New Delhi: Defiant Congress MP Y S
Jaganmohan Reddy is all set to kick off the third phase of his
controversial `Odarpu` yatra that could further shrink his
support base among his lawmaker colleagues who are now toeing
the party line.
Jagan, who has completed two spells of the yatra in
several parts of the state despite party chief Sonia Gandhi
advising against it, will address a rally in the temple town
of Tirupati on September 2 on the occasion of the first death
anniversary of his father Y S Rajasekhara Reddy.
The next day, he will resume the yatra to console the
relatives of those who either allegedly committed suicide or
died of shock after the hearing the news of the death of his
father YSR in Prakasam district.
Jagan`s plan could isolate him from his party MPs and
MLAs, who have now fallen in line after the party High Command
told them discreetly not to associate themselves with the
yatra as the Congress does not approve of it.
The party does not subscribe to Jagan`s assertion that it
is a "personal" trip as it feels the tour has all the
But Jagan`s camp denies that the party has told the MPs
and MLAs not to participate in the yatra and maintains it is a
The party had last week summoned some of the MLAs from
the district, including Union Minister D Purandeswari`s
husband Venkateswara Rao, and told them to keep away when the
Kadapa MP visits the district during `Odarpu` yatra.
The MLAs have now decided not to join the yatra and Jagan
also suffered a setback when his supporter and Ongole MP
Srinivasula Reddy announced he would not be joining the tour.
Last week, Telangana MPs, including those considered
close to Jagan, publicly attacked him for his defiant attitude
and threw their weight behind Sonia Gandhi, saying they were
with her and not any "individual".
But, the Jagan camps seems to be unfazed over the
"He (Jagan) is going ahead with the yatra," Ambatti
Rambabu, who was suspended from the Congress for publicly
criticising Rosaiah, told PTI. He also denied Jagan having got
any directive from the party asking to cancel the yatra.
"We have not got any deliberate advice (from the party
High Command)," Ramababu said.
Jagan`s act of defying the High Command has turned even
some of his friends into foes.
For instance, Karimnagar MP Ponnam Prabhakar, who was at
the forefront of the `Jagan for CM` campaign, now says it is
good for both party and Jagan if the yatra does not take