Differences cropped up in the Telugu Desam Party again on Sunday over the Telangana issue, with party president N. Chandrababu Naidu and Telangana Forum Convener Nagam Janardhan Reddy holding parallel meetings.
Mr. Naidu reportedly favoured a coordination committee, while the leaders, most of them MLAs, who met at Dr. Reddy's residence, demanded the creation of a Telangana wing of the party. As the differences peaked by evening and threatened to turn into a major crisis, Mr. Naidu called Dr. Reddy and others and managed to quell the trouble.
At a press conference late in the evening after meeting Dr. Reddy and others, the TDP president virtually blamed the Congress for creating problems in other parties over the Telangana issue. The Congress was enacting a drama and creating an impression that the issue was in the hands of Opposition parties. On its part, the TDP had not gone back on the resolution adopted on Telangana and it was for the Congress to take a decision on the issue, he added.
Dr. Reddy did a volte face after stating in the afternoon that he would not attend Mr. Naidu's meeting as he did not receive the call. He, along with Mr. Dayakar Rao and Mr. Srihari, joined Mr. Naidu around 7.45 p.m.
There was trouble right from the morning as these three senior leaders skipped the meeting at Mr. Naidu's residence called to discuss both the Telangana issue and farmers' problems. These “hardliners” wanted the party to take a decisive action and allow formation of a separate wing but Mr. Naidu was not keen on this. This gave rise to speculation that there would be a showdown and that action would be initiated against Dr. Reddy.
Within hours, two groups emerged within the Telangana group, with the MLAs proceeding to Dr. Reddy's residence, while others like T. Devender Goud, known to have differences with Dr. Reddy, L. Ramana, G. Sayanna, Nama Nageswara Rao, Ramesh Rathod, Motkupalli Narasimhulu and T. Srinivas Yadav attending Mr. Naidu's meeting.
After the meeting around 2.30 p.m., Dr. Reddy told journalists that he and other MLAs had no differences with Mr. Naidu and were not planning to quit the party. All they wanted was a Telangana wing as it would create confidence among people in the region that the party favoured statehood for Telangana.