Keshava Rao to Quit BRS, Rejoin Congress

Hyderabad: The opposition BRS, which in the past few weeks witnessed a string of desertions by its leaders, on Thursday received another jolt, a severe one at that, with the No. 3 in the party, BRS secretary general K. Keshava Rao, declaring that he was leaving the BRS and will be joining the Congress soon.

Setting to rest the day-long speculation about his plans, Keshava Rao, who called on BRS president K. Chandrashekar Rao at the latter’s farmhouse in Erravalli village earlier in the day, said in an informal chat with reporters at his residence that he informed the BRS chief of his decision.

He, and his daughter Gadwal Vijayalakshmi, who is also currently in the BRS, and is also the mayor of Hyderabad, are expected to join the Congress on March 30 in the presence of the Chief Minister and TPCC president A. Revanth Reddy.

Keshava Rao, however, made it clear that his decision to quit the BRS had nothing to do with any differences with the party but his desire to return to the Congress, where he began his political career decades ago, saying Chandrashekar Rao gave him a lot of respect and that he has great respect for the BRS president.

Accompanying Keshava Rao to meet Chandrashekar Rao were former minister A. Indrakaran Reddy and another BRS leader D. Ravinder Reddy, who too are now said to be ready to quit the BRS and join the Congress.

Keshava Rao, and his daughter and Hyderabad mayor, Gadwal Vijayalakshmi, were invited to join the Congress by an AICC observer for the state Deepa Das Munshi last week, and ever since, there has been speculation that they were all set to join the Congress.

Before joining the BRS in 2013, Keshava Rao had a long stint in the Congress, serving as a minister in the party government in unified Andhra Pradesh, and is currently a member of the Rajya Sabha. This is his second term in the upper house of Parliament as a BRS member. He first entered the Rajya Sabha in 2006 as a Congress member, and then again in 2013, and 2020 as a BRS member.

The revelation by Keshava Rao of his plans is learnt to have been not taken too kindly by Chandrashekar Rao, who is believed to have expressed his severe displeasure and recalled how the party had always honoured him and his family with respect, and positions.

Meanwhile, Keshava Rao’s son K. Viplav Kumar, who is in the BRS, issued a statement distancing himself from the decisions of his father and sister and declared that he would continue in the BRS.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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