After successfully taking away the main Opposition party status from the Congress in the Telangana Legislative Council, the ruling TRS appears to have now shifted its focus to denying the main Opposition status to the party in the Assembly, too.
The TRS is trying to woo as many Congress MLAs as possible to accomplish its goal. The Congress has won 19 MLA seats in the recent Assembly elections, and needs at least 12 (10% of the strength of the House) to have main Opposition status. According to informed sources, TRS president and Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao has entrusted the responsibility of luring the rival party's MLAs to the TRS fold to the senior leaders of the party. These senior leaders are claming that as many as 12 MLAs of the Congress are in touch with them and are ready to cross the fence at any time. The inducements being offered to the Congress leaders include cabinet posts to senior MLAs and other attractive inducements to the others.
"According to the existing rules, an Opposition party is entitled to get the main Opposition status if it has 10% of the total strength of the House. This means that the Congress requires at least 12 MLAs to get the main Opposition status. It has 19 MLAs now. If 12 of its 19 MLAs cross the fence, it will not get the main Opposition status as it would have only seven MLAs," a ruling party leader said on condition of anonymity.
Meanwhile, the Congress has claimed that none of its MLAs would cross the fence and join the TRS.
filed in:Telangana, TRS, KCR, Telangana Congress, Opposition, Party Defections