HYDERABAD: Even as the TDP leadership is desperately struggling to keep its flock together in the Telangana State Assembly, all the ten legislators who shifted their allegiance to the TRS have appealed to the Speaker to consider the merger of the party with the ruling party, causing a major embarrasment to the yellow party in the House.
Akin to the recent act of their peers in the TS Legislative Council, who had passed a resolution merging their party with the TRS in the Upper House after their defection to the pink party en masse, all the 10 MLAs who joined the TRS, submitted a letter to Assembly Speaker Sirikonda Madhusudana Chary on Friday, urging him to consider the merger of TDP Legislature Party (TDLP) with the TRS.
In the letter, Errabelli Dayakar Rao informed the Speaker that they had passed a resolution merging their legislature party with the TRS in the House. “As 10 of the total 15 TDP MLAs have joined the TRS, we are now entitled to merge the party with the TRS as we constitute two-thirds of the total legislators of our party,” he said.
Dayakar Rao informed the Speaker that the 10 defected MLAs had met at the TRS office on Thursday and passed a resolution to this effect. He further pleaded with the Speaker to allow them to merge the TDP with the TRS as per Article 4, Schedule X of the Constitution.
He, then, requested the Speaker to recognise them as TRS members, henceforth. The letter submitted to the Speaker bore the signatures of minister Talasani Srinivas Yadav, Errabelli Dayakar Rao, G Sayanna, Teegala Krishna Reddy, Manchireddy Kishan Reddy, Madhavaram Krishna Rao, KP Vivekananda Goud, C Dharma Reddy, T Prakash Goud and S Rajender Reddy.
Meanwhile, TDP MLA A Revanth Reddy, who has been appointed leader of the TDP Legislature Party (TDLP) in place of Dayakar Rao, said the proposal mooted by the defected MLAs does not stand legal scrutiny. He submitted another representation to the Speaker’s office, seeking immediate disqualification of all the defected TDP members from the membership of the Assembly.
“We have been time and again urging the Speaker to act against those MLAs, who have defected from our party to the TRS. In the last 16 months, we have submitted several memoranda to the Speaker seeking disqualification of those five MLAs, who had earlier joined the TRS from our party. Today, we submitted another memorandum seeking the disqualification of the other five members of our party who now joined the TRS,” Revanth Reddy said.
He then said the TDP would take legal recourse to deal with the issue.
“The issue of merger of a party with another party doesn’t come under Speaker’s purview. Hence, we will challenge any decision taken by Speaker in this regard,” Reddy added.
Party senior leader Ravula Chandrasekhar Reddy claimed that as per amendment made to Anti-Defection Law in 2003, even if all legislators of one party join another party, their defection is not valid.
Interestingly, for a while, followers of both Dayakar Rao and Revanth Reddy were engaged themselves in a bitter war of words while trying to stake claim to the TDLP office located on Assembly premises.
Against this backdrop, TDP boss N Chandrababu Naidu held discussionss with the remaining five MLAs for the second consecutive day on Friday and asked them not to desert the party.
Of the remaining five MLAs, the buzz is that Sandra Venkata Veeraiah and Arikapudi Gandhi, who accompanied Revanth Reddy when he submitted a petition to the Speaker’s office seeking disqualification of the deserted MLAs, might join the TRS sooner or later.