HYDERABAD: The Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) has left the decision of selecting candidates for the upcoming Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha elections to AICC president Mallikarjun Kharge and the party’s Central Election Committee (CEC).
A unanimous resolution to this effect was adopted on Tuesday during the Pradesh Election Committee (PEC) meeting that was attended by Chief Minister A Revanth Reddy at the Gandhi Bhavan here.
Addressing a press conference later, Revanth said that Deputy Chief Minister Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka proposed in the meeting that in case Congress Parliamentary Party chairperson Sonia Gandhi decides to contest for the Lok Sabha from Telangana, the party should try to make her election from the state unanimous.
Revanth, who is also the TPCC president, also said that general category aspirants who wished to contest the Lok Sabha elections can submit applications along with a demand draft of Rs 50,000 while SC, ST and differently-abled persons can do so with a DD of Rs 25,000.
The last date to submit the applications is March 3. The TPCC chief also confirmed that he will be launching the Congress campaign for the coming Lok Sabha elections from Indravelly on February 2.
Revanth revealed that the party has appointed a committee comprising Harish Choudhary, Jignesh Mewani and Vishwajeet to scrutinise and shortlist the applications.
Setting the tone for the elections, he ripped into the BJP, giving the impression that the electoral battle will be between the Congress and the saffron party.
“You may be wondering why I am not speaking about the BRS. The BRS has died in Telangana. If you have observed the statements of KT Rama Rao and Harish Rao, they are attacking the Congress and not the BJP. By this, you can understand that they want Narendra Modi to become the prime minister for a third time,” Revanth said.
Slamming former Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, he said that neither did KCR ask for the promises made under Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014, nor did the BJP-led Centre sanction them in the past 10 years.
“It will be us who will be demanding and sanctioning (promises made under the AP Reorganisation Act). Neither KCR asked, nor Modi honoured,” Revanth said.
He also accused KCR and Modi of bankrupting the state and the country by increasing the debt burden to Rs 7 lakh crore and Rs 100 lakh crore respectively. “The BJP is trying to win the elections by fuelling hatred,” Revanth stated.
“Lakhs of people were rendered homeless due to the ethnic clashes in Manipur, but the prime minister failed to visit the state. Our leader Rahul Gandhi has embarked on his Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra from Manipur to Maharashtra,” he said.
Slamming the BRS, the chief minister accused the pink party of conspiring to defer the swearing-in of Prof M Kodandaram and Amer Ali Khan as MLCs. “The entire state knows the greatness of Kodandaram and his fighting spirit, and yet the BRS was trying to prevent his nomination to the Legislative Council,” Revanth said.
Kaleshwaram documents will be in safe custody
Asked about the judicial inquiry into the Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation (KLIS) project, he said that he has already written to the Chief Justice of the Telangana High Court seeking to constitute a panel of judges, and it will be materialised after the judge responds. He also said that the government has constituted a Vigilance and Enforcement inquiry to keep the documents safe and unearth the misdeeds.
Responding to a question on the alleged irregularities through the Dharani portal, the chief minister said that GOs in violation of rules are being suspended and illegal land transactions are being kept in abeyance. He added that the expert committee on Dharani is looking into the irregularities. According to sources, the attendees put forth a proposal to repeal cases filed against Congress leaders during the PEC meeting. They cited the example of MLC Balmoor Venkat, against whom over 80 cases were filed.
District Congress Committee presidents submitted a list of 186 names to the Pradesh Election Committee for consideration as candidates for the coming General Elections.
‘Unconditional’ Ghar Wapsi for ex-Congress men
According to sources, during the PEC meeting, the party decided to “unconditionally” allow leaders who had left the party to join BRS to return to the Congress. Understandably, some BRS MLAs are also among the leaders who have left the Congress.