In push for south, BJP picks 4 for Rajya Sabha

HYDERABAD: The Bharatiya Janata Party on Wednesday nominated four persons, all from southern states, to the Rajya Sabha, the upper House of the Parliament, as the party pushes hard to make inroads into South India under its ‘Mission South’.

From Telangana, the BJP nominated K.V. Vijayendra Prasad, a movie writer who penned the stories for the super-hit Bahubali duology. He is the father of movie director Rajamouli, who directed both the parts.

Another well-known film personality, music director Ilaiyaraaja, was nominated from Tamil Nadu, while former international athlete P.T. Usha was nominated from Kerala. Veerendra Heggade, known for his philanthropic work, was nominated from Karnataka.

It was only recently that Dr K. Laxman, a senior BJP leader from TS was nominated to the RS from UP. With Prasad’s nomination, the Telugu states now have three MPs in the RS, including G.V.L. Narasimha Rao from AP.

Meanwhile, Modi wrote on Twitter: “Shri V. Vijayendra Prasad Garu is associated with the creative world for decades. His works showcase Ind-ia’s glorious culture and have made a mark globally.

Congratulations to him for being nominated to the Rajya Sabha (sic).”
Prasad said he was “humbled by the nomination.” Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, he thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind. “I am overwhelmed with this great honour, something that I never expected. It’s a great honour and also a responsibility,” the 80-year-old said.

The BJP, as recently as this week at its national executive meeting in the city on July 2 and 3, made it clear that it was going to go big in South India.

Union home minister Amit Shah, who moved the party’s political resolution on July 3 —passed unanimously at the national executive — said that South India is the BJP’s next region for its expansion breakthrough. Shah said that this big push into the south will start from Telangana.

Recently, Dr Laxman said that after Karnataka, the next target for the BJP was Telangana.

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma told reporters, during a briefing on the political resolution, that the entire gathering believed that the BJP is going to have a breakthrough in the south.

According to Sarma, Karnataka Chief Minister Basvaraj Bommai had mentioned a rise in fundamentalist organisations in the south and how the Congress was trying to create differences in the society.

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