It has been a month since the Telugu Desam Party faced a humiliating defeat in the assembly elections in Andhra Pradesh, conceding 151 out of 175 assembly seats to YSR Congress party led by firebrand leader Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy.
Though the TDP had won the lowest number of MLAs it ever had – just 23, the party is yet to have a review of what had gone wrong with the party and where. There has been no such effort either from the party seniors or boss N Chandrababu Naidu.
Without even doing a comprehensive review of the reasons for the party’s debacle and taking corrective steps, Naidu chose to fly away to Europe on a holiday with the family, leaving the party in doldrums.
That is precisely why the party leaders have decided to take a plunge into the BJP in his absence.
Ironically, nobody – either Naidu or his son Nara Lokesh – has taken the responsibility for the defeat of the party in the elections.
Though nobody would expect Naidu to step down as the party president, many party leaders are of view that at least Lokesh should take the responsibility and resign from the party’s general secretary post.
Party seniors say Naidu should take up a comprehensive overhauling of the TDP and as part of it, he should first sack his son from the party general secretary post.
Lokesh not only could not win his own assembly seat from Mangalagiri, but also failed to give proper leadership to the party.
In fact, one of the reasons for the TDP’s defeat was the fear that Naidu might anoint Lokesh as his successor, if he comes back to power.
The people had absolutely no faith in Lokesh who had neither leadership qualities nor mass appeal.
Even senior party leaders were feeling unhappy with Lokesh. They felt his corporate style of functioning was not suited to lead a political party.
“Unless Naidu drops Lokesh from his think-tank, the party leaders and common people will not regain faith in the TDP. If Lokesh continues to be at the helm, the party will sink further,” a party leader said.