Two-time former Andhra chief minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy’s widow and son, who now lead the formidable YSR Congress, stepped down from their legislative posts on Saturday to protest the Union government’s bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh.
YS Jaganmohan Reddy is a member of Parliament from Kadapa while his mother, YS Vijayamma, is an MLA from Pulivendula. Jaganmohan founded the YSR Congress Party which is presently being run by his mother due to his imprisonment over a number of disproportionate assets cases.
All of the party's 16 MLAs had resigned on June 25 - before the Congress's June 30 decision to split the state – over the issue. In the preceding weeks, a number of YSRC’s Telangana leaders quit over the party’s united Andhra stance.
With Jaganmohan and Vijayamma’s resignations, the YSRC has emerged as the first major political force in the state to have taken a strong stand on the split.
Their resignations come at a time when the Congress leaders, including the CM, accused parties like theirs and the TDP of playing a double game by not coming clear on the bifurcation issue.
Current Andhra chief minister Kiran Reddy had a couple of days ago accused the late YSR of having sown the seeds of Andhra’s split.
In a seven page open letter, the MP and MLA said that the Congress had further complicated the statehood issue. “We have been advocating time and again that the Centre should first spell out its stand and the proposal should be put forth for discussion before all stakeholders and political parties so that a consensus is reached.”
Pointing to the AK Antony Committee, it accused the Congress of making the bifurcation its own private affair.
TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu, who is also facing the heat of his MLAs and the common public, wrote a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday asking him to intervene in the bifurcation issue. He also accused the Congress party of unilaterally making the division.
Meanwhile, protests against the separation entered the 12th day on Saturday in the Seemandhra region.