With one minister after the other of his Cabinet facing serious allegations of corruption not only from opposition parties but also from senior Congress leaders, Chief Minister K Rosaiah on Fridayday asked his Cabinet colleagues to "effectively and collectively" counter them and ensure that the government’s image was not tarnished.
The issue came up for serious discussion at the State Cabinet meeting, chaired by Rosaiah in Hyderabad on Friday wherein Rural Development Minister Vatti Vasantha Kumar raised the issue of charges being levelled against Major Irrigation Minister Ponnala Lakshmaiah by senior Congress leaders like former MLC Palvai Govardhan Reddy and Nalgonda MP Gutta Sukhender Reddy.
Vatti strongly condemned the allegations and wanted the so-called senior Congress leaders reigned in. "It is unbecoming of these old people to level serious allegations against a Cabinet minister," Vatti reportedly said.
Health Minister Danam Nagender reportedly pointed out that Lakshmaiah was being targeted only because he was a backward class leader. However, other ministers like Komatireddy Venkata Reddy objected to Danam’s remark and said caste had nothing to do with the allegations.
Rosaiah then asked his colleagues to collectively and effectively counter such allegations against any minister. "We all have to defend our colleagues. It is our collective responsibility," Information Minister J Geeta Reddy, who briefed reporters about the Cabinet decisions, quoted Rosaiah as saying.