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Why Was Ponnala Removed So Suddenly?

Why Was Ponnala Removed So Suddenly?

The sacking of former minister Ponnala Lakshmaiah from the post of Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee president was not a shock or surprise to anybody in the party, but the timing was really surprising.

According to party sources here, AICC president Sonia Gandhi had signed the orders appointing N Uttam Kumar Reddy in place of Ponnala as TPCC chief last week itself and Ponnala had been camping in Delhi for the past five days and making efforts to convince Sonia to drop the proposal.

He could not, however, meet the Congress President. Apparently, the decision was taken by Rahul Gandhi before going on a long leave, as part of restructuring of the entire party. Rahul is likely to replace Sonia in April as AICC chief.

Speculation was rife in the party's rank and file over the removal of Ponnala following the visit of  AICC General Secretary and  party in-charge Digvijay Singh in January this year.

Senior leaders complained to the  AICC functionaries about the ‘failure’ of Ponnala in  the last  general elections, as well as controlling the defections from  the party to the  ruling TRS in the state.

They also reportedly informed the High Command that Ponnala failed to inspire the cadres and was unable to move critically on the TRS government on various issues. There was unhappiness among the cadre due to  inefficient leadership, said a senior party leader.

Party sources at Delhi also indicated that the present CLP Secretary and former Minister  Mallu  Bhatti Vikramarka, a Dalit, would be appointed as Working President of the TPCC, in place of Uttam Kumar Reddy.

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Tags: Ponnala Lakshmaiah TPCC TRS Uttam Kumar Reddy