The special category status for Andhra Pradesh has become a rallying point for actor-turned-Jana Sena Party president Pawan Kalyan and YSR Congress party president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy. Both have been waging a bitter battle for the same but adopting their own respective strategies.
The peculiar aspect of the agitation by both the leaders is that Pawan has been attacking the Bharatiya Janata Party in general and Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union minister M Venkaiah Naidu in particular for denying special category status to Andhra Pradesh. He even went to the extent of raising the bogey of north-south divide to whip up the passions on self-respect of Andhras.
However, he has been adopting a soft approach towards Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu, though he politely questions as to why Naidu has remained silent when Modi is doing injustice to the state. In one way, Pawan has given a benefit of doubt to Naidu, saying the latter must be under compulsion to compromise on the special category status. Reason is that Pawan knows he cannot become the chief minister at any cost, by targetting Naidu, but comes a hero if he sticks to the issue and question the Centre.
On the other hand, Jagan has a different agenda. His primary objective is to pull down Naidu government and become chief minister of Andhra Pradesh as soon as possible. So, he has to attack Naidu and expose his ineffectiveness. He largely maintains restraint on attacking the Centre for going back on the special category status and does not utter a word against Modi, for obvious reasons better known to himself and all others, who have been observing the state politics.
Under these circumstances, the statement from Pawan that he is ready to join hands even the Leader of Opposition to fight for special category status has raised many an eyebrow. First of all, is it possible for the two leaders of varied strategies to come on the same dais? If the come together, Jagan should attack Modi and Pawan should attack Naidu. Does it happen?
Thirdly, Pawan has some “thikka” but with some “lekka,” whereas Jagan has a single point agenda to become the chief minister. So, will Pawan help Jagan realise his dream? And fourthly, will Jagan allow Pawan to hog limelight among the people? Because the YSRC chief does not want anybody else, except him, to get the attention of a hero. Let us wait and see.