File photo of Senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge. (Photo: PTI)
HYDERABAD: A day after CLP leader Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka openly backed the candidature of Mallikarjun Kharge as the next AICC chief, TPCC president A. Revanth Reddy while referring to him as "Telangana bidda" endorsed the choice.
While pointing out Kharge’s background, Reddy cited his family’s sacrifices while fighting against Nizam’s rule in the erstwhile Hyderabad State. He felt that open support from party men should be seen as a "positive sign".
"I don’t have a difference of opinion on that count but since I am the PCC president I have to remain neutral. When P.V. Narasimha Rao was contesting in Nandyal Lok Sabha by-elections, the TD did not field its candidate. Since there was a chance for a Telugu to become the prime minister, NTR decided not to field anyone against Rao," he recalled at a press meet here on Monday.
Former PCC president V. Hanumantha Rao also backed Kharge citing his seniority and experience. Questioning the idea of open debate by Shashi Tharoor, Rao felt that this kind of practice may be worthwhile in Western countries but in India this should be decided in a democratic manner.
"If Kharge leads the party, it will surely have a better future. If at all Tharoor wishes to prove himself he should win these elections, rather than ask for debates," he told DC.
While demanding Tharoor to withdraw his candidature former Union minister, Dr Chinta Mohan predicted that Kharge will be the next party president.
"A millionaire backed by corporate houses, Tharoor seeking support is unfair. He should welcome Kharge and ensure that the party will have a dalit as its president in over 50 years," he said.
Earlier on Sunday, Bhatti alleged the BJP was spoiling the prospects of Kharge by showing him as a man representing a particular caste, after it had sensed about his possible elevation as the AICC president. "There is a vicious campaign against the leader who has vast experience as a politician. We welcome his candidature," he said.