Outgoing Pyla Sominaidu hands over charge

Former Vijaya Krishna Super Bazar Chairman Adapa Nagendra and former Congress party floor leader in the Municipal Corporation Meesala Rajeswara Rao took charge as City Congress party President and Working President respectively amidst bonhomie at the Andhra Ratna Bhavan here on Monday.

Outgoing president Pyla Sominaidu handed over charge to the new incumbents. Vijayawada MP Lagadapati Rajagopal honoured them with tri-coloured scarves.

The two presidents were appointed by the party high command in a bid to prevent the bleeding of activists to the YSR Congress Party. Mr. Nagendra belongs to the Kapu community and Mr. Rajeswara Rao is from the Scheduled Caste community.

The new incumbents launched the party membership drive immediately after taking charge. Former Minister Devineni Rajasekhar, Mr. Rajagopal, Vijayawada MLAs Malladi Vishnu, Vellampalli Srinivas, Yelamanchili Ravi, MLC Ilapuram Venkaiah, PCC Secretary Kolanukonda Sivaji and several other leaders paid membership fee and submitted the filled in application form.

The PCC had announced a few days ago that a membership drive would be launched on the birth anniversary of Indira Gandhi. While Mr. Nagendra occupied the chair used by the former president in the corner room of Andhra Ratna Bhavan, an additional chair was put for Mr. Rajeswara Rao at one side of the desk. Former Mayors of city M. Ratnabindu and Mallika Begum, former deputy mayors Samanthapudi Narasaraju and Anne Prassanna, former city president Kadiya Butchibabu, and city general secretary A.K. Ansari participated in the membership drive.

Some party activists, however, felt that the function in which the incumbents took charge lacked fanfare. It has been a tradition for the incumbents to come to the Andhra Ratna Bhavan in a rally and fireworks burst as a mark of celebration. These acted as a moral boost to party activists who work selflessly for the party, some leaders said.

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