Ruling Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) and BJP lost some key leaders to Congress during the last couple of months.
The Congress too has suffered setbacks with some of its leaders defecting to the ruling party.
Friday witnessed party hopping by some more leaders.
BJP leader and former MLA Revuri Prakash Reddy joined the Congress in the presence of Rahul Gandhi, who was campaigning in the state. This came a few days after state Congress President A. Revanth Reddy met Prakash Reddy and invited him to join the party.
Prakash Reddy had resigned from the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) to join the BJP in 2019. He was then the politburo member of TDP.
The TDP, which is still undecided on contesting the elections in Telangana due to the arrest of its leader and former Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu in a corruption case in Andhra Pradesh, suffered a blow on Friday when its politburo member Ravula Chandrasekhar Reddy joined the BRS.
BRS Working President K. T. Rama Rao welcomed him into the party. One of the last key leaders of TDP in Telangana, Chandrasekhar Reddy was with the party since 1982 when it was floated by N.T. Rama Rao. He was elected twice to the Andhra Pradesh Assembly from Wanaparthy. He had also served as a member of Rajya Sabha.
Minister for Panchayat Raj E. Dayakar Rao, who was Chandrasekhar Reddy’s colleague in TDP, played a key role in bringing him into the BRS. Congress leader Jitta Balakrishna Reddy also joined the BRS on Friday. It’s a home coming for Balakrishna Reddy. He had quit TRS (now BRS) to float Yuva Telangana Party. Last year, he merged his Yuva Telangana Party with the BJP last year. Unhappy over being sidelined by the BJP leadership, he joined Congress in July.
As the Congress leadership rejected his demand for Assembly ticket from Bhongir, he decided to switch loyalties to BRS.
Former president of Telangana Non Gazetted Officers’ Association Mamila Rajender also joined the ruling party.
Meanwhile, Congress received a jolt with TPCC Vice President Dr Cheruku Sudhakar resigning from the party. Telangana Inti Party leader Sudhakar had joined Congress last month and had merged his party with the grand old party.
Congress MP Komatireddy Venkat Reddy, however, was unhappy over Sudhakar being admitted into the party. In March this year, an audio recording of a phone call, purportedly made by Venkat Reddy, threatening to kill Sudhakar and his son Dr Suhas, went viral on social media.
Sudhakar is likely to join the BRS soon. The joining will give some relief to the ruling party, which has lost several leaders including a couple of sitting legislators to the Congress party in the last couple of months.
In another development, a section of Congress leaders from Chennur staged a protest near a hotel in Karimnagar where Rahul Gandhi was staying. They were carrying placards with the slogans save Congress save Chennur. They were demanding that Chennur seat should not be given to CPI under seat sharing agreement.