Gentlemen don't issue threats, Cong to Jagan

Last Updated 12 January 2011, 15:16 IST

"Gentlemen do not issue threats in the first place and if they do, they carry out their threats," party spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi told reporters giving enough hints that the party views the threat by the rebel leader as an empty one.

Reddy, who has revolted against the Congress in Andhra Pradesh, took his battle to Delhi yesterday by demonstrating his clout in the state party unit with two Congress MPs and 23 MLAs on his side during a one-day protest fast here on a water dispute issue.
"Currently I am doing a favour to the Congress party because if my MLAs resign, the government there will fall. Had I wanted, I could have done it a long time ago. I am a gentleman. So I am doing a favour to the Congress party," Jagan had said yestersday.
The Congress has 155 MLAs in the 294-member Andhra Pradesh Assembly and the Congress government can come under pressure if the 23 MLAs withdraw support.

Singhvi, though skeptical on the number of MLAs present in Jagan's programme, sought to put such party leaders on tenterhooks, saying, "appropriate action will be taken at approrpriate time keeping in view all aspects and our larger strategy for the state."
He said that there was "nothing like a threat to the state government. We are not sure of even the figure (of MLAs present in Jagan's meeting)."

Congress had yesterday also dismissed Jagan's claim as an "illusion", saying that the Kiran Reddy government was never and would never face any danger.

Congress government in Andhra Pradesh was never under any threat, is not under any threat and would never be. If any person has any illusions at all, they will be demystified soon," Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari had said.

The assertions by Congress spokespersons also indicate that the party has perhaps chalked out a contingency plan in view of the possibility of few MLAs withdrawing support from the state government.

The party is banking heavily on newly installed Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy to tackle the situation giving more than hints that it was an "acid test" and if he could prove his leadership, it would be better for him and the party.

Union Law Minister M Veerappa Moily also expressed the confidence that the Congress government in the state will not fall when asked about Jagan's claim that the Andhra Pradesh government was at his mercy.

Moily, who is in charge of Congress affairs in Andhra Pradesh, had yesterday termed the present crisis as "temporary ripples in the water" and said "everything will be set right soon".

(Published 12 January 2011, 15:16 IST)

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