The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) on 31 March 2014 received a shot in the arm, when Guntur MP and senior Congress leader Rayapati Sambasiva Rao joined it along with his kin and followers in the presence of TDP president N Chandrababu Naidu in Hyderabad. TDP is likely to field Rayapati in Narasaraopet Lok Sabha constituency against YSRCP's candidate A Ayodhyarami Reddy.
Rayapati's son Mohan Saikrishna, former Guntur mayor and younger brother and former MLC Srinivas also joined TDP along with their large number of followers.
Two other popular Congress former ministers in Krishna district - Mandali Buddha Prasad and Pinnamaneni Venkateswara Rao are tipped to join TDP on Tuesday, say media reports.
In another major development, actor Balakrishna, son of TDP founder and legendery actor NT Rama Rao, announced his entry into active politics on 1 April 2014. Balakrishna stated that he will discuss with TDP chief to decide from where to contest in the ensuing elections. He is yet to decide whether to contest to Lok Sabha or the State Assembly and informed this to media after visiting the Simhadri Appanna, the deity of Simhachalam temple near Visakhapatnam in coastal Andhra Pradesh. The actor's latest film "Legend" is released and is said to be a major success.
Naidu-Balakrishna are close relatives too. Naidu is the son-in-law of late NTR and his son Nara Lokesh married Balakrishna's daughter Brahmani.
Balakrishna planned to enter active politics to fulfill the ideals of his late father NTR and emphasised that people from two to three constituencies were bringing pressure on him to contest in the forthcoming elections. However, he made it clear that he would not leave his acting career even if he joins active politics.
In Telangana, K Chandrasekhar Rao-led Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) received a setback on Monday, when its MP G Vivekananda, along with his brother G Vinod, joined back in Congress. Vivekananda praised Congress leadership for fulfilling the long-standing demand of Telangana state creation. The new state's formation has been decided to be on 2 June 2014.
Meanwhile, Congress high command is set to release its list of candidates on 4 and 5 April for Telangana and 6 and 7 April for Seemandhra region to contest in the Lok Sabha and the State Assembly election. The party spokesperson Digvijay Singh also stated that the party president Sonia Gandhi will address a public rally in Hyderabad on 16 April.