Hyderabad: TRS MLC Gutha Sukhender Reddy assumed charge as the Chairman of State Legislative Council on Wednesday. He was elected unopposed with his nomination being the only one received for the post.
Shortly after the Council meeting commenced on Wednesday, Deputy Chairman Nethi Vidyasagar announced Reddy’s unanimous election. Later, he was accompanied by Ministers and members from all political parties in the Council as he walked to the podium to take charge.
Members of Legislative Council extended wishes to Reddy on his election and vowed to run the House without any bias and encourage healthy discussions.
Speaking on the occasion, Finance Minister T Harish Rao recalled his long association with Reddy since the latter worked with Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao in TDP and later on, during separate Statehood movement.
He said Reddy was not only a tall person physically but had a strong stature and was confident that he would bring laurels to the chair. He said one cannot forget humble beginnings of Reddy as a ward member who went on to serve three terms as a Parliament member, before becoming the Council Chairman. He said due to efforts of Reddy, the Alimineti Madhava Reddy project was completed.
Municipal Administration and Urban Development Minister K T Rama Rao said despite working in Congress, Reddy extended support to agitators from other political parties. He said Reddy had been a strong advocate of separate Telangana State and contributed his might as an MP in the formation of separate State.
He said that Assembly Speaker Pocharam Srinivas Reddy and the Council Chairman were both farmers and passionate about agriculture, which augurs well for farmers in the State.
Opposition leaders – Congress MLC T Jeevan Reddy, BJP MLC N Ramachander Rao, AIMIM MLC Syed Amin Jafri and others, urged the Chairman to spare adequate time to the Opposition and encourage healthy discussions.
Deputy Chairman Nethi Vidyasagar, Home Minister Mohd Mahmood Ali, Ministers V Prashanth Reddy, G Jagadish Reddy, Talasani Srinivas Yadav, Satyavathi Rathod, V Srinivas Goud, former Ministers Nayini Narasimha Reddy and Kadiam Srihari, Government Chief Whip Bodekunti Venkateshwarlu and others also spoke on the occasion.
They recalled the four-decades of political career by the Chairman, terming it as an inspiration for many young politicians and hoped that he would continue to serve people in his new role.
Reddy thanked TRS president and Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao for giving him the opportunity to head the Council. He vowed to uphold the dignity and integrity of the post by encouraging healthy and progressive discussions in the House. He thanked all the legislators for electing him unanimously and sought their cooperation to run the Council smoothly.
Long career in public service
Three-time MP Gutha Sukhender Reddy who took charge as Chairman of the State Legislative Council on Wednesday, had an illustrous and four decade-long career in public service.
He donned the roles of a student leader, a farmers leader and also an agitator for separate Telangana State, besides proving himself as an able public representative who always stood for people.
Born into an agricultural family in Urumadla village of Chityal mandal in Nalgonda district, Reddy started his political career as the general secretary of student body of Nanakram Bhagavandas Science College in Hyderabad during 1971-72. He was later elected as ward member of Urumadla Gram Panchayat in 1981. Over the next 15 years, he held various posts including Chairman of Agricultural Market Committee, Single Window, and ZPTC.
He shot to fame through his active participation in dairy development. He headed Nalgonda and Rangareddy Milk Producers Cooperative Union and served as Chairman of Andhra Pradesh Dairy Development Cooperative Federation as well as Director of National Dairy Development Board of India. He was elected as Lok Sabha member from Nalgonda for three terms between 1999 and 2019.
After the State formation, Reddy joined TRS and was appointed as Chairman of Telangana Rashtra Rythu Samanvaya Samithi, before he was elected to the Legislative Council recently.
Legislators laugh their hearts out
The first day of the State Legislative Council Chairman Gutha Sukhender Reddy turned out to be an occasion for friendly banter with Legislators cracking jokes against each other, leaving the remaining members in splits.
Soon after Reddy entered the House for the first time, many MLCs walked upto him to congratulate him in advance on his election as Chairman on the first day in the Council. He sat next to former Deputy Chief Minister Kadiam Srihari with whom he shares decades of friendship as contemporaries in politics. The duo were seen cracking jokes and laughing their hearts out.
As Reddy was led to the chair by Ministers and Opposition leaders, several MLCs lined up to greet the new Chairman and pose for photographs. Guiding his friend on the first day at work, Srihari insisted that Reddy must sit in the chair first and advised the members to meet him in his chambers.
When Finance Minister T Harish Rao praised Reddy as a tall man in politics, Srihari left all members in splits stating that one tall man was praising another. In a friendly banter, Srihari kept commenting as other members spoke about Reddy and his illustrious political career.
Comments by BJP MLC N Ramachander Rao and other MLCs too led to laughter in the House when he urged the Council Chairman to take the initiative to ensure good media coverage for the Council proceedings on par with the Assembly proceedings.
The Chairman himself left the members laughing when he admonished Ministers G Jagadish Reddy and Vemula Prashanth Reddy in a lighter vein to occupy their seats rather than standing in the House during the Legislative proceedings. They were chatting with fellow TRS MLCs in the last rows, but rushed back to their seats. The session went on smoothly and was adjourned to meet on September 14.