HYDERABAD: Living up to its image, Telangana Congress continues to be dogged by groupism despite the fact that, before long, it has to face the by-election to Huzurnagar Assembly seat, vacated by TPCC president N Uttam Kumar Reddy following his election to the Lok Sabha from Nalgonda.
The schisms in the party came to the fore once again on Wednesday, when Malkajgiri MP A Revanth Reddy trained his guns at Uttam Kumar Reddy, questioning how he could unilaterally announce the name of his wife Padmavathi for the Huzurnagar seat.
He met the party’s Telangana in-charge RC Khuntia in Hyderabad and lodged a strong protest, requesting him to issue a show-cause notice to Uttam Kumar Reddy.
“How could Uttam declare his wife would be the party’s nominee for the by-election?” he is understood to have asked Khunthia, who told him that he would take his complaint to the notice of the party high command.
Revanth Reddy was upset with the TPCC president for not inviting him to join the delegation to meet Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan on Tuesday where they submitted a memorandum seeking disqualification of the 12 Congress MLAs who had defected to the TRS in the guise of the merger of the Congress Legislature Party.
Ever since Uttam Kumar Reddy vacated the Huzurnagar seat, after his election to the Lok Sabha, there was a renewed interest among the Congress leaders to contest from this constituency as it is considered a Congress bastion. Initially, senior leaders R Damodar Reddy and K Jana Reddy toyed with the idea of contesting from there, but later piped down and declared that they would support whoever the party would nominate for the seat.
This apart, Munugodu Congress MLA K Rajgopal Reddy, who has become a gadfly for the party with his trenchant criticism of Uttam Kumar and Khuntia, said that he had not yet decided whether he should support the Congress nominee. Though he had made up his mind to join the BJP, he is dragging his feet for fear of facing disqualification. He is asking the BJP leadership to nominate his wife Lakshmi for the seat but the BJP is understood to have not given any commitment since he has not yet joined the saffron party.
While this is so, trouble is brewing in the Congress on another front. AICC secretary SA Sampath Kumar’s outburst against senior leaders who attended a meeting called by Jana Sena chief Pawan Kalyan to build a movement against uranium mining has stirred the hornet’s nest. Sampath Kumar wanted to know the rationale behind the senior leaders of a national party attending the meeting at a time when the film actor does not even have one sarpanch in the State.
Hitting back at him, Revanth Reddy said: “He does not even know the ABCD of uranium mining. Maybe Samath was upset because Pawan Kalyan did not allow him to take a selfie with him,” he said, lacing his words with sarcasm.