Thousands mourn Indian minister

Sept. 4, 2009 at 10:09 AM

HYDERABAD, India, Sept. 4 (UPI) -- Thousands of mourners turned out Friday to say goodbye to the chief minister of India's fourth largest state, Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy.

The 60-year-old Reddy, credited with reviving the Congress Party's fortunes in Andhra Pradesh, was killed in a helicopter crash Wednesday.

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress Party President Sonia Gandhi joined other top party leaders in placing wreaths on his body, the Press Trust of India reports.

Reddy's untimely death is expected to dramatically change the political landscape in Andhra Pradesh.

The Telugu Desam Party that he toppled after 10 years of rule may get a fresh lease on life, The Economic Times says.

With Reddy gone, the Congress Party may be hit by bitter squabbles providing the means for a TDP victory in 2014, the newspaper says.

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