AP by­polls likely as Speaker ready to ver­ify res­ig­na­tions

Five YSR Cong MPs had re­signed in April; by­polls will see Naidu and Ja­gan Mo­han fight­ing for supremacy in AP.

The Sunday Guardian - - Nation - S. RAMA KR­ISHNA HY­DER­ABAD

Lok Sabha Speaker Su­mi­tra Ma­ha­jan is ex­pected to sum­mon each one of the five YSR Congress MPs, who had sub­mit­ted their res­ig­na­tions last month, for per­sonal ver­i­fi­ca­tion any­time af­ter Tues­day, 15 May. She is likely to ac­cept the res­ig­na­tions if she is sat­is­fied that they had ten­dered their pa­pers on their own, kick­ing off a mini bat­tle of by­elec­tions in Andhra Pradesh in the next two to three months. The of­fice of the Speaker has made in­di­ca­tions to the five MPs that they will have to be avail­able for any meet­ing with the “Chair” from next week on­wards. The five MPs—Meka­p­ati Ra­jamo­han Reddy (Nel­lore), Y.V. Subba Reddy (On­gole), Dr V. Vara­prasada Rao (Tiru­pati), Y.S. Av­inash Reddy (Kadapa) and P.V. Mithun Reddy (Ra­jam­pet)—had sub­mit­ted their res­ig­na­tions on 6 April.

They had quit their LS seats as part of their protest against the Cen­tre’s re­fusal to grant a spe­cial cat­e­gory sta­tus to Andhra Pradesh. YSR Congress leader and op­po­si­tion MLA Y.S. Ja­gan Mo­han Reddy called upon the TDP MPs to quit for the spe­cial sta­tus cause, so that the Cen­tre would budge.

Ini­tially it was as­sumed that the Speaker might not look into their pa­pers till the next ses­sion that will be held some­time in July-August. Usu­ally the Speaker calls the mem­bers (who have re­signed) dur­ing the As­sem­bly ses­sion in which they quit, but in this case the five MPs had quit on the last day of the Bud­get ses­sion. If there is only six months’ time left to the gen­eral elec­tions, by the time the process of ver­i­fi­ca­tion and ac­cep­tance is com­pleted, then the Elec­tion Com­mis­sion may not hold by­polls.

How­ever, now that the BJP and the YSR Congress have inched closer to each other in Andhra, fol­low­ing the rul­ing TDP pulling out of NDA gov­ern­ment at the Cen­tre, there is a dis­tinct pos­si­bil­ity of by­elec­tions in the Lok Sabha con­stituen­cies held by Ja­gan’s MPs.

Also, any elec­toral set­back to CM Naidu barely six to seven months be­fore the gen­eral elec­tions would brighten the prospects of the op­po­si­tion camp in the state. Ja­gan, who is solely cham­pi­oning the cause of the spe­cial sta­tus, is con­fi­dent of re­tain­ing all five seats.

CM Naidu told his party men dur­ing a re­view meet­ing in Amaravati on Fri­day that they should be ready for a mini­gen­eral elec­tion by July-August. He made it clear that his party would fight all the by­elec­tions and try to win them, too. His state­ment came in the wake of re­ports that Ja­gan might ap­peal to him to sup­port his can­di­dates in the by­elec­tions.

The re­la­tions be­tween CM Naidu and BJP were fur­ther strained af­ter TDP cadre at­tacked the con­voy of BJP na­tional pres­i­dent Amit Shah in Tiru­pati on Fri­day. Ac­tivists de­mand­ing spe­cial sta­tus for the state tried to stop Shah’s car at Alipiri in the foothills of Tiru­mala. They pelted stones on Shah’s con­voy, dam­ag­ing the wind­screens of a car in the con­voy.

The po­lice used force to quell the mob and ar­rested some TDP work­ers in the in­ci­dent. CM Naidu con­demned the at­tack but BJP lead­ers termed it a pre-planned one. BJP MLC in Andhra, Somu Veer­raju vowed to teach TDP and Naidu a les­son in the com­ing months. If by­elec­tions were held in the five va­cated Lok Sabha seats, the BJP might back YSR Congress, sources in the party said.

In Kar­nataka, sev­eral TDP se­nior lead­ers and ac­tivists had cam­paigned for the Congress and ap­pealed to the vot­ers to de­feat the BJP.

AP CM Chan­drababu Naidu

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.