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Congress to protest defections from tomorrow

Congress to protest defections from tomorrow
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The Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee TPCC has decided to hold protests from Tuesday opposing the defections it believes were engineered by Telangana Rashtra Samithi and will resort to constitutional methods against poaching of members by Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao

Hyderabad: The Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) has decided to hold protests from Tuesday opposing the defections it believes were engineered by Telangana Rashtra Samithi and will resort to constitutional methods against ‘poaching’ of members by Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao.

A decision to this effect was taken at an emergency meeting of the Congress Legislature Party on Sunday – just a day after two MLAs of the party announced their intention to join the TRS. The meeting was chaired by CLP leader Bhatti Vikramarka. TPCC president and other important leaders were present at the meeting.

On Saturday, Congress MLAs Athram Sakku and Rega Kantha Rao issued a joint statement that they have decided to join the Telangana Rashtra Samithi and have discussed the matter with KCR.The TPCC now wants the government to take immediate action against those who are defecting to TRS and see that the Speaker cancels their membership of the state Legislature Assembly.

Uttam Kumar Reddy accused KCR of turning Telangana State into a symbol of oppression and injustices. He said KCR was expected to act like a statesman after becoming the Chief Minister for second term. However, he said, KCR has again resorted to cheap politics by encouraging defections in opposition parties. He condemned KCR for making Athram Sakku and Rega Kantha Rao join TRS. He maintained that it was done only to illegally win the fifth MLC seat in forthcoming elections.

Uttam Kumar Reddy said it was unconstitutional and unethical on the part of TRS to field the fifth candidate in the MLC elections without having the required numerical strength. He said both the turncoat MLAs should be disqualified immediately and deprived of voting rights in the MLC elections. "In his first term as CM, KCR gained notoriety for indulging in cheap politics. We expected that at least this time he would behave properly. But as against everyone's expectation, KCR is again resorting to cheap and downmarket politics," he alleged.

The TPCC chief said it was essential for all, especially elected representatives, to honour the decision of the people in order to facilitate the functioning of State in a democratic manner. "When we were approached for support for the unanimous elections of Assembly Speaker and Deputy Speaker, we cooperated with the TRS as we did not have the required numbers.

However, TRS has fielded a fifth candidate in MLC elections, despite knowing well that it had the strength to get only four MLCs. This was done only to encourage defections and horse trading. By making two Congress MLAs defect to TRS, KCR has smothered democracy again," he said.The Congress has 19 MLAs in the House and it requires two more MLAs -- total 21, to win the MLC election from the Assembly quota.

The party expected that it could win easily with the support of two Telugu Desam MLAs. However, Telugu Desam MLA Sandra Venkata Viraiah has also announced his intention to join the TRS. With this only one vote would be available to the Congress from TD.With the defection of two MLAs, the Congress votes have gone down to 18, including one vote of Telugu Desam.

With this, the chances for the MIM candidate being supported by TRS to win the MLC seat have brightened. The Congress MLAs held dharna at the Gandhi statue in front of the Assembly led by Uttam Kumar Reddy and CLP leader Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka.

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