Special Correspondent

No ‘race’ for top post as there is no vacancy: CWC member

HYDERABAD: Congress Working Committee (CWC) member K. Keshava Rao has made a strong pitch in favour of the government headed by K. Rosaiah on Tuesday when he asserted that the dispensation under the new Chief Minister was functioning effectively.

In addition to backing Mr. Rosaiah, Dr. Rao called on veteran party leaders N. Janardhana Reddy and G. Venkataswamy, both of whom were not on the best of terms with former Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy at one time or the other. As his meetings with leaders not in the YSR camp created a political flutter, the pro-Jagan camp faulted him for his remarks on the succession issue.

Denying that he was a contender for the Chief Minister’s post, he dismissed reports that a ‘race’ was on for the top post as there was no vacancy. Since the past two days, the CWC member has been receiving the attention of Congress leaders of all hues because of his easier access to the AICC leadership.

Under examination

Talking to reporters, Dr. Rao said the demand to anoint Mr. Jaganmohan Reddy as the Chief Minister was being examined by the high command and it was better for the leaders to wait for the leadership to communicate its decision on the matter.

On his part, he would convey his views as and when the leadership asked for it.

Earlier in the day, the CWC member met Mr. Janardhana Reddy and Mr. Venkataswamy separately and held hour-long meetings with them. The two veterans reportedly agreed with his perception that the government under Mr. Rosaiah was effectively discharging its duties and it was for the high command to take a final call.

Significantly, Mr. Janardhana Reddy later said that they had discussed about the political situation in the State with Dr. Rao, but Mr. Jagan’s name did not figure in the talks. Mr. Venkataswamy said the high command was closely monitoring thedevelopments and it was likely to decide after the Assembly elections in three States.