Hyderabad: A condolence meeting organised by the Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee for YS Rajasekhara Reddy on Sunday turned out to be an occasion for open campaigning for his son Jaganmohan to take over as next chief minister.
At the end of the 10-minute multi-religious prayers and
reading out of condolence messages and a two-minute silence, a
crowd assembled in the PCC HQ Gandhi Bhavan, majority of whom
were young supporters of Jaganmohan including women, got up
shouting slogans demanding that YSR`s son should be made the
next chief minister.
"We want Jagan," said a number of posters carrying his
pictures while a number of others carried pictures of YSR.
Jaganmohan himself was not present on the occasion. He
had just arrived here from Idupulapaya, two days after last
rites for his late father.
There were also slogans shouted against some leaders who
had criticised the attempts to make Jaganmohan the next chief
"VHR go back," read one of the posters, which was a
reference to Rajya Sabha member V Hanumant Rao who had
yesterday criticised some comparison of Jaganmohan with late
Rajiv Gandi who assumed Prime Ministership after the death of
The shouting continued in the presence of interim Chief
Minister K Rosaiah, PCC president D Srinivas, Union Minister
Jaipal Reddy, who all quietly left when slogan shouting did
not stop despite appeals that it was an occasion for silent
Hanumant Rao and K Kesava Rao, former PCC president who
too criticised attempts towards "dynastic succession", also
left along with other leaders.
As the shouting continued, KVP Ramachandra Rao, Rajya
Sabha member and adviser to the late chief minister, appeared
on the stage and appealed to them to remain calm.
When the appeal fell on deaf ears, he broke into tears
and said if YSR`s soul has to rest in peace, they should show
the respect to him by observing silence.
He said Congress president Sonia Gandhi was fully aware
of YSR`s popularity with the masses and the support enjoyed by
Jaganmohan with YSR supporters and Congress workers.
He appealed to the restive supporters to observe a
two-minute silence which they heeded. At the end of it, there
was again slogan shouting and the crowd started dispersing.