Damodar Rajanarasimha, D. Srinivas, K. Jana Reddy and N. Uttam Kumar Reddy failed to make the cut

With the Congress high command reposing faith in him, former Information and Technology Minister Ponnala Lakshmaiah pipped top contenders to bag the coveted post of Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee president.

In a sense, the Congress leadership chose to redraw its strategy in identifying leaders from the weaker sections to carry forward their programme in the days to come. Mr. Lakshmaiah’s selection is a clear indication that the Congress is keen on the votes of SCs/STs, BCs and minorities to win at the hustings.

Mr. Lakshmaiah’s selection is certainly a surprise for the vast sections of the partymen in the region as top contenders such as former Deputy Chief Minister C. Damodar Rajanarasimha, former PCC chief D. Srinivas, former Ministers – K. Jana Reddy and N. Uttam Kumar Reddy -- and others had failed to make the cut.

It emerged clear that the four-time MLA from Jangaon in Warangal district was to be named for the top post after he was asked to meet AICC general secretary Digvijay Singh on Tuesday. He was in the reckoning for PCC chief’s post along with Mr. Srinivas and Rajya Sabha member V. Hanumantha Rao.

Mr. Lakshmaiah is master’s degree holder in mechanical engineering from Oklahoma State University in 1969. He made his political debut 1989 as MLA from Jangaon and went on to win in 1999, 2004 and 2009. He was the Major Irrigation Minister in YSR Government in 2004-2009. He held the Information Technology in the Kiran Kumar Reddy Government till recently.