'I'm not speaking for your TRP': Vangaveeti Radha loses cool, threatens journalists

Radha, who had quit the YSRCP earlier this week, also accused Jaganmohan Reddy of ‘insulting’ him and his late father.
'I'm not speaking for your TRP': Vangaveeti Radha loses cool, threatens journalists
'I'm not speaking for your TRP': Vangaveeti Radha loses cool, threatens journalists
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Senior leader Vangaveeti Radha, the son of late Kapu leader and Congress MLA Vangaveeti Mohana Ranga on Thursday, lashed out at reporters during a press meet in Vijayawada for asking questions about his future course of action.

Radha had called the press meet to hit out at Jaganmohan Reddy and accused the YSRCP chief of ‘insulting’ him and his late father. Radha had quit the YSRCP earlier this week, upset that the Vijayawada Central ticket was likely to go to Malladi Vishnu. Speculation is rife that he might join the TDP soon. 

When one reporter from MOJO TV asked him a question, Radha threatened him and accused him of being a ‘TDP member’.

“You can be from any TV channel but listen,” he said, raising his voice and intimidating the journalist, “I am not speaking for your TRP.”

Watch the video below:

Radha also got into a tiff with journalists a second time within a few minutes, when a reporter asked if his potential entry into TDP would consolidate the Kapu vote bank.

“Are all these people standing behind me, Kapus?” Radha asked in response. When one journalist pointed out that he was threatening them for doing their jobs, other reporters soon joined the chorus.

“There is no need for me to threaten you. I’m saying that Ranga has supporters in all castes and communities,” he said in response, after shouting at the top of his voice.

Meanwhile, Vangaveeti claimed that his political aspirations could not be fulfilled in the YSRCP even though he had informed Jagan about his father's dream when he joined the party and lashed out at the YSRCP chief. 

"I have faced many difficulties and even insults within the party as some even indulged in character assassination. I bore it all, because I wanted to fulfil my father's wishes, but it was of no avail," Vangaveeti told reporters.

“I was not upset at being denied a seat but they insulted not only me, but my father as well,” he claimed.

He also expressed his angst at the flak he was receiving online from several social media users for his decision, with people asking how he could join the party that allegedly killed his father. He also said that the YSRCP was behind the malicious campaign.

“Those who respect my father are present in all parties. They will continue to be there as well. I am not looking for a seat or hungry for power,” he said.

The press meet came a day after Telugu Desam party (TDP) President and Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu invited Vangaveeti to join the party by sending a delegation led by MLC T D Janardhan. The TDP is said to have promised him a ‘suitable’ post.

The YSRCP has asked Vangaveeti to either contest from Vijayawada East constituency or the Machilipatnam Lok Sabha seat, even though he insisted that he wanted the Vijayawada Central ticket, which has been the bastion of his family.

While Vangaveeti has maintained ambiguity about joining the TDP, sources say that they have already extended the invite and there is a high possibility that he would join the party in the presence of Naidu.

Vangaveeti Radha had won as an MLA in 2004 from Vijayawada Central on a Congress ticket. In 2009, he contested on a Praja Rajyam Party (PRP) ticket but lost, before moving to Jagan's YSRCP in 2014, only to lose again. 

Vangaveeti’s father, Vangaveeti Ranga was a former MLA, who made his way up through gang rivalries and faction wars in the 1970s in Vijayawada, before he joined politics and became a Kapu leader in the 80s. In the early hours of December 25, 1988, he was assassinated by members of a rival group in public as he sat on an indefinite fast in Vijayawada. The violence that Vangaveeti Ranga’s murder triggered claimed over 40 lives in the city. 

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