The demand for making Kadappa MP Y S Jaganmohan Reddy the state chief minister in place of his late father Y S Rajasekhara Reddy took an ugly turn with his supporters in the name of Jagan Yuva Sena allegedly tearing down a huge banner carrying the pictures of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and former minister Renuka Choudhary in the Khammam district Congress committee office.
Though the incident occurred two days ago, when supporters of Jagan disrupted the teleconference by PCC president D Srinivas on the party membership enrolment drive, it came to light only today when a television channel aired the footage.
This has angered the Congress veterans and proclaimed that Jagan could not become chief minister through such atrocious acts.
"Sonia Gandhi is our supreme leader. We are all ordinary workers and either Y S Rajasekhara Reddy or Jaganmohan Reddy are no exception. In fact, Rajasekhara Reddy grew to such stature only with the blessings of Soniaji," Congress Central Working Committee member G Venkata Swamy asserted.
He strongly denounced the mindless act and wanted the PCC chief to immediately throw out such unruly elements from the party. Rajya Sabha member V Hanumantha Rao spit fire on the followers of Jagan, saying that "their act of tearing down the picture of our be loved leader Sonia Gandhi was highly outrageous".
He expressed anguish that the Khammam DCC leadership failed to initiate action against persons responsible even after 48 hours of the incident.
"As a mark of protest, I shall observe silence for 48 hours as a true disciple of Sonia Gandhi," Rao said.
Another CWC member K Keshava Rao said the Congress party was supreme and individuals were just a small part of it. Acts like tearing down the pictures of Soniaji are totally intolerable. The guilty have to be sternly dealt with,he said.
Home Minister P Sabita Indra Reddy, meanwhile, directed the Khammam police to register a case into the incident and bring the guilty to book.
Government chief whip Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka, who represents Khammam district, met PCC president D Srinivas here today to explain about the incident. Labour Minister R Venkata Reddy, who hails from the district, said he was present with the PCC president in Hyderabad when the incident took place two days ago.