Trouble for Andhra CM as health minister resigns

Last Updated: Thursday, March 22, 2012 - 19:36

Hyderabad: Triggering a virtual rebellion
against Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy,
state Health Minister DL Ravindra Reddy on Thursday sent his
resignation to Congress president Sonia Gandhi "taking moral
responsibility" for the party`s poor show in the by-elections.

Reddy, who had been at loggerheads with the CM for sometime now, faxed his resignation letter to Gandhi after the party`s rout in the by-elections to seven Assembly constituencies and suggested that the entire Cabinet,
including Kiran, quit to give a "free hand" to the Congress
President for "cleansing" the government and the party in the
state.

Raising his voice against the CM, his deputy
Damodar Rajanarasimha Rao suggested that Kiran better "step
aside" if he could not set things in order.

"The by-election results are a serious warning to the
Congress and the government," Damodar observed today.

Former minister P Shanker Rao also demanded that the
Cabinet own responsibility for the bypoll debacle and quit at
once.

Other senior leaders of the party, including some former
ministers and leaders of Telangana, too started seeking the
sack of the CM, holding him squarely responsible
for the drubbing in the by-elections.

The Deputy CM held an informal meeting with
ministers and legislators belonging to Scheduled Castes in the
Assembly today wherein the by-poll results were discussed.

Sources said the Deputy Chief Minister was trying to shore
up support to fellow SC legislators in his support to
challenge the CM.

For the record, Damodar said the SC ministers and
legislators would meet formally on Monday to discuss the
implementation of the Scheduled Castes Sub-Plan and other
issues related to the community.

At the same time, some senior leaders from Telangana
region are gunning for Pradesh Congress Committee president
Botsa Satyanarayana`s head as well, holding him "equally
responsible" for the sorry state of affairs.

Ravindra Reddy said the rebellion in the party might grow
if results of the impending by-elections to 18 Assembly
constituencies and Nellore Lok Sabha seat (that has seven
Assembly segments under it) went against the party.

"It is not just the by-elections to seven Assembly
constituencies but the party has been facing rout in
successive elections right from the election of Legislative
Council members (from Local Authorities Constituencies) and
the Kadapa by-elections.

"If corrective steps are not taken, it will be worse for
the party in the forthcoming by-polls as well," he warned.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, March 22, 2012 - 13:16

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