Days after the landslide victory in Telangana assembly elections, Chief Minister and TRS chief K Chandrashekar Rao (KCR) met his Odisha counterpart Naveen Patnaik in a bid to step up his campaign to build a non-BJP, non-Congress Federal Front. Hinting at the possibility of an alternative front of like-minded parties after the meeting, Patnaik said they discussed a number of issues, including matters of national and mutual interest. The meeting lasted for more than 40 minutes.
Holding a joint press conference with KCR, Patnaik said: â€œWe had a general discussion on matters of national interest and how to take this forward. We discussed several issues, including a further friendship amongst the like-minded parties,â€ he said.
Hon'ble CM Sri KCR and Hon'ble Odisha CM Sri Naveen Patnaik @Naveen_Odisha speak to media after their meeting in Bhubaneswar.â€” TRS Party (@trspartyonline) December 23, 2018
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The meeting assumed significance as the Odisha CM, though circumspect, opened up about the future course of action by the BJD and did not rule out the possibility of like-minded regional parties joining forces in the run-up to the 2019 polls.
Asked, if the meeting could be seen as both joining hands ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, Naveen said: â€œWe have not thought that far, letâ€™s seeâ€. He although hinted that meetings with KCR will continue in this regard.
The TRS boss was on the same page. KCR said there is a â€˜dire needâ€™ for regional parties to come together against BJP and Congress and added that talks with his Odisha counterpart have â€˜just started.â€™ â€œWe will meet again soon,â€ he said.
â€œThe country needs a political change, a change for which a dialogue has begun. We are making an effort; nothing concrete has come out till now. I believe something will emerge soon. We will meet again shortly. There is a dire need for unification of regional parties in the country,â€ he said.
KCR is also reaching out to regional parties to cobble up a non-Congress, non-BJP alliance ahead of the parliamentary elections. He is scheduled to meet West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in Kolkata on Monday.
The TRS Supremo will also meet Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati and Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav at New Delhi next week.
Naveen said he and KCR discussed the Polavaram issue and 33 per cent reservation for women in Parliament and state assemblies. â€œWe discussed Polavaram issue and how to carry that forward,â€ he said.
Congratulating the TRS supremo for the tremendous victory in Telangana in the recently concluded assembly elections, Naveen also praised the agriculture policy of KCR and said that some more progressive points have been added by the Odisha Government in its own policy.
(With PTI inputs)