhi:

The BJP, N Chandrababu Naidu’s TDP and Pawan Kalyan’s Jana Sena have finalised seats for the upcoming Lok Sabha and Andhra Pradesh Assembly elections late this evening. The BJP will fight in six Lok Sabha and ten assembly seats, TDP will contest in 17 Lok Sabha and 144 assembly seats while Jana Sena got two Lok Sabha and 21 assembly seats. Andhra Pradesh has 25 Lok Sabha and 175 assembly seats that will see a simultaneous contest.

As per sources, the BJP will fight parliamentary elections from Araku, Rajahmundry, Anakapalle, Tirupati, Narasapuram and one more seat while Jana sena from Machilipatnam and Kakinada.

The announcement came after senior BJP leaders, including Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, went into a huddle with Mr Naidu and Mr Kalyan on Monday to finalise candidates.

BJP chief JP Nadda announced the alliance of his party with the Telugu Desam Party and the Jana Sena on March 9. “Under the dynamic and visionary leadership of Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and the Jana Sena Party (JSP), as well as being committed to the progress of the country and the upliftment of state and people of Andhra Pradesh, have decided to contest the ensuing Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha elections together in Andhra Pradesh,” a joint statement released by the TDP BJP and the Jana Sena said.

The TDP, which was part of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance until 2018, expressed interest in reviving the alliance after suffering a crushing defeat in the 2019 elections. Mr Naidu’s party had walked out of the NDA over financial support for Andhra Pradesh. “I took the decision not for selfish reasons but for the interests of Andhra Pradesh. For four years I made all efforts, went to Delhi 29 times, asked many times. This was the Centre’s last budget and there was no mention of Andhra Pradesh,” Mr Naidu had then explained his decision.

A joint statement issued by the parties highlighted their “old ties”. “The BJP and the TDP have a very old relationship together. The TDP joined the NDA in 1996 and has worked together successfully in governments led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Narendra Modi,” it said.

In 2014, the TDP and the BJP fought the Lok Sabha and Andhra Pradesh Assembly polls together, while the JSP supported the two parties, it added.

Yesterday, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy said that he was ready to fight against the alliance and alleged that Chandrababu Naidu’s cycle is “rusted and he is fetching support from other political parties”.

Elections for Lok Sabha are expected to be held in April-May in which the ruling BJP is eyeing a third term and has set a target of winning 370 seats on its own and 400 with allies.

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