Congress firm on contesting election to Telangana Council Chairman’s post

Undeterred by the defection of five MLCs to the TRS, the Congress has decided to contest the election to the post of Chairman of the Telangana Legislative Council on July 2.

The idea, it is understood, is to get the five defectors disqualified under the Anti-Defection Law. Despite its strength coming down to 12 in the 40-member House, the Congress is planning to fight the elections only to corner the defectors.

A senior TPCC leader, who is also an MLC, told The Hindu that the Leader of Opposition D. Srinivas will issue a Whip to all the party MLCs. “The five MLCs, who switched loyalty, will also have to accept the whip and fall in line. If they defy the whip and support the TRS, they are liable to be disqualified,” the leader maintained.

Congress leaders point out that the TRS government, keeping in mind the action of the Congress party, has decided to hold the Council session on war-footing. “They are worried that the Chairman, Nethi Vidyasagar, may initiate disqualification proceedings against the defectors. Hence, the House is being convened to elect a new Chairman and pre-empt possible disciplinary action,” sources said.

The Congress legislators met at the residence of Mr. Srinivas in the evening to take stock of the situation. The Congress Legislature Party leader K. Jana Reddy, Mr. Srinivas and the TPCC chief Ponnala Lakshmaiah are meeting in Gandhi Bhavan on Monday to chalk out action plan for the elections.

Although, the Congress party is contesting the polls, not many party legislators are keen on entering the fray as chairman candidate. A senior MLC said he would not contest the election for the chairman’s post as the TRS has the strength to wrest the seat. Yet another MLC said efforts were on to choose a candidate between a Dalit and a minority.

The TRS has 15 members after the defections, Congress (12), TDP (four), MIM (two) and two PDF members. There are five vacancies and the magic figure in the truncated House is 18.

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Printable version | Aug 2, 2021 12:35:49 PM |

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