Hyderabad: With by-polls for lone Lok Sabha and 18 assembly seats round the corner in Andhra Pradesh, ruling Congress is leaving no stone unturned to win the elections.

The party is striving to capitalise on the sentiments of the votes of non-Telangana regions in Andhra Pradesh by-elections which is seen as vital for the stability of the Congress government in the state.

It is noteworthy that only Parakal seat out of the total 18 assembly seats which are going to polls falls in Telangana region. The party is explaining to the voters that the state faces the threat of bifurcation in the form of possible creation of new Telangana state and only Congress can stop such moves.

However, the party is in catch-22 situation on deciding to list the “achievements” of its late Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy after launching repeated attacks against the latter’s son Jaganmohan Reddy on corruption issues.

Congress has started telling the voters that a vote for Jagan's party will lead to division of the state.

As Congress faces an uphill task in the bypolls, it is using desperate ways to win at least a few seats.

On one hand, Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy is pumping in crores of rupees from government coffers in constituencies going to bypolls for development works, on the other , party leaders, including ministers, are attacking Jagan over his alleged "ill-gotten" wealth and some are also levelling corruption charge against his late father and Chief Minister.

But a good section of Congress leadership is wary of openly targeting YSR, fearing it could backfire and leave Congress damaged.

State Minor Irrigation Minister T G Venkatesh, a strong protagonist of a unified AP, was vociferous in making the claim that vote for Jagan will split the state while a couple of MLAs are driving the same message home but in a guarded manner.

This theme may become louder as the campaign picks up in the coming days.

Vijayawada MP Lagadapati Rajagopal went a step further and said the Centre would take a positive decision acceptable to "80 per cent" of people only if Congress was elected in all the 18 seats. Rajagopal stopped short of saying that victory of Jagan's party in the bypolls could lead to bifurcation of AP.

Congress sources here say the MP, a "die-hard integrationist", came out with the claim only after getting approval of the high command.

On their part, Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy and Pradesh Congress Committee president Botsa Satyanarayana are going ahead with the campaign in their unique ways with the former talking about development and the latter spewing venom on Jagan.