T-Congress leaders firm on going alone in polls, while Digvijay hints at continuing efforts to forge alliance with TRS

Congress leaders in Telangana are at their wits end with the high command hinting that talks are on with the TRS for alliance while a majority of them have asserted that it was better to go alone in elections.

On Saturday, two contradictory statements emerged from the Congress leadership. In New Delhi, AICC general secretary Digvijay Singh said leaders were in touch with TRS Rajya Sabha member K. Keshava Rao to discuss alliance. “We are going to meet again on Monday to continue the efforts to forge an alliance,” he told reporters.

But in Hyderabad, the Congress leaders were seething with anger at the TRS chief touring the region and announcing party candidates much to their chagrin. At a meeting held in the residence of former Minister K. Jana Reddy, overwhelming majority of leaders opposed alliance and decided to fight the elections on their own. They wrote a letter to party chief Sonia Gandhi opposing the alliance.

Former Union Minister S. Jaipal Reddy, after interacting with senior Telangana Congress leaders, too expressed similar views. “The majority leaders want us to go alone in the elections. But, the final call will be taken by the high command,” he said. He faulted the TRS chief’s unilateral decision in naming the candidates for the elections.

Days after the TRS chief K. Chandrasekhar Rao made it clear that he would not merge his party with the Congress and that a committee headed by Mr. Keshava Rao would hold consultations with likeminded parties for future alliance, the Congress leaders felt that it was better for them to go alone.

“We are not going to run after other parties to forge electoral alliance. We have the confidence to win on our own strength,” Mr. Jana Reddy told the reporters. He was formally elected as the coordinator of Telangana Congress leaders to chalk out action plan to face the local and urban bodies besides the general elections.

Source said the leaders wanted the party to go all out and highlight the contribution of AICC president Sonia Gandhi in fulfilling her promise. “We should not forget how against all odds she stuck to her promise and saw to it that Telangana was created. There were uproarious scenes in Parliament, but she was not deterred by the ugly incidents and ensured passage of the bifurcation Bill,” Mr. Jana Reddy said.

A section of the leadership maintained that the Congress with 50 MLAs would be a major loser if it forged an alliance.

However, some leaders from North Telangana wanted the party to reconsider its decision and enter into an electoral alliance while those from South Telangana opposed it.