CM sent home with a free hand

Published: 25th August 2012 02:47 PM  |   Last Updated: 25th August 2012 02:47 PM   |  A+A-

Is it the end of the road for roads and buildings minister Dharmana Prasada Rao? Efforts by his cabinet colleagues to save him have not cut any ice with the Congress high command.

At the end of chief minister Kiran Kumar Reddy's twoday visit to Delhi, it has become clear that Dharmana will be dropped.

Reddy is expected to forward the minister's resignation to governor ESL Narasimhan for acceptance on Saturday or Sunday.

This apart, the high command is understood to have given Kiran Reddy the freedom to take appropriate action against four other ministers who have been issued notices by the Supreme Court.

Though the high command is not disinclined to act against them, it wants to take recourse to action as and when an opportunity presents itself.

The chief minister spent about one hour with party president Sonia Gandhi at her residence in Delhi Friday afternoon along with her political secretary Ahmed Patel, AICC general secretary Ghulam Nabi Azad and AICC emissary to AP Vayalar Ravi.

"The chief minister is quite happy. He has been given a free hand," an aide said as Kiran Kumar was boarding the flight to Hyderabad Friday evening.

Kiran Reddy returned to Hyderabad, feeling honoured that the party chief had spent close to one hour with him and advised him as to what he should do.

Interestingly, PCC chief Botcha Satyanarayana has not been given an audience though he has been in Delhi for the last few days while even leaders like former minister P Shankar Rao got a chance to speak to her.

According to sources, the high command is keen that the party has a clean image.

Accordingly, it wants Kiran Reddy's cabinet to have a new look but a sudden and sweeping purge has its disadvantages - those dropped might embarrass the government by joining the hands with Jagan Mohan Reddy.

PCC leadership was not discussed but Botcha is likely to be stripped of either of the two positions he holds, sources said.

But it would happen only after the current session of Parliament is over. Botcha is also transport minister.

Prior to meeting Sonia, Reddy called on Vayalar Ravi and later met Veerappa Moily.

After meeting Sonia, Kiran and Botcha sat together and discussed a revamp of the PCC and filling of nominated posts, sources said.

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