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Andhra Pradesh: Trouble deepens for KCR

By Mohammed Siddique in Hyderabad
Last updated on: June 18, 2009 20:56 IST
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The beleaguered leader of Telangana Rashtra Samiti K Chandrasekhara Rao on Thursday suffered another major blow when his close aide and party general secretary Habib Abdul Rahman joined the ranks with the party rebels, further deepening the crisis in the party.

It came on a day when the other rebel led by party Member of Legislative Council K Dilip Kumar formally launched a new forum Telangana Vimochana Samiti to organize a new movement for the statehood of Telangana.

TVS was unveiled at a meeting of the intellectuals and activists from different walks of life at Harihara Kala Bhavan as Dilip Kumar declared that the TVS was not a political party but a non political movement which will fight for the Telangana state.

Launching a strident attack on KCR, Dilip Kumar said that his wrong policies had weakened the movement. "With his policies and under his leadership, Telangana can not be achieved," he said.

"It is not possible for TRS alone to realise the dream for Telangana. It can be achieved only by working along with all other parties at the national level," Kumar also said.

"TRS and KCR are not in a position to achieve Telangana now. The policies pursued by him will never achieve Telangana", said Dilip Kumar, who had emerged the most stringent critic of KCR's leadership ever since the TRS suffered huge defeat in the recent elections.

Meanwhile, the TRS rebels received a new short in arm as KCR's close aide Habeeb Abdul Rahman also joined their ranks. Rahman, TRS general secretary and former MLC, said that the TRS had become one man show and a property of a single individual.

He alleged that KCR had sold the TRS tickets for crores of rupees to the individuals who had never worked for the party in the past.

"If KCR works only for the sake of the benefit of himself and his party, how can he achieve Telangana?," Rahman asked. Rahman said that many leaders and workers of the TRS were demanding KCR to quit as the party president.

"He held the TRS executive committee meeting with the help of two hundred rowdies and these rowdies had attacked former MP Ravindra Naik," he said.

Rahman has revolted at a time when the party is already in the grip of a big turmoil. The party suspended five top party office-bearers for demanding the resignation of KCR as party president.

KCR is already under fire for the physical attack on Ravindra Naik, a tribal leader at the party headquarters. Though he and his nephew Harish Rao have tendered an apology, it has not cut much ice.

Angry Naik has refused to withdraw the criminal case he filed against Chandrasekhara Rao at a local police station in Hyderabad.

Rao is also under attack for promoting his family interests by appointing his son K Taraka Rama Rao as the general secretary of the party. Both his son and nephew are party legislators.

Congress raises the issue of Telangana Bhavan's ownership

Meanwhile, a senior Congress leader and former minister J C Diwakar Reddy had raised the question of the ownership of the Telangana Bhavan, the sprawling headquarters of the party on prime land in the posh Banjara Hills area in Hyderabad.

Diwakar Reddy said that when the cabinet had decided to allot the land to the TRS to build the party office, he had suggested that a clause should be incorporated in the Government Order, under which the government can resume the land in case of a dispute within the party.

While J C Diwakar Reddy was confident that with the raging in-fighting in the TRS, the Telangana Bhavan should be surrendered to the government.

Another senior Congress legislator E Pratap Reddy said that the matter will go to the court because the rebels in the party have questioned the leadership of K Chandrasekhara Rao.

The TRS rebels have already threatened to forcibly occupy the building by removing Rao from leadership. Security was tightened at Telangana Bhavan after the threat.

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Mohammed Siddique in Hyderabad