Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today hailed the late Y S Rajasekhara Reddy as a “great leader from Andhra Pradesh”, in an apparent bid to mollify his defiant son Jagan from taking out a yatra despite warning from Congress high command.

“Let me once again remember a great leader from Andhra Pradesh and his love and concern for his people. Tomorrow will be his first death anniversary,” Mr. Singh said.

Laying the foundation stone for the new integrated terminal at the airport here, he said YSR would have indeed been “very happy to see the beginning of this project for modernisation and upgradation of the Tirupati Airport.”

Mr. Singh recalled that while laying the foundation of the manufacturing plant being set up by NTPC-BHEL Power Projects Limited earlier in the day he had paid tribute to the late Chief Minister and his vision.

The Prime Minister’s comments came couple of days ahead of Jagan’s plans to go ahead with his yatra which has raised a controversy in the Congress and especially in the state unit.

A few days back, Congress high command had decided to give Rs. one lakh to the families of those who committed suicide in the wake of the death of YSR.

The move is seen as an attempt to take the wind out of sails of Mr. Jagan who has been defying the party high command over undertaking the ‘Odarpu yatra.’