Majority of the MPs are reluctant to enter the electoral fray in their region

The AICC observers deputed to Andhra Pradesh to scout for suitable candidates for the assembly and parliamentary elections are facing a piquant situation. There are more contenders in Telangana but many sitting MPs face complaints while those from Seemandhra dread entering the fray.

This fear of losing has gone to such an extent that the sitting MPs from Seemandhra even avoided meeting these observers throwing hints that they may not contest on the party ticket. As many as 42 observers mostly legislators from Karnataka have been drafted for the purpose of taking grass roots level feedback on the right candidates to be fielded in the general elections. Of this at least 16 observers toured the constituencies allotted to them and remaining may finish the task after the Sankranti festival.

Those touring Telangana districts were flooded with complaints from local leaders against the sitting MPs and senior leaders of Malkajgiri, Bhongir and Khammam constituencies. At least five MLAs from Malkajgiri parliamentary constituency opposed ticket to Union Minister Sarvey Satyanarayana representing it.

Tiff in Nalgonda

In Nalgonda, there was a tiff between the followers of Rajya Sabha member Palvai Goverdhan Reddy and former Minister Komatireddy Venkat Reddy, whose brother represents the Bhongir Lok Sabha seat. In Khammam too differences among the party leaders came to the fore when they met the observer.

In Seemandhra half-a-dozen sitting MPs did not bother to meet the observers. MPs like Lagadapati Rajagopal, Vundavalli Arun Kumar, A.Saipratap, Sabbam Hari, G.V.Harsha Kumar, Ananta Venkatarami Reddy, Rayapati Sambasiva Rao and Kanumuri Bapiraju have almost made up their mind against fighting polls on Congress ticket. They are at loggerheads with the high command after the decision to divide the State. Some of them are looking towards Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy to launch a new party.

Congress party loyalists like Union Ministers – D. Purandeswari, K. S. Rao, M. M. Pallam Raju, Panabaka Lakshmi and K. C. Deo besides MPs Botcha Jhansi and Killi Kruparani may not turn down the party ticket but the local Congress leaders predict tough time for them.

A PCC functionary maintained that the mood in the Seeemandhra Congress camp was downcast as they face public outrage at the party’s decision on bifurcation. Several MLAs are all set to defect to other parties after January 23, deadline for debate on AP Reorganisation Bill in Assembly. “The party may be forced to look out for second rung leaders to contest the assembly and parliamentary constituencies as the senior politicians are afraid of losing,” a senior Congress leader remarked.