Vacant cabinet berth reserved for Vangaveeti?

Telugu Desam Party president N. Chandrababu Naidu was sworn in as Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister on June 12, along with all the cabinet ministers, including three from the Jana Sena Party and one from the Bharatiya Janata Party.

Out of the 26 cabinet berths, Naidu filled 25, leaving one position vacant, which has sparked curiosity among political observers and party leaders alike.

Recent reports indicate that Naidu has left the berth vacant to accommodate prominent Kapu leader and former MLA from Vijayawada (East) Vangaveeti Radhakrishna, son of the late Vangaveeti Mohana Ranga.

Vangaveeti has been loyal to the TDP since 2019 when he joined the party after quitting the YSR Congress Party. Readmore!

Despite maintaining good relations with YSRCP leaders like Kodali Nani and Vallabhaneni Vamsi, he never attempted to rejoin the YSRCP.

In the 2019 elections, Vangaveeti did not receive a TDP ticket due to his last-minute defection but showed no signs of disgruntlement.

In the 2024 elections, the TDP chief again could not offer him a party ticket due to alliance pressures and caste considerations.

However, Naidu promised Vangaveeti that he would be fairly compensated, and the Kapu leader has patiently waited, keeping faith in Naidu.

During the elections, Vangaveeti participated in campaigning for the TDP in Kapu-dominated areas.

According to sources, soon after becoming Chief Minister again, Naidu conveyed to Vangaveeti that he would soon be inducted into the cabinet by making him a member of the state legislative council.

On Tuesday, the Election Commission announced a by-election for two MLC seats under the MLAs’ quota on July 12.

These vacancies arose due to the disqualification of two sitting MLCs—C. Ramachandraiah and Md Iqbal—who defected from the YSRCP to the TDP before the recent elections. Their terms were supposed to end on March 29, 2027.

The nomination process will begin on June 25, with nominations accepted until July 2, and scrutiny conducted on July 3. Since the TDP has a significant majority in the assembly, both MLCs could be elected without contest.

It is likely that the TDP will offer the MLC ticket to Vangaveeti, and once elected, he will be appointed to the cabinet in the existing vacancy, sources said.

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