Hyderabad: In fresh trouble for the Congress in Andhra Pradesh, 24 of its MLAs and two TDP rebel legislators on Monday resigned protesting inclusion of late chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy's name in the CBI FIR in a probe into his son Jaganmohan's assets.
   
The ruling Congress MLAs resigned both from the Assembly and the primary membership of the party over the issue and faxed the resignation letters to APCC headquarters.
   
The 26 MLAs, who submitted their resignations to Legislature Secretary S Raja Sadaram on Monday, have been sailing with Jagan, Kadapa MP and YSR Congress President, for the past few months.
   
Disqualification petitions are pending against seven of these MLAs, including one who did not resign on Monday.
   
Three Jagan-loyal MLAs from Telangana region did not submit their resignations claiming they had already put in their papers over the statehood issue.
   
Those who did not resign include Konda Surekha, Jayasudha Kapoor and Kunja Satyavathi.
   
Though their earlier resignations were rejected by Assembly Speaker Nadendla Manohar, along with 98 other rejections, the three MLAs contended that their papers still held good.
     
"We will challenge the rejection of our resignations legally. The cause for which we tendered our resignations still holds good," Konda Surekha told an agency.
   
It was for the Telangana cause that they had resigned and not for Jagan, she admitted but added that they had quit the Congress party on Monday on the Jagan issue.
   
The lone MLA of YSR Congress and its honorary president Y S Vijayamma did not tender her resignation which party sources said was "part of a strategy".
 
In the event of the Assembly Speaker accepting the resignation of the 29 MLAs, it may cause a fresh headache to the Congress as it would enjoy a slender margin over the magic figure of 148 in the 294-member House.
   
The party-wise break-up is as follows: Congress – 155, TDP – 91, Praja Rajyam – 18, TRS – 11, Majlis Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) – 7, CPI – 4, BJP – 2, CPI(M) – 1, Lok Satta – 1 and Independents – 3. One seat is vacant.
   
With Chiranjeevi's Praja Rajyam now merging with Congress, the strength of the ruling party goes up to 173 and it can also count on the support of MIM (7) and three Independents.

That takes the strength of Congress to 183.
   
With Jagan claiming the support of 29 MLAs, the Congress is still left with 154 MLAs - six more that the half-way mark of 148.

(Agencies)