ADILABAD: In what has come as a shot in the arm for the Congress in erstwhile Adilabad district, Chennur former TRS MLA Nallala Odelu, his wife Bhagyalakshmi, who is also the chairperson of Mancherial Zilla Parishad, joined the ranks of the grand old party in the presence of the party leader Priyanka Gandhi at New Delhi on Thursday.
TPCC chief A Revanth Reddy was present on the occasion. Odelu has been with the TRS since its formation in 2001. He enjoys support in Singareni region. He won from Chennur in 2009 and in 2014 and a byelection in 2010. He has a running feud with sitting MLA Balka Suman and unable to get along with him, he broke ranks with the TRS. Odelu and Bhagyalakshmi come from Madiga community, which is numerically strong in Telangana among all other sub-sects of the SCs.
Odelu, after joining the Congress, said that though he had been with the party since the day of its inception, the party did not allot tickets to him for Assembly elections in 2018. “The TRS has made my wife the ZP chairman but cut all her powers and denied privileges due to her as part of the protocol that goes with her position,” he said, adding: “ Balka Suman has been sending threatening messages to our cellphones and is monitoring our movements. My phone has been tapped. TRS leaders are harassing me.”
After admitting the couple into the party fold, Priyanka Gandhi told the Odelus that they would be treated with respect and honour in the party. Revanth Reddy said it has become clear that sub-classification of the SCs for the purpose of reservations under the TRS rule would never happen. “The time has come for the people to jettison the TRS regime.
TRS leaders condemn couple
Condemning the allegations levelled by Nalla Bhagyalakshmi and Nalla Odelu that they have parted ways with the pink party due to harassment by Balka Suman, TRS leaders from Chennur said that the MLA always stood by the couple. DCMS chairperson C Lingaya, ZP vice-chairperson Satyanarayana and District Library Committee chairman Reniguntla Praveen said that Odelu had praised the Chief Minister after being elected to the Assembly while Bhagyalakshmi had been made ZP chairperson with the support of Balka Suman.