A temporary truce has been made, but Congress leaders in the state feel that Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy and his deputy Damodar Rajanarasimha are not done yet. The recent trouble began when Reddy decided to drop the Andole constituency — which Rajanarasimha represents — from the Indiramma Baata programme beginning October 29.
The Deputy Chief Minister felt that Reddy has been unilateral in making decisions and did not consult him when the programme was finalised; he was angry with Reddy for not according clearance for the lift irrigation project that would get water to Andole in Medak district.
However, Andhra Pradesh Congress chief Botcha Satyanarayana on Friday succeeded in convincing Rajanarasimha to participate in the Indiramma Baata, only on the condition that Reddy sanctions around Rs 40 crore to the Signur Lift Irrigation Project immediately.
Rajanarasimha was irked when Reddy, who presides over meetings with officials and ministers to finalise programmes for Indiramma Baata, left the responsibility for Medak district to the district in-charge minister DK Aruna. Rajanarasimha did not care to attend the meeting since Aruna is junior in position to him.
Rajanarasimha took serious exception to the way Reddy was apparently trying to marginalise him; so he seems to have decided to keep away from the Chief Minister’s tour. Reddy then called him up. But, Rajanarasimha, say sources, was so angry with Reddy that did not even answer to the Reddy’s phone call on Thursday.
State Government Whip T Jayaprakash Reddy, a close aide of the Chief Minister, who also hails from Medak district, said that Reddy had not included Andole in his itinerary for various reasons. But he would tour the constituency on the next leg.
With the cold war between the top two in the government simmering, PCC chief Satyanarayana called on Rajanarasimha in the secretariat here on Friday and held discussions. Botcha later told reporters that he had come to know about the differences between the two leaders and was trying to sort out the matter. Meanwhile, Rajanarasimha is understood to have told his aides at the secretariat on Thursday that he was unhappy that work on the Singur Lift Irrigation Project in Andole had not begun yet. The project is supposed to irrigate about 45,000 acres of land. Though assured by YS Rajasekhara Reddy during his padayatra and the government sanctioned `90 crore for it later, the project has not been taken up allegedly because major irrigation minister Peddi Sudarshan Reddy is opposing any diversion of Singur water from Nizamabad to Andole in Medak district. “It is for the Chief Minister to deal with Sudarshan Reddy,” Rajanarasimha said.
Interestingly, the Indiramma Baata was originally scheduled between October 9 and 11. But, it was deferred at Rajanarasimha’s request, as he was then visiting the UK.