Etala, Rajgopal likely to leave BJP, Nadda reaches out again
HYDERABAD: The crisis in the Telangana BJP with two of its senior leaders, Etala Rajendar and Komatireddy Rajgopal Reddy, being unhappy, is deepening with each passing day. The duo has received calls from party president J.P. Nadda twice in the last four days to visit Delhi for a meeting with him and Union home minister Amit Shah to sort out differences with the state party leadership.
Sources close to Rajgopal Reddy and Rajendar told Deccan Chronicle that they were upset enough to have not agreed to a meeting with Nadda and Shah on June 21, the day they first got calls from the BJP president.
“They believe that the very purpose of them joining the BJP – that of defeating KCR – is appearing more and more remote as the state leadership is acting in a rudderless manner,” the sources said.
They said these two leaders saw themselves as “fighters” and were certain that the BJP could not provide the platform for a fight they want to get into.
While Rajgopal Reddy and Rajendar’s future course and the timing is in the realm of some speculation, it is more certain that they no longer want to continue in the BJP, the sources said, adding that they could be looking at the Congress as their political home.
Both Rajgopal Reddy and Rajendar received calls again from Nadda on Friday for a meeting in Delhi on Saturday and sources said that they were yet to decide on whether they should go or not. Both efforts by Nadda were reportedly a result of state BJP president Bandi Sanjay Kumar asking him to step in.
Sources said that Rajendar and Rajgopal Reddy were deeply hurt at being neglected by the state party leadership and “completely sidelined.” They were never effectively pressed into service even as the national party leaders, fully aware of the situation, had not done anything “for such a long time.”
According to the sources, Rajgopal Reddy is believed to have made up his mind that there was no point in continuing in the BJP, especially after the party went silent following the ED questioning BRS MLC K. Kavitha in the Delhi liquor scam. “This has created an impression that the BJP has come to some sort of an understanding with the BRS. Rajgopal Reddy sees himself as a fighter and sees no prospects of the BJP mounting any effective fight in the state against the BRS,” sources close to him said.
Similarly, Rajendar is learnt to have decided that it might be time for him to reconsider his options to bring the KCR government down and join forces with someone who could manage to do so. “He will continue in the BJP, at least for now,” another source close to Rajendar said.