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Eatala Rajender likely to be BJP’s next Telangana chief, says leader

Jun 11, 2024 09:04 AM IST

Eatala Rajender, the newly-elected MP from the Malkajgiri constituency, is likely to be appointed as the president of the BJP’s Telangana unit, a party leader familiar with the matter said.

Hyderabad: Eatala Rajender, the newly-elected MP from the Malkajgiri constituency, is likely to be appointed as the president of the BJP’s Telangana unit, a party leader familiar with the matter said.

Former Minister and BJP candidate from Malkajgiri, Eatala Rajender along with his family members show their ink-marked fingers after casting their vote during the fourth phase of the Lok Sabha polls. (ANI)

Rajender met senior BJP leaders and union home minister Amit Shah in New Delhi to present his case for the state chief post, in place of G Kishan Reddy, who was inducted to the union cabinet for a second successive term.

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A BJP leader in Telangana, who refused to be quoted, said that Rajender had lobbied for a berth in the union cabinet, but could not get the chance, as Prime Minister Narendra Modi had already decided to retain Kishan Reddy and take Bandi Sanjay in the cabinet. “There was no way the Modi could accommodate more than two out of eight BJP MPs in Telangana,” he said, adding that after failing to make it to the cabinet, Rajender asked for the BJP state president post.

He further said that BJP’s national leadership has tentatively decided to make an OBC leader as the state BJP president. “We proposed to make OBC as the chief minister if the BJP comes to power in Telangana. Since it did not happen, the party national leadership wants to hand over the party reins to an OBC leader,” the party leader said.

“Eatala has a fair chance, as he is a strong OBC leader with tremendous organising capabilities and his appointment would definitely help consolidate the OBC vote bank in the state. But he is a relatively new comer to the BJP, having defected from the BRS in which he had held key positions,” the BJP leader quoted above said.

But, the leader also said that the decision will only be made after the BJP chooses the party’s national president.

At present, there are two prominent OBC leaders in the state BJP who could be considered for the party chief post. One is Rajya Sabha member and BJP national OBC Morcha president Dr K Laxman and another is Eatala Rajender.

Laxman had held the BJP state chief post in the past between 2016 and 2020, but under his leadership, the party performed poorly in the 2018 assembly elections in Telangana, winning just one MLA seat in the 119-member assembly.

“On that count, Eatala has a fair chance, as he is a strong OBC leader with tremendous organising capabilities and his appointment would definitely help consolidate the OBC vote bank in the state. But he is a relatively new comer to the BJP, having defected from the Bharat Rashtra Samithi in which he had held key positions,” the BJP leader quoted above said.

“Moreover, he has no ideological background of the BJP. In fact, he has a Leftist background. It is not certain how he would take the BJP leaders and cadre along in the coming years, if he is made the state BJP chief,” he said.

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