Andhra Congress MPs unhappy with cabinet reshuffle

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

HYDERABAD - Congress party MPs in Andhra Pradesh Wednesday said they were unhappy over the “raw deal” meted out to the state in the union cabinet reshuffle.

Several MPs, especially from the Telangana region who were hopeful of cabinet berth this time, felt let down by the central leadership. A section of MPs plans to bring the “injustice” done to the state to the notice of the leadership.

The aspirants pointed out that despite the state contributing 33 Lok Sabha seats in the 2009 elections and thus playing a key role in the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) retaining power, it was not given adequate representation.

There is only one cabinet minister and four ministers of state from Andhra Pradesh. In the latest re-allocation of portfolios, the lone cabinet minister S. Jaipal Reddy has been given the key ministry of petroleum and natural gas. He was earlier holding the charge of urban development.

“Injustice has been done again to the state. We were hoping that two to three MPs will be accommodated and Scheduled Castes will be given proper representation,” said Manda Jagannatham, MP from Nagarkurnool in Telangana region.

He feels that the ongoing movement for separate statehood to Telangana might have been a reason for the party not inducting any MP from the region. “They may have thought this will put us under pressure from Telangana people to resign,” he said.

Andhra Pradesh MPs forum convenor Ponnam Prabhakar, who also hails from Telangana, said the leadership might have decided not to include anybody from the state for the fear of antagonizing one region by inducting MPs from the other.

Senior MPs from Andhra, which already has three ministers of state, were also aspiring for ministerial berths. They include Kishore Chandra Deo, a former minister of state, Kavuri Sambasiva Rao and Rayapati Sambasiva Rao.

Congress won 33 out of 42 Lok Sabha seats from Andhra Pradesh in the 2009 elections. The strength came down to 32 in November last year with the resignation of Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy.

Filed under: Politics

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