Even as the Congress Legislature Party of the newly-elected MLAs is scheduled to meet on January 16 to elect its new leader, tension is palpable in the Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee.
Reason: there is a talk that at least half a dozen senior Congress MLAs are planning to jump the fence into the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi shortly.
So, the party is not sure how many MLAs would attend the CLP meet to elect the leader. If there are any absentees, it would mean they have defected to the TRS.
The talk is that the defections might take place before Sankrathi festival itself, to be held on January 15.
The names of the probable defectors that were doing rounds in the media circles are: former home minister Sabita Indra Reddy, Bhadrachalam MLA Podem Veeraiah, Palair MLA K Upender Reddy, Yellareddy MMLA Jajula Surender, Pinapaka MLA Rega Kantha Rao and LB Nagar MLA D Sudheer Reddy.
Among them, only Sudheer Reddy gave a clarification on Saturday that he would not be defecting to the TRS, but would stay back in the Congress. He accused the TRS leaders of playing a mind game.
Though the name of Manthani MLA D Sridhar Babu and Bhupalpalli MLA Gandra Venkatramana Reddy are also being heard in the media circles as probable defectors, they, too, have condemned the reports.
Apart from MLAs, several other senior Congress leaders might also shift their loyalties to the TRS for a bright future. They are apparently of the view that the Congress has failed to build up a strong leadership.