Mandali Buddha Prasad, Pinnamaneni also in line
Senior Congress leader and former Minister J.C. Diwakar Reddy formally joined the Telugu Desam Party in the presence of party president N. Chandrababu Naidu on Sunday.
Mr. Reddy was accompanied by his son J.C. Pavan Kumar Reddy. The development was, however, kept low key as the TDP leadership was still in the process of pacifying a section of leaders from Anantapur district who are strongly opposed to Mr. Diwakar Reddy’s entry into the party.
The Congress was sure to be wiped out in Andhra Pradesh, he said. “This is evident from the fact that the party leaders are offering tickets to candidates on a platter as there are not takers.”
Diwakar Reddy recalled how former Chief Minister late Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy took objection when he appreciated the initiatives launched by Mr. Naidu during his tenure. He said YSRC president Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy was no match for Mr. Naidu. He asserted that the TDP was set to form the government in Andhra Pradesh and assured his full cooperation to whatever responsibility the party would entrust him.
Setback for Congress in Krishna
Vijayawada Special Correspondent adds:
Two second generation Congress leaders and former Ministers Mandali Buddha Prasad and Pinnamaneni Venkateswara Rao are reportedly planning to join the TDP dealing a big blow to the party in the district.
Mr Buddha Prasad who is the Andhra Pradesh Official Language Commission chairman resigned from the Congress even before the Lok Sabha passed the Andhra Pradesh State Reorganisation Bill.
Mr Buddha Prasad and Mr Venkateswara Rao met Mr. Chandrababu Naidu in Hyderabad on Sunday and discussed various issues with him for over an hour.
Mr Buddha Prasad said that he and Mr Venkateswara Rao decided to join the TDP after carefully considering the situation. A strong and experienced leader was needed to salvage residual Andhra Pradesh after bifurcation. Mr Buddha Prasad said that Mr Naidu was the only leader in the State who had the experience and knowledge to develop residual Andhra Pradesh. Another leader would not be able to deal with the kind of pressure that would be put by Telangana leaders, he said.
The two leaders would officially join the party when Mr Naidu comes to Vijayawada next week.