CM seeks dropping of tainted ministers

CM seeks dropping  of tainted ministers
Highlights

Kiran briefs Sonia on AP developments Wants a decision on Botcha holding two...

Kiran briefs Sonia on AP developments

cm2

  • Wants a decision on Botcha holding two posts
  • Also seeks nod for cabinet expansion
  • Crucial meeting with Rahul today
  • DS lobbying for getting back APCC chief's post

Venkat Parsa

New Delhi: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy, in a surprise move on Wednesday, reported to have asked the Congress high command to take decision on the tainted ministers in the state. The Congress is in a tizzy on the stand to be taken against the state ministers, who have been already chargesheeted or facing the prospect of being chargesheeted.

While Mopidevi Venkatramana has already been jailed, two sitting ministers, Dharmana Prasad Rao and Sabitha Indra Reddy, have also been chargesheeted. Similar prospects stare some more state ministers. Kiran Reddy is understood to have urged the party leadership to take a holistic view on dropping all tainted ministers, which is vital for sprucing up the party and the government image.

According to sources, the Chief Minister is impressing upon the high Command to take advantage of the chargesheets against some of the ministers to obtain their resignations and to go in for Cabinet rejig. The party is, however, wary of it, as it could lead to some sort of discontent within the party. The Congress can ill-afford it in the crucial election year. The Congress faces local bodies polls shortly and next year the party faces simultaneous parliament and Assembly polls.

Replacement of APCC president Botcha Satyanarayana is another issue, which the Chief Minister is pressing for, in pursuance of the one-man, one-post principle. The Congress has not made up its mind on this aspect, too. Kiran Reddy on Wednesday called on Congress president Sonia Gandhi and briefed her on the political situation in the state.

The question of the tainted ministers, revamping the party image, aggressively implementing the welfare programmes and strengthening the party organisation and the government functioning in the state were issues that reportedly figured in the meeting lasting over 45 minutes.

A string of meetings took place in the Congress camp in the capital. After the meeting with Sonia Gandhi, Kiran Reddy met AICC general secretary in-charge of Andhra Pradesh Ghulam Nabi Azad late in the evening. He also called on Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh at Krishi Bhavan. Earlier, he had two rounds of meetings with APCC president Botcha Satyanarayana, after the latter was closeted with Ghulam Nabi Azad. AICC secretary K B Krishnamurthy, who handles Andhra Pradesh affairs, also met the Chief Minister.

Former APCC president D Srinivas, who is also camping in the capital and meeting all the top leaders, is also in the race for the APCC president, just in case, the Congress high command agrees to replace Botcha Satyanarayana. D Srinivas's claim to fame is that he was the party president when the Congress came back to power in 2004 and again in 2009.

All eyes are now on the meeting convened by Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Thursday with the Chief Minister and the APCC President, with a view to sprucing up the party and prepare it for the polls.

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