KCR wants KTR to succeed, but unsure when

Change of guard will happen in the present term of the Assembly itself, says a senior Minister

TRS party working president, K. T. Rama Rao is all set to step into his father’s shoes, but interestingly his father and Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao himself is apparently not sure about the timing of that huge political decision.

"CM wants his son to succeed him, most probably in this term itself, but so far he has not revealed his plans to anyone," a party leader close to the Chief Minister told The Hindu, reacting to the strong rumours in the political circles of the imminent change in the State leadership now.

"I don’t think anyone has the gall to even ask KCR about these strong rumours," he said while admitting that a section of the party MLAs are strongly advocating KTR’s promotion. "Watching CM sir closely for a decade I can tell you he will not reveal the plans till the last minute," the leader said recalling how KTR was made party working president and Mr. Kadiyam Srihari Deputy Chief Minister surprising all.

What gave fire to the rumours was the sudden burst of opinions from senior Ministers saying there was nothing wrong if KTR was made CM. After Health Minister Eatala Rajender made some interesting comments on the elevation, a string of senior Ministers, including Errabelli Dayakar Rao and Talasani Srinivas Yadav and MLAs like A. Jeevan Reddy gave enough fodder to media men, both solicited and unsolicited.

Interestingly, KTR himself dismissed the earlier rumours with The Hindu correspondent, on the surge of CM demand earlier by the MLAs, smilingly saying ‘Perhaps, no one wants to be left behind.’ The rumours surfaced in several phases since the 2018 Assembly elections but this time they gained pace and credence for various factors. Several MLAs to whom this correspondent spoke, were confident that this time the news indeed was right. They have their own reasons including the way KTR has been handling the entire administration with KCR confining himself to the farm house for a large part of the last few months. Curiously, KTR had held a review meeting with Ministers and senior officials of major departments on a single day a few months ago.

All the senior officials including the Chief Secretary and the DGP too calling on KTR with New Year greetings gave scope for rumour mills to run full time. A second-time MLA from North Telangana also reasoned that KCR was deliberately keeping himself away sending a message to officials that KTR was the man to go to for discussions.

A senior Minister, on condition of the anonymity, said that the rumours of it happening by February-end may not come true given the Chief Minister’s strong belief in muhurtams. There are no good muhurtams till April. However, he was confident that the change would happen in this term itself.

Meanwhile, efforts to reach out to KTR for his reaction did not elicit any response.

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