In what can come as a huge blow to Congress, BJP is in touch with Tollywood megastar and Rajya Sabha MP Chiranjeevi and is trying to rope in the Cong leader in its party, sources told.
The actor joined the Congress in 2011 after the merger of his 30-month old Praja Rajyam party with the former. He later went on to become a Rajya Sabha member from Andhra Pradesh.
After more than one year of merging his party into Congress, he was nominated to Rajya Sabha on 29 March 2012. He got elected and took the oath as a Rajya Sabha member on 3 April 2012. Later, on 28 October 2012, he was sworn in as the Union Minister of State (Independent charge), Ministry of Tourism.
Chiranjeevi, who belongs to the Kapu community, enjoys a large fan following and is very popular among his community.
This development has come in the aftermath of lawmakers from Chandrababu Naidu-led Telugu Desam Party (TDP) joining in BJP party in large numbers, leaving the former Andhra Pradesh CM in a fix. BJP is trying to rope in big names in the state in order to set it's sight firmly on 2024 as it appears that party's preparations for the next Assembly polls have begun quite early.
The Congress party had last won the elections in united Andhra Pradesh in 2009 under the leadership of former chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, following which YSRCP split from the Congress after the latter supported the Centre's actions of splitting the state into two - AP and Telangana.
In the 2019 Assembly polls, the Congress managed to poll an aggregate of 3,68,878 votes across 175 constituencies a mere 1.17 per cent of the gross 3.13 crore-odd votes cast at the hands of Jagan's YSRCP.