New Congress in-charge for T’gana faces daunting task in election year

The Congress remains a divided house in Telangana with a section of senior leaders recently raising a banner of revolt against Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) president A. Revanth Reddy.

Hyderabad: Manikrao Thakare, the new in-charge appointed by the All India Congress Committee (AICC) for Telangana, faces a daunting task in setting the house in order and gearing up the organisation for the Assembly elections scheduled to be held later this year.

The Congress remains a divided house in Telangana with a section of senior leaders recently raising a banner of revolt against Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) president A. Revanth Reddy.

Political analysts say Thakare will face a huge challenge in carrying different groups together and ensure that the party comes to power in the state which was carved out of Andhra Pradesh by Congress-led government in 2014

The AICC on Wednesday appointed Thakare, a senior leader from Maharashtra replacing Manickam Tagore, amid infighting in the party’s state unit.

AICC president Mallikarjun Kharge made Tagore incharge for Goa.

“Appreciating their services, the party relieves Shri Manickam Tagore as AICC in-charge of Telangana and Shri Dinesh Gandhi as AICC in-charge of Goa,” the party said in a statement released on Wednesday night.

Tagore, an MP, took to Twitter to thank Kharge for the new responsibility. He said he would do his best to build a better organsiation from the booth level.

“Thank the 43,00,000 Congress members of Telangana Congress for their love and affection,” he wrote

He also expressed his best wishes to Thakare for the new responsibility.

“Hope he will help fulfill the mission of winning majority seats in Telangana in the 2023 Assembly elections and forming the first Congress Government. My best wishes to him.”

Meanwhile, Thakare also thanked Kharge, Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi for showing trust in him and giving him the responsibility of AICC in-charge of Telangana. He said he would try his best to accomplish his duty.

Tagore, who was made AICC in-charge for Telangana in 2020, has been shunted out by the high command after a section of senior leaders complained to the high command that he has been supporting Revanth Reddy and taking unilateral decisions.

A section of senior leaders had last month slammed Revanth Reddy for packing the party panels with his loyalists.

They had also announced to save Congress in Telangana movement, terming it a fight between what they called real Congress and the leaders who came from other parties. This was an open attack on Revanth Reddy and others who quit Telugu Desam Party (TDP) to join Congress a few years ago.

A day after senior leaders raised the banner of revolt, 13 loyalists of Revanth Reddy had announced resignations from party posts.

The crisis had forced the high command to send senior leader Dignvijay Singh to Hyderabad. He individually met the leaders from both the groups and based on the feedback received submitted a report to the high command.

It is believed that based on this report Kharge replaced Tagore with Thakarey.

The development cams hours after Revanth Reddy that he will abide by any decision of the high command to set right things in the party’s state unit.

Addressing the training programme of TPCC, he had stated that if the high command appoints another Aleader as TPCC president, he would carry him on his shoulders.

Revanth Reddy, also an MP, said he would work for the party without any post and claimed that he always worked with discipline irrespective of the party he was associated with.

Revanth Reddy stated that no matter which party he was associated with, he always fought against Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao.

Though Congress claims credit for creation of Telangana state, the party has not benefited from it politically as Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), which has now become Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) won two terms in power.

In 2014, Congress had won 21 seats in 119-member Telangana Assembly. Defection of several leaders including MLAs to TRS further weakened the party.

The grand old party’s tally slipped further to 18 in 2018 elections despite alliance with the TDP and the Left parties. It suffered a huge setback a few months after the elections as a dozen MLAs switched loyalties to TRS.

Political observers say with the BJP winning two Assembly by-elections and projecting as the only alternative to TRS, the Congress party will face a huge challenge in 2023 polls.


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