A day after his return from Delhi, Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy had to taste the wrath of the Congress leadership for throwing his weight behind the ongoing Samaikyandhra movement. AICC state affairs incharge Digvijay Singh, who had been critical of him behind closed doors till the other day, almost reprimanded him in public on Wednesday.
While speaking to reporters in Delhi, Digvijay said: “Kiran Reddy is the Chief Minister of entire Andhra Pradesh. So, his responsibility is not confined to only one region. He is responsible for the entire state.”
Interestingly, the comment came minutes after he met party president Sonia Gandhi. According to sources, the AICC leadership is angry at Kiran as he has been repeatedly assuring party leaders from Seemandhra that the state would not be bifurcated till 2014 polls. When Kiran met some ministers and Congress MPs from Seemandhra on Tuesday, he is learnt to have told them that he would personally meet and urge President Pranab Mukherjee to reject the Telangana Bill, if the T-resolution was defeated in the State Assembly.
Sources said a section of leaders in the AICC believe the Chief Minister is further fuelling the stir in Seemandhra with his pro-Samaikyandhra stand. In fact, Digvijay had also expressed his displeasure over the attitude of Kiran, when wives of Seemandhra ministers called on him recently saying, “Your Chief Minister has come in the way of announcing a good financial package for Seemandhra with his opposition to our party’s decision to bifurcate AP.”
Digvijay also made light of the APNGOs’ strike. “Private establishments and shops are open and private transport services are running in Seemandhra. Then how could government offices alone be closed? When private schools are functioning, how could government-run schools alone be shut?” he wondered.
He appealed to the APNGOs to call off their strike. “We will ensure that all employees of the undivided Andhra got their due while dividing the state,” he said.
Asked about the T-note, Digvijay said: “The Telangana note is being drafted by the Union Home Ministry. As soon as it is presented to the Union Cabinet, it will be sent to the AP Assembly.”
Despite the warning issued by the Congress leadership, Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy on Wednesday assured his peers from Seemandhra that he would ensure that Andhra Pradesh remained intact till 2014 polls, if the T-resolution was defeated in the Assembly.
Deal with Jagan?
At a time when TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu is alleging that there is a tacit understanding between the YSRC and Congress in Seemandhra in the run-up to the 2014 polls, Union Minister M Veerappa Moily has not ruled out the possibility of an electoral alliance between his party and the YSRC. When asked about the possibility of the Congress forging an electoral pact with Y S Jaganmohan Reddy’s party, Moily replied, “Anything is possible in politics.”