Four Out Of Six Rajya Sabha Members Of TDP Resign From The Party To Join The Bharatiya Janata Party


New Delhi: Telugu Desam Party led by Chandrababu Naidu plunged into a major crisis on June 20 with four of its six Rajya Sabha members resigning from the party and joining the Bharatiya Janata Party. This has happened barely less than a month after facing a humiliating defeat in the Andhra Pradesh assembly elections.

The four MPs — Y S Chowdary alias Sujana Chowdary, T G Venkatesh, C M Ramesh and Garikapati Mohan Rao — met Rajya Sabha chairman M Venkaiah Naidu and submitted a letter requesting that they be recognized as a separate group in the Upper House and be allowed to merge with the BJP.

The four MPs had earlier in the day had a brief meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president and home minister Amit Shah and formally expressed their desire to join the party. Later, they also held deliberations with BJP working president J P Nadda, a TDP leader familiar with the development said.

While Chowdary, Venkatesh and Ramesh represent Andhra Pradesh, Mohan Rao is from Telangana. With the defection of four MPs, the TDP is left with only two MPs in Rajya Sabha – Kanakamedla Ravindra Kumar and Thota Seetharama Lakshmi.

The development comes as a rude shock to TDP president and former Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu, who is away in Europe on a vacation with his family. He is scheduled to return to Amaravati on June 26.

Venkatesh told reporters that the four MPs had taken the decision only after witnessing the people’s mandate for the BJP. “As far as I am concerned, I am joining the BJP for the development of Rayalaseema region. “I had been an active worker in ABVP during my college days and so, I am not new to BJP. I feel very comfortable in the party,” he said.

He denied the allegations that the MPs had ditched the TDP at a time when the party president was away in Europe. “We met Naidu a week ago and explained our situation. He requested us not to desert the TDP in this hour of crisis, but we told him we have our own compulsions,” he said.


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