Revanth Reddy, the most dedicated karyakarta of the BJP, writes KTR

The Congress party has got its Lok Sabha arithmetic all wrong. There is something terribly amiss as far as Congress and the 2024 general elections are concerned. A deeper look into the party’s recent strategies and calculations make for a poor reflection of the grand old party’s self-trumpeted thrust on values and democratic principles where everyone is treated equally.

Apparently the days when the word of Gandhi scions was the unwritten law, one that every party man had to follow, are a distant past now. The Gandhi diktat holds no water these days, which is indicative of the erosion of moral standards or whatever the party stood for. It is now more individual-centric wherein certain leaders, with moneybags, among other such considerations, call the shots, one way or the other. They hold sway because they have mastered the art of manipulations and go beyond the Darwinian   ‘survival of the fittest’ philosophy; they symbolise and belong to the new ‘survival of the wiliest’ breed.

Till the other day anyone who defied the high command’s word would be blacklisted, suspended or expelled. Such daring was anathema. After all one could not go against the Gandhis and still survive in the party. Many stalwarts who rubbed ‘The’ family on the wrong side have paid a heavy penalty, while some street-smart leaders defected and survived, albeit in other parties or after floating their own shops like Sharad Pawar.     

Amid all these ups and downs, today we have a Congress leader, who has crossed the Gandhi ‘Lakshman Rekha’ but still remains the blue-eyed boy of the party’s high commands, nay Rahul Gandhi. And the more intriguing part is that though he is a notorious defector, his career graph, thanks to the ‘generosity’ of the high command, has been on the upswing despite possessing questionable credentials. Nor is he a staunch Congress man. Indeed one is talking of A. Revanth Reddy, the Chief Minister of Telangana State, an outsider in the Congress party for all practical purposes.

If one goes by the track-record of the gentleman in question, it becomes evident that he cannot be considered as a genuine Congress lieutenant under any scale of measurement. What is a noticeable change in his approach, unlike his earlier styles, is that he is silently, but effectively, planning his moves as would a chess Grand Master. And it is the Congress party that is to be checkmated.

It is clear that he was been gradually leaning towards the sworn enemy of the grand old party, the Bharatiya Janata party (BJP). He does not give a damn to this arch-rivals equation. It is quite bizarre that even as he is inching towards the BJP, the think tank of Congress, especially Rahul Gandhi, seems oblivious of his moves, which are sounding the party’s death-knell, so to say.

There is a contrast to the way Rahul Gandhi and Revanth Reddy are treating some issues, especially with regard to the minorities (read it as Muslims) and the elite band of Gautam Ambani and Mukesh Ambani and those of their ilk. Things took a dramatic turn on December 26, 2023, when Reddy met Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Almost as a double-quick follow-up, Karan Adani, son of the Adani Group Chairman Gautam Adani, landed in Hyderabad to meet Revanth Reddy. This rendezvous paid dividends to Reddy when Gautam Adani met the Chief Minister in Davos, exactly a week later, and announced an investment of Rs, 12,400 crore in Telangana.

My own reading, I am sure many would agree to this point of view, is that it was not the entry of Adaniinto the State but of Modi himself, albeit through the backdoor. After all, his prized catch was dangling a multi-crore bait before Reddy, who virtually pounced on the reward that came along.

And this is where one is baffled by the silence of Rahul Gandhi, who dubbed Adani a stooge of Modi and those supporting Adani formed the Prime Minister’s B-Team. How is it that he has not reacted adversely or otherwise, when Reddy rolled out the red carpet for Adani.

Apparently there is more to it than meets the eye. Revanth has been doing everything in his powers to malign the image of not only the BRS but even the Congress. There are ample indications that during the last Assembly elections, he put in his best efforts to help BJP candidates in around two dozen seats by fielding near-certain losers as Congress candidates. Of course, he did not reckon with the gusty spirit of BRS candidates and their popularity among the voters, who put paid to the lofty aspirations of BJP and Revanth Reddy.     

The BJP candidates may not have won to the expected levels but the rapport between Reddy and Modi grew stronger, which is precisely what Reddy was bargaining for. After all, the sweepstakes are high and with Modi’s blessings, the Chief Minister could enjoy a field day. It was a win-win for him, either which way.

I have substantial evidence that Revanth Reddy is trying to facilitate BJP wins in at least six seats in the ensuing Lok Sabha elections, slated for May 13. It is for this reason that he is fielding weak candidates in some segments like DanamNagender, who, like Revanth Reddy, is another turncoat. One will not be surprised if the Chief Minister will put official machinery at the disposal of the BJP camp during the elections.

Even as the Reddy-Modi nexus was getting cemented, there were voices in support of the ‘newfound siblings’. Has not Reddy openly acknowledged that Modi was like his elder brother!

Former Telangana unit chief of the BJP, Bandi Sanjay Kumar went to the extent of actually suggesting that a Congress-BJP combination could pulverize the BRS and wipe it out. This was nothing but taking things a bit too far and outright ridiculous for no power on earth can unseat the BRS from Telangana and its people, who are waiting to deliver a deadly blow to the selfish and greedy Revanth Reddy-BJP combination.

Meanwhile, while riding piggyback on the shoulders of BJP and the likes of Modi and Amit Shah won’t the issue of minorities’ crop up? And it did. Revanth Reddy’s approach to minorities, Muslims in particular, took a turn for the worse.

Keen on striking back at the community for having voted for the BRS, he launched a virulent attack against them. He did precious little when Muslims were subject to unprovoked barbaric attacks in Sangareddy, Nalgonda and Daulatabad. Revanth Reddy also has this dubious distinction of not having a single Muslim minister in the Cabinet, something unheard of since 1953.

This is in stark contrast to the people-friendly BRS government, which rewardedMahmood Ali with the Deputy Chief Minister and Home Minister posts. Muslims, much to the envy of Revanth Reddy and BJP, have always rallied behind BRS, which accorded priority to the community in all its welfare schemes.

Seeing all these brazenly obnoxious behind-the-scenes manipulations and some in the open, it will surprise no one in particular if Revanth Reddy moves over to the BJP camp along with the BRS defectors and some disgruntled Congress leaders, once the results of the Lok Sabha elections are declared!

As things stand, there are many, including me, who feel that the honourable A. Revanth Reddy has become a more dedicated karyakarta than those who were part of the Saffron Brigade for decades together. The million dollar question is why is Rahul Gandhi tight-lipped and why is he not belling the cat?

(Author is the Working President of Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) and a Member of Telangana Legislative Assembly)