Eyebrows have gone up over Pawan Kalyan’s airdash to Delhi to meet top leaders of the BJP, including Working president JP Nadda. The only Jana Sena leader present alongside Pawan was Nadendla Manohar. Interestingly, Bengaluru MP Tejeswi Surya who had met Pawan last month was present at the meeting, leading to speculation that he may have helped set it up.
Both Surya and Sunil Deodhar, who is the party incharge for Andhra Pradesh, tweeted about having discussed political issues pertaining to Andhra Pradesh but no one is convinced that it was a mere informal meeting.
What’s cooking is obviously then a question that is bothering Pawan’s fans and Jana Sainiks apart from Andhra political watchers. According to the BJP camp, Pawan is keen on working with BJP as a political partner. Comparisons are drawn to the smaller Dravidian parties in Tamil Nadu that are sailing with the BJP while having pockets of influence in the state. The Powerstar is reportedly also keen to use this relationship to ensure Jaganmohan Reddy’s plan to shift the administrative capital out of Visakhapatnam does not succeed and is blocked by the Centre.
A working relationship is what Pawan had with the BJP as part of the TDP-BJP-Jana Sena alliance in 2014. That time, the actor only campaigned for the NDA but did not contest any seats himself.
But the BJP sources say Amit Shah is categorical that nothing short of a merger is acceptable. The dilemma for Pawan is that if he merges the Jana Sena, he would be accused of doing a Chiranjeevi 2.0 who too merged his Praja Rajyam with the Congress after his 2009 political debut did not elevate him to the chief minister’s chair.
But what is within the realm of possibility is that the BJP and Jana Sena could contest the local body elections together in Andhra Pradesh in 2020. If that happens, it will be a 180 degree turn for Pawan who contested the assembly elections in 2019 in an alliance with the Left parties and the BSP. But if you see it from the starting point of 2014, it will be a ghar waapsi of sorts.
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