Meets YSRC president Jaganmohan Reddy in Chanchalguda jail

Former Union Minister and polit bureau member of Telugu Desam Party, who has been staying away from party activities for over six months now, Ummareddy Venkateswarlu, formally joined the YSR Congress here on Tuesday.

Earlier in the day, he went to Chanchalguda prison to meet the president of YSRC and Kadapa MP, Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy, and was with him for about half-an-hour.

Alleges drift in policies

Speaking to reporters after coming out of jail, Mr. Venkateswarlu alleged that the TDP had completely deviated from the basic principles of party founder N.T. Rama Rao. Instead of fighting the Congress, it has colluded with the ruling party to victimise the family of late Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, including Mr. Jagan. He was pained by such a drift in the founding principles of the TDP and was forced to leave the party, he stated.

Later, he proceeded to the Lotus Pond residence of Mr. Jagan and formally joined the YSRC in the presence of honorary president of the party Y.S. Vijayamma. Speaking after joining the new party, he said he was hopeful that the welfare schemes for the poor would be better implemented under the leadership of Mr. Jagan as had happened during the YSR regime.

Vaddepalli follows suit

A senior TDP leader, Mr. Venkateswarlu was maintaining a distance from the party by keeping away even from the polit bureau meetings in recent months. His son is with the YSRC.

Meanwhile, Congress leader Vaddepalli Narsing Rao who contested from the Kukatpally Assembly constituency on the ruling party ticket in the 2009 elections, also called on Mr. Jagan in Chachalguda jail. He told reporters later that he would join the YSRC on Wednesday.