VIJAYAWADA: Monday being the last day for filing of nominations for Rajya Sabha MPs posts, aspirants in the ruling TDP have intensified their lobbying. It is learnt that TDP supremo and Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu will announce the names of the party nominees any time on Sunday.Though the list of aspirants is growing by the day with several leaders queueing up before the CM and appealing to him to give them a chance, Naidu is taking time by holding consultations with party senior leaders for finalising the party candidates.
With Naidu continuing the suspense in announcing the party nominees and hinting at declaring the names of candidates any time on Sunday, the aspirants are making their last-minute efforts. On Saturday, several leaders including CM Ramesh, Beeda Mastan Rao, Masala Padmaja, Varla Ramaiah, Kambhampati Rammohan Rao called on the Chief Minister at the Interim Government Complex (IGC) and urged him to consider their names for Rajya Sabha MP seats. Though Naidu discussed the issue with AP TDP chief K Kala Venkata Rao and Finance Minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu, he is yet to take a final decision. Stating that TDP had decided to nominate one person each from BC and OC categories this time around, a TDP leader said that in case the party contested for the third seat it might be allotted to an SC candidate.
Sources in the ruling TDP told TNIE that CM Ramesh (OC) from Kadapa district would retain his seat while another seat was almost finalised in favour of Beeda Mastan Rao (BC) from Nellore district.
When contacted, AP TDP chief and Energy Minister Kala Venkata Rao said the Chief Minister said that the candidates were not yet finalised and the Chief Minister would announce the names on Sunday.
Though sources said that TDP may limit itself to contesting for two seats and leave the other to YSRC, making election unanimous, an aspirant for the post in the TDP said that there were chances of TDP contesting for the third seat also.
Going by the strength of the MLAs in the AP Legislative Assembly, the TDP can bag two out of the three Rajya Sabha MPs on its own. But, in case it wants to contest for the third seat if it is confident of attracting at least one MLA from the Opposition YSRC, the stand of BJP would also become crucial.Due to strained relations between TDP and BJP, which resulted in both the parties pulling out their party Ministers from the Centre and State governments respectively recently, political pundits suspect that even if the TDP succeeded in getting the support of one or two MLAs from YSRC, it could not won the third seat in case the saffron party having four MLAs boycotting the election.
When contacted, BJP floor leader P Vishnu Kumar Raju said, “People gave mandate for both the parties together and I think there is nothing wrong in the BJP supporting the TDP.” A decision would be taken by the party high command, he said and disclosed that all issues would be discussed during the core committee meeting to be held in Vijayawada on Sunday.
Competition for RS MP increases in TDP
Leaders queue up before Naidu seeking opportunity to serve as RS MP
The aspirants: Varla Ramaiah, Jupudi Prabhakar, Masala Padma, Kambhampati Rammohan Rao, CM Ramesh, Beeda Mastan Rao and others
CM Ramesh, Beeda Mastan Rao likely to be nominated by TDP
YSRC candidate Vemireddy Prabhakar Reddy already files nomination