Andhra Pradesh | Posted on Jan 24, 2012 at 09:05am IST
AP: Deputy CM fires salvo at Kiran Kumar Reddy
indianexpress Express News Service , The New Indian Express
HYDERABAD: After firing the first salvo against chief minister N Kiran
Kumar Reddy at the first meeting of the Congress Coordination
Committee on January 5, deputy chief minister Damodar Rajanarasimha on
Monday is believed to have come down heavily on him once again,
describing him as "authoritarian and anti-Dalit".
"We Dalits cannot take things lying low anymore.
We will organise Dalit Sadassus and assert ourselves.
As regards the Telangana movement, I have so far been gagged.
From now on I will bring all Telangana forces together," Rajanarasimha
told his confidants.
Though Rajanarasimha's tirade went to the notice of the chief
minister, he decided to play it cool and did not raise the issue
either with his colleagues or with his confidants.
According to highly placed sources , Rajanarasimha, who set his sights
on the chief minister's post long ago, burst out at the chief minister
for the "unceremonious" dismissal of handlooms and textiles minister P
Shankar Rao from the cabinet.
Though Shankara Rao is a Mala, Rajanarasimha, a Madiga, championed his
cause, apparently in an attempt to use it as a weapon to target Kiran
In fact, both Malas and Madigas, though belong to Scheduled Castes, do
not see eye to eye.
According to sources, though Rajanarasimha's long-term objective is to
step into Kiran Kumar Reddy's shoes, he, for the time being, is eyeing
the home portfolio since he believes that the home department should
be held by deputy chief minister and no one else.
Since the high command promised cabinet reshuffle before the
commencement of the budget session of the Assembly, which is likely to
be February 13, Rajanarasimha appears to be turning the heat on the
chief minister as well as on the party high command to achieve what he
is after. He is quoted as having said: "Kiran Kumar Reddy is acting
like a dictator.
If the lot of Dalits improves, why should it become an eyesore to him?
Why should he sack Shankar Rao from the cabinet? He could have asked
him to resign.
Shankar Rao's sacking will cast a long shadow on the Congress.
It is sure to distance Dalits from the party.
Dalits will one day settle scores with the chief minister." He is
understood to have forecast a serious crisis after the by-elections
and Kiran may have to face a no-confidence motion in November.
Rajanarasimha is also understood to have taken potshots at the party
high command as well.
"I had brought to the notice of AICC general secretary Ghulam Nabi
Azad the way Shankar Rao has been shown the door.
But there was no response from him," he said.
Azad, according to him, is more interested in spending time with
industrialists than listening to the woes of the party workers.
Party functionaries waited for hours for him at the Lake View Guest
House but he was nowhere to be found.
He hardly spent two hours at Gandhi Bhavan, he remarked.
Rajanarasimha was also unhappy over the way Kiran Kumar Reddy was
governing the state.
"Kiran appears to be under the impression that welfare schemes would
fetch seats in elections.
If it was true, the Congress should have bagged more than 250 seats in
the 2009 elections," he said, underlining the need for a leader to
blend flexibility with firmness in dealing with issues and colleagues.
"The CM is not above board as an administrator.
There are murmurs that all is not well in the allocation of SEZs,
mining leases and Jalayagnam contracts,'' he said, adding that as a
leader too, he had failed since there was dissatisfaction among MLAs
over appointing them to nominated posts.
"Though there are so many grey areas in his functioning, the high
command is not taking it into consideration.''
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