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Setback for Chandrababu Naidu as 4 TDP Rajya Sabha MPs join BJP

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New Delhi, June 20: In a major set back for Chandrababu Naidu's Telugu Desam Party (TDP), four out of the six Rajya Sabha members of the TDP joined the Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday.

TDP MPs of Rajya Sabha- YS Chowdary, CM Ramesh, TG Venkatesh and GM Rao, today passed a resolution to merge Legislature Party of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) with BJP.

File photo of Chandrababu Naidu

"Yes, I am leaving the TDP. I will join the BJP. I have been a former member of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidhyarti Parishad (ABVP) and the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha," Venkatesh was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

Party chief N Chandrababu Naidu, who is currently vacationing with his family in the US, said the crisis was not new and his workers have nothing to be nervous about, but he "condemned the BJP's attempts to weaken the TDP".

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"We fought with the BJP only for Special Category Status and the state's interests. We sacrificed Central Ministers for Special Status," news agency ANI quoted him as saying.

The developments came amid claims by BJP leaders that several leaders from various parties in both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana were keen to join their party.

The move will add to the BJP's strength in the Rajya Sabha -- where the NDA has only 102 members in the 245-seat house.

The TDP lost power to YSRCP in Andhra Pradesh in the recent elections. The party could secure only 23 seats of the 151 Assembly seats. It won only three of the 25 Lok Sabha seats in the state.

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