Congress leader Purandeswari, the daughter of famous actor-politician NTR, says she wants to join the BJP, and will formally approach the party on Friday.
Till late last month, the 55-year-old was a union minister. She resigned in protest against the Congress’ decision to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh and carve out the region of Telangana as a new state.
Purandeswari, like other Congress leaders who faced-off with the party over its new mapping of the state, is not from Telangana, which for decades has complained of the exploitation of its resources by the two other regions referred to as Seemandhra.
The BJP supported the proposal for the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, allowing it to clear parliament. But the party said that it would lobby hard to ensure special economic packages for the non-Telangana regions that will remain in the edited state of Andhra Pradesh.
Purandeswari shares a fraught relationship with her brother-in-law, Chandrabau Naidu, who is chief of the regional Telugu Desam Party or TDP, which was founded by her father, NTR. There are reports that Mr Naidu will ally with the BJP for the election.
That could help Purandeswari. She belongs to the Kamma caste, which is a strong supporter of the TDP. She has for years represented Visakhapatnam in Parliament, and hopes to contest the national election from the same constituency.
She said that in Delhi tomorrow, she will meet with senior BJP leaders like Rajnath Singh and LK Advani to offer her unconditional support.