Samaikyandhra protagonists have stepped up publicity in Seemandhra even as Congress Seemandhra leaders are busy guessing Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy’s future strategy.
In what could be seen as an effort to create an atmosphere that a new party is on the anvil, a number of banners, flexis and hoardings have popped up in every nook and cranny of Seemandhra. Samaikyandhra posters appeared even on RTC and private buses in Guntur and Krishna districts while cultural troupes have begun campaigning in the twin Godavari districts.
This publicity blitz comes ahead of the promised ‘spirited speech’ of Kiran Reddy in the Assembly — probably to set the stage for him, averred political observers. But is this all just to boost his image or float a party? The question has become a hot topic of discussion among Congress leaders.
Close aides of Kiran Reddy such as Minister Pithani Satyanarayana and Vijayawada MP Lagadapati Rajagopal are bringing more confusion than clarity. If Pithani on Saturday remarked that people as well as politicians in Seemandhra were eagerly awaiting a new party, his colleague Rajagopal said Sunday, “We will decide our future course after Jan 23.” The latter also issued a warning to his Delhi bosses, claiming, “We will intensify the Samaikyandhra movement by the time the Parliament session begins..in such a way as to make our party leadership regret its T decision.” APNGOs’ leader P Ashok Babu too threatened to intensify the stir in the next three-four days.
Notwithstanding these threats and claims, not many Congress leaders in Seemandhra believe Kiran Reddy will actually launch a party. And, if indeed he does, he might do so only at the behest of the Congress central leadership, they suspect and cite the repeated assertions of party State affairs incharge Digvijaya Singh that “Kiran Reddy is a loyal Congress man.”
Kiran’s recent mediation on behalf of MPs Rajagopal, Harsha Kumar and Sabbam Hari to let them attend the AICC session in Delhi is also being cited to argue that the Chief Minister hasn’t yet burnt his bridges with the Congress high command.
Against this backdrop, MLA Anam Vivekananda Reddy on Sunday gave a new twist, saying, “Going by the aggressive publicity campaign for Samaikyandhra, anybody can guess that a new party is on the cards. Probably, the party could be launched by NGOs.” For good measure, he added that given the stand taken by the BJP national leadership, it looks like the State will remain united.
Assembly to be dissolved soon?
Minister Pithani Satyanarayana has been saying that the Chief Minister would resign once the T debate ends. Now, a senior Congress MP from Seemandhra has also begun echoing the same view. The MP, who is moving closely with the Chief Minister, on Sunday said he believed the Assembly would be dissolved once the debate ends. “The State Legislature might not exist after three days. Real drama will start unfolding from then,” he told scribes in an informal chat. In fact, minister Pithani on Saturday said all the Seemandhra leaders, including the Chief Minister, were ready to resign en masse any moment after the debate.