HYDERABAD: “The Father loves the Son and has given all things into his hand”
For now, this biblical verse appears to be true in the case of Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao and his son K T Rama Rao, IT Minister in his father’s Cabinet.
While KCR is away from the ‘seat of power’ Hyderabad for almost a week to perform the mammoth five-day ‘Ayutha Maha Chandi Yagam’ that ends on Sunday, his son KTR seems to have emerged as ‘first among equals’ in his father’s Cabinet. By leading the entire state administration in place of his father, the young politico has now emerged as an undisputed ‘heir apparent’ for KCR.
In the past one month, KTR is the only minister in KCR’s Cabinet who has been seen taking part in all government programmes that held in Hyderabad, whether inauguration of double-bedroom flats for the poor or launching of state government welfare schemes, as chief guest.
Now, as KCR is away from Hyderabad for seven days to perform Yagam at his farmhouse in Erravalli village on the outskirts of Hyderabad, KTR has almost become a de facto CM. Thus, by making his son indirectly take the reins of administration, KCR seems to have sent a subtle message to his party cadres that his son is the ‘CM-in-waiting’. In fact, whenever KCR is away from Hyderabad for a personal or official visit, it is the duty of KTR to take care of things in the State Secretariat.
KCR, however, has difficulties in openly announcing his son as his successor. The reason is that his nephew and Irrigation Minister T Harish Rao has been with the TRS from its inception, way back in 2001. He had played a key role in developing the party from grassroots level whereas KTR took the political plunge just prior to 2009 polls. Hence, it is an open secret that Harish, who is watching the rituals at the yagam, is a contender for the top post in the State government. He has even sizeable support of party leaders and cadres. “The ongoing yagam has paved a way for KCR to unofficially anoint his son. KTR is holding the fort in Hyderabad, now,” said a senior TRS leader.
Except KTR, almost all other ministers in the cabinet are spending most of their time at Chandi Yagam site.
KCR also entrusted his son KTR with the responsibility of coordinating TRS party affairs for the forthcoming Greater Municipal Hyderabad Corporation (GHMC) elections. So, KTR is running the show for the party and government.
Before becoming the chief minister, KCR performed Chandi Yagams frequently. He is also a staunch believer of occult subjects like astrology, numerology and vastu. He appointed a vastu expert as an advisor to the government recently. As a believer of numerology, Rao's lucky number is six. So, he is planning to create 14 new districts, taking the total number to 24.
Let KCR Disclose Source of Money for Yagam, says digvijaya
AICC general secretary in charge of state Congress Digvijaya Singh has criticised CM K Chandrasekhar Rao for conducting the Ayutha Maha Chandi Yagam at a time when farmers in the state are committing suicide in a distressed state. Taking to Twitter, Singh said: “Crores of rupees is being spent by KCR on Chandi Yagna while farmers commit suicide. He says it is his money. If so, will he explain his source of income?” He then asked, “Instead of spending on yagna, should he not have given that money to the families of farmers who committed suicide? I strongly condemn it.” Singh also criticised President Pranab Mukherjee’s plan to attend the yagam. “There are rumours that THE Rashtrapati ji is going to attend KCR’s Chandi Yagna. Should he?” he tweeted.
■ About 1,100 Ritwiks (officiating priests) attending
■ 108 fire pits ■ 11 Brahmins recite the Vedas at every fire pit ■ About 10,000 Sapthashathi paranaya and Chandiyaga vakshari were to be recited
■ 20 tonnes Moduga firewood, 12 tonnes Payasam and 4,000 kgs of cow ghee invitees: President Pranab Mukherjee, N Chandrababu Naidu, M Venkaiah Naidu, Bandaru Dattatreya, some Governors and High Court judges
■ Special galleries for VIPs
■ Separate galleries for Ministers, MLAs
■ Galleries for devotees and public
■ Kitchen, to feed maximum 60,000 people
■ TV screens in every gallery
■ Special gallery for media personnel
■ Cameras in every gallery
■ Ambulance and fire services
■ BSNL and other private operators have arranged temporary cell phone towers
■ Laddoos are being prepared to distribute to devotees as special prasadam
■ Five checkposts around the yagam place
■ Ten parking places
■ Info, health centres, rescue teams put in place