Hyderabad: The Telangana Congress Party is facing a crisis of sorts following the defection of six of its MLAs. The party's strength in the Assembly has shrunk from 19 to 13 and two more are in the offing.
Despite the defections, the Congress managed to get a list of eight candidates ready, with Revanth Reddy's name as the Malkajgiri contestant.
The surprising fact was that Khammam Lok Sabha Seat was not mentioned. A coveted seat and Congress stronghold, there were many aspirants , including heavyweights like V. Hanumantha Rao, Renuka Chowdhary, industrialist V. Rajendra Prasad and Vaddiraju Ravichandra who had lobbied for Khammam seat.
Meanwhile, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) party led by its chief K. Chandrasekhara Rao (KCR) is determined to break the stronghold.
The current Khammam MP Ponguleti Srinivasa Reddy who won the seat moved to the TRS in 2016 is a strong contender.
It is being said that TDP's senior leader and politburo member Nama Nageswara Rao who won the seat in 2009 is likely to be fielded from Khammam.
It is highly probable that he might contest on a Congress ticket, because rumours are being set afloat that he is getting feelers from the Congress Party.
If he moves to the Congress and contests on the grand old party's ticket, the understanding between the party and TDP would become evident.
In the recent 2018 general elections, Nama Nageswara Rao had contested from Khammam Assembly but lost to TRS candidate, Puvvada Ajay Kumar.
Vaddiraju Ravichandra , who had contested from the Warangal Assembly segment as a Congress candidate and lost, is also trying extremely hard to get a nomination for the Khammam LS seat.
But the news is that he had also met TRS leaders through Sattupalli MLA Sandra Venkata Veeraiah, who defected to the ruling TRS party.
Former Union minister Renuka Chowdary, who is set to retire as the Congress’ Rajya Sabha member on April 2, is also preparing to contest from the Khammam Lok Sabha constituency this time.
A very strong contender it is said that she is pulling all strings in Delhi Party office for her nomination and had also spoken about her intention to contest from Khammam. Renuka Chowdary was elected twice from Khammam, in 1999 and 2004.