Parkal candidate: Congress men up in arms

HYDERABAD/WARANGAL:� With the word around that TDP leader S Samma Rao has been chosen as Congress nominee for Parkal segment, chief whip Gandra Venkataramana Reddy, who has been lobbying with the chief minister for the ticket for his wife Jyothi, met Kiran Kumar Reddy on Wednesday and requested him to review his decision.
Till now, Venkataramana Reddy was confident that his wife would be fielded. As he happens to be in the chief minister’ camp, it was widely believed that he would land the ticket for his wife.
But when the tickets were finalised in Delhi on Tuesday, the party high command preferred a BC instead of a Reddy for Parkal as the Congress has become ‘Reddy-heavy’ already and yet no Reddy was identifying with either Kiran Kumar or the party. A majority of them have shifted their loyalty to YS Jagan Mohan Reddy.
In fact, IT minister Ponnala Lakshmaiah had plumped for a BC to send a message to BCs across the state that the Congress cared for them. Accordingly, Samma Rao has been asked to resign from TDP which he did and is now waiting to file his nomination papers.
After meet the chief minister, Venkataramana Reddy said that he had brought to the notice of the chief minister the possibility of party workers’ feelings being hurt in event of aTDP leader being fielded. “I have brought to his notice, as president of Warangal District Committee, how foolhardy it would be to field Samma Rao. This is not just my opinion, but it is the opinion of every worker in the constituency,” he told reporters. When he and his wife were with the chief minister, his supporter were outside camp office raising slogans that they would ensure defeat of Samma Rao if the party chose to field him.
Since Tuesday night, Congress workers were up in arms in Warangal over the party favouring Samma Rao, who ditched the party 10 years ago after winning as ZPTC member and joined the TDP to become ZP vice-chairman. “Workers were losing faith,” Enumamula market committee former director V Surender Reddy, a supporter of Gandra Venkata Ramana Reddy, said.