With the Centre inching towards bifurcating the State, Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy, a staunch integrationist, is understood to be preparing to take the last bow. As reported in these columns over the last fortnight, indications from his camp suggest there is no rethink on his part.
He is unwilling to be a party to the division of Andhra Pradesh. However, he is likely to take the extreme step only after the meeting of the Congress Working Committee (CWC)/ UPA coordination panel — either of which may come out with a clear announcement in favour of a Telangana state. According to sources, Kiran Reddy indicated as much to Seemandhra ministers who called on him during the weekend. Minister TG Venkatesh too said Sunday, “Kiran Reddy might quit as soon as the AICC leadership announces its T-decision.”
It is learnt that the Chief Minister is upset by the developments in Delhi. “He has been upset ever since he returned from Delhi,” a minister, who called on Kiran Reddy on Sunday, told Express. According to sources, several Seemandhra ministers held informal talks over the phone on Sunday to decide their future strategy. They are contemplating resignation after August 1 when the CWC is likely to announce its decision to bifurcate the state. “As the Chief Minister advised us to wait till the meeting of the CWC, we are all waiting for the final decision of our party leadership,” a senior minister said.
However, the ministers, including the Chief Minister, are not ready to quit the Assembly, as they want to be present in the House to stall the T-resolution. “We want to be present in the House at the time of voting on the T-resolution to defeat it,” the minister said. Feelers from Kiran’s camp also indicate that he is unhappy with Union Ministers from Seemandhra for their apparent reluctance to put pressure on the party leadership.
Even though every Union Minister claims he or she will convey the aspirations of their region to the party high command, none is ready to quit. They have also made it clear that they would abide by the final decision of the party. Hence, Kiran is said to be of the opinion that the United AP lobby has been considerably weakened.