30 Cong MLAs to leave party in January

 The Congress in Andhra Pradesh is bracing for large scale exodus from its ranks come New Year with nearly 30 of its legislators, including ministers, are said to be readying for a jump to either YSR Congress or the Telugu Desam.

The desertion is largely in the Seemandhra region, where Congress leaders support a united Andhra and are dismayed over the way the party high command handled the Telangana issue.

Some legislators of the erstwhile Praja Rajyam Party, which merged with the Congress later, are mulling a return to the TDP which they earlier left for the PRP, while others are considering vowing their allegiance to Jaganmohan Reddy’s YSR Congress.

Last week, Congress legislator Rajanna Dora from APCC chief Botsa Satyanarayana’s home district of Vizaianagaram joined the YSR Congress, while former minister and senior MLA Dharmana Prasada Rao is also said to be on his way to Jagan’s party.

Giving credence

“I have district-wise information about those thirty who are making plans to cross over. Only weak-minded and with vested interests and a lust for power are trying to leave the Congress,” Botsa said giving credence to the exodus talk at the Congress party headquarters here on Friday.

“If a good worker leaves the party then I can say that it was a loss, but party will also suffer if 100 turncoats stayed in. That way, it is good for such people to leave the party," he said, putting up a brave face and predicting that the “turncoats” will never return to the Assembly.

Recently, BJP leader M Venkaiah Naidu also claimed some Congress ministers were seeking to join his party.

“These leaders are worried about their political future after Congress’ decision to bifurcate the state and the severe backlash the party is facing in Seemandhra,” he said.
However, not everyone finds an open door in other parties. Former minister and MLA J C Diwakar Reddy eyed a position in YSR Congress having been served a show-cause for criticising Congress president Sonia Gandhi over the Telangana issue.

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