Eatala-Bandi leadership tussle a pain for BJP

The brief given to him is to persuade Rajender to accept the responsibility of campaign committee chairman.
Image used for representational purposes (Photo | PTI)
Image used for representational purposes (Photo | PTI)

HYDERABAD: The BJP central leadership is grappling with the problem of assuaging the ruffled feelings of the dissidents in Telangana, particularly Huzurabad MLA Eatala Rajender. Though the party leadership offered to make him the chairman of the campaign committee, it has not cut any ice with him. His supporters have been saying that he should be given the reins of the party in Telangana. But the incumbent president, Bandi Sanjay Kumar also does not want to make way for Rajender, by accepting the MoS offer by the Centre.  

As Rajender has been sulking for quite some time now over not being given the importance in the party that he deserves, the leadership is looking at other options like doing some kind of a rejig of the party, but it is not getting anywhere. The party is also considering taking Sanjay into the central cabinet as minister of state and appointing party vice-president DK Aruna as president and Rajender as the chairman of the campaign committee. But the proposal has not found favour with Rajender and Sanjay.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah has assigned the task of defusing the crisis in Telangana to Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. The brief given to him is to persuade Rajender to accept the responsibility of campaign committee chairman. But Rajender is not willing to settle for this position and said that he would continue in the party as an ordinary leader and as an MLA which is one way of telling the party high command that he is not happy with the way they are handling the issue.

On the other hand, Bandi Sanjay Kumar is not very enthused about accepting the offer of MoS, by leaving the party reins in Telangana to someone else. He conveyed his opinion to party Telangana in-charge Sunil Bansal. Sanjay reportedly told him that in case they want to have a change of guard, he would rather remain as MP and party leader but would not accept the MoS offer, indicating that he too is as firm as Rajender on his stand.

The party leaders are discussing in hushed voices that they have never seen such a situation in the BJP in the past where the leadership has to struggle to appoint a new president or appoint a leader of some substance to a post that it feels right for him. They are worried that if the situation continues, it may not augur well for the party.

Both Sanjay and Rajender are refusing to climb down from their positions. The BJP leaders who are in charge of the party in Telangana - Bansal and Tharun Chuggh -- have failed to make either of them relent on his stand.

Bandi denies rumours

State BJP president Bandi Sanjay has said that the rumours about him being replaced are unfounded. In a statement from his office on Saturday, he asked the party workers not to fall into the trap of Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, who, he alleged, was trying to undermine the confidence of the party workers by spreading rumours.

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The New Indian Express