Anumala Revanth Reddy is a man in a hurry. After joining the Congress, he also assumed charge of the Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee.
Bruised and down after the humiliating defeat in the 2018 elections, the Congress was desperately looking for a leader to revive its fortunes. A party that ruled the region for decades, including the 10 years that preceded the formation of Telangana, takes the credit for forming Telangana, but was still not able to send the message across. The party was looking for someone to take on the BRS, led by K Chandrashekar Rao, who looked invincible after his back-to-back triumph at the hustings, and regroup the Congress cadre and leaders that lost their hope.
Revanth Reddy fitted the bill. A streetfighter that he is, he hammered very hard to demystify the aura around KCR. And to do this, he left no stone unturned, including using unparliamentary langauge, as some would say .
His utterances paid off. The exodus to the Bharatiya Janata Party, which was trying to replace Congress as the main Opposition, stopped as he gave hope to those who survived the defeat. At a later stage, as Congress gained some lost ground, a reverse exodus was seen with leaders are coming back from the BJP. Another key contribution made by him was helping the Congress retain and replenish its Reddy arsenal, which were feeling suffocated and felt lost.
Unlike other political leaders, Revanth began his political journey as a local body representative. Though he started off as an ABVP activist, he later was groomed by Telugu Desam Party President N Chandrababu Naidu and was elected to the (undivided) Andhra Pradesh Assembly in 2009 from Kodangal constituency. He retained the seat in 2014 elections.
But he then was involved in the infamous Cash-for-Vote episode where he was caught red handed by the Anti-Corruption Bureau sleuths when he was trying to bribe an MLC in order to secure his vote. In a carefully crafted operation, the KCR government trapped him and filed a case in which TDP President N Chandrababu Naidu was also booked. This episode would haunt Revanth for a long time.
Finding no future for TDP in Telangana, he joined Congress in 2017 and was made the PCC President in 2021. This gave him enough time for him to prepare the cadre and party for the 2023 elections.
In order not to ruffle the feathers in a party that is historically known for internal squabbles, he took the seniors into confidence and kept the hard nuts in good humour. Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra, his padayatra and senior Congress leader Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka’s padayatra helped the Congress cash in on the strong anti-incumbancy sentiment across the State.