Former Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy's daughter Y S Sharmila may join the Congress and merge her YSR Telangana Party with it soon, sources said here on Monday.
Sharmila, the sister of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy, is likely to be present at the Congress' mega rally near Hyderabad on September 17, they said. She had on Thursday met top Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi in the national capital.
When asked about it at a press conference at the AICC headquarters, Congress general secretary K C Vengopal said, "Sharmila ji met Congress parliamentary party chief Sonia Gandhi and (former AICC chief) Rahul Gandhi. It was a very cordial meeting, very good meeting that I think she herself explained to the media. Rest of the things you wait and see."
At the presser, Venugopal announced that on September 17 evening, which is celebrated as Telangana National Integration Day, the party will hold a "mega rally" near Hyderabad where it will announce five guarantees for Telangana, which is scheduled to go to polls later this year. The sources said Sharmila is likely to be present at the meeting and a merger of her party with the Congress could take place in the near future.They said she may join the Congress and merge her party which would come as a boost for the grand old party ahead of the Telangana Assembly polls.
Speculation about Sharmila growing closer to the Congress has been doing the rounds for quite some time after she had met Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister D K Shivakumar in Bengaluru in May to congratulate him on the party's victory in the neighbouring state. "Met Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi. Constructive discussions took place. The daughter of Y S Rajasekhara Reddy would relentlessly work towards benefiting Telangana people. I can say one thing, the countdown for KCR began (hinting at Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao's defeat in the upcoming Assembly polls)," Sharmila had told reporters after the meeting last week in New Delhi without elaborating further.
She vigorously campaigned for her sibling Jagan Mohan Reddy during the 2019 Assembly polls in Andhra Pradesh and later floated her own party YSRTP in Telangana.