Munugode byelection: TRS dissidents oppose Prabhakar Reddy’s name

Candidate not finalized yet, assures KCR

Hyderabad: Dissidence has surfaced within the TRS ahead of its bid to select a candidate for the Munugode byelection, forcing party president and Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao to intervene on Wednesday to set things right. He convened a meeting with dissident leaders at Pragathi Bhavan in order to stem the rot.

Earlier in the day, several TRS local leaders held a meeting in Nalgonda district demanding that the leadership not give the ticket to K. Prabhakar Reddy who had lost to K. Rajgopal Reddy in 2018. They said they would not support his candidature.

Energy minister G. Jagadish Reddy, who is also incharge minister for Nalgonda district, convened a meeting with them but failed to persuade them to agree for Prabhakar Reddy’s nomination. Subsequently, the minister and dissident leaders proceeded to Pragathi Bhavan to take the issue to Rao’s notice. The Chief Minister advised them not to act in haste. He asked party leaders not to take party issues to the public.

Rao reportedly made it clear that no final decision was taken on the candidate and the party would take local issues into consideration prior to that.

Apparently, dissidence surfaced after 'leaks' emerged in party circles that Rao had firmed up Prabhakar Reddy’s name based on surveys commissioned by the party through I-PAC teams and independent agencies. These 'leaks' suggested that all surveys favoured Prabhakar Reddy as he was involved in the statehood movement and had remained loyal to TRS and its president.

However, this was strongly disputed by dissident leaders who argued that he had lost people's confidence in Munugode as he was inaccessible to the people when he was their MLA. They asserted that TRS would lose the byelection if Prabhakar Reddy is fielded as the party nominee.

Speaking to the media after meeting the CM, Jagadish Reddy dismissed reports of any dissidence and said they had gone to Pragathi Bhavan to discuss strategy. "We unanimously resolved to work unitedly to ensure victory. Reports of dissidence are a creation by some vested interests,” he said.

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