Veteran actress and Congress party candidate for Secunderabad constituency in an interview to a News channel said that, ‘I am not a money minded woman, and I hates such people. Money is the last priority in my life. I came to politics, just because I am attracted with the welfare schemes implemented by YS. Rajashekar Reddy. He is also a service oriented person like me. I very well knew about him. I think both our views are of same kind. That’s why he prefers me for contesting in the elections. Though I am new entrant to politics, I will do my best to serve the people, even if they vote against me.’
With the first phase of polling done, folks have begun to dig deep into their resources and they are trying to come up with whatever information they can. So coming to the crucial Secunderabad area, it is being said that the experienced Talasani Srinivas Yadav might just be the chosen one as per reliable sources.
Given his approach and the work he has done for the below poverty line people, he seems to have scored some points. However, it is also being said that Jayasudha who is making her political debut has got some appeal amongst the women voters and her religious tag is also working in her favor since there are many Christian families that stay in the segment. Let us see how this goes.
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When megastar Chiranjeevi came in with his Praja Rajyam Party all he expected was a landslide Tsunami and history to be rewritten in the political history of Andhra Pradesh. Unfortunately, it has not taken him long to realize that reality is far more hitting than the hype he wanted to create. Now, the matter has come quite far and PRP has been fighting tooth and nail at all constituencies in Election-2009 and that too with the big giants Congress and Mahakootami.
Chiru’s team seems to have got the first reality jolt of elections after looking at what happened during the first phase of elections. Many of the PRP candidates are said to have returned to the headquarters and are informing that they could not sustain the sheer money power that both Congress and Mahakootami had used during the polls. Even some of the best names in PRP like Tammineni Sitaram and Kala Venkat Rao were said to be pushed to free their pockets during the final hours of voting.
The ticket holders who fought at the Telangana segment are said to be stating that they could not stand up to the heat since they did not have enough money to keep their hopes alive. Ironically, even some of the most ardent devotees of Chiru are said to have asked for money when they wanted to vote. The point of relief is, there was a fair amount of polling done to PRP but that was solely due to the image of Chiru and these voters comprised of youngsters and ladies.
The feedback from phase 1 has got the think tank of PRP into some major restructuring of their strategies for phase 2 which is considered even more crucial. PRP was looking at making the most of their presence during the second phase as the coastal belt was supposedly their strong fort. Though they are aware that some of their best and strongest candidates are battling it out on the 23rd, the reality bites from the first phase seems to have given them a wake up call of sorts. For now, they are banking on the charisma factor and they have realized that if they could add the power of money to it, the results will be very much in their favor. It now remains to be seen how they will tune themselves to the required conditions to gain victory not ignoring the stiff competition they would be getting from Congress and Mahakootami. This seems to be a game of money and mind than following a true democratic process.
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Jr. NTR appeared on television just two days before the voting for the first phase of polling and urged the people to vote for the TDP. NTR is now taking rest as advised by the doctors after his accident. Jr. NTR’s speech was found to be much too dramatic by the people. Many felt that he overdid the act by wearing khakhi clothes, a yellow TDP scarf around his neck and his theatrics.
JR. NTR is now set to come up with yet another appeal to the voters in a live broadcast on TV. It remains to be seen if he will resort the same theatrics as he did the first time or will he come up with a simple yet heartfelt appeal for votes.
The Praja Rajyam could be a game-changer in the second phase of elections on April 23, though it did not fare too well in the first phase.
It is believed that the Praja Rajyam will take up to 25 per cent of the votes in the segments where it commands influence, and up to 10 per cent elsewhere. The big question is from which party the votes will come from.
The second phase polls cover 140 Assembly seats in 10 districts of coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema and is crucial to both the Congress and the Telugu Desam.
According to intelligence reports, the Congress can win 60 seats in the first phase and 90 out of the 140 going to the polls in the second. Winning anything less than 90 will make it difficult to retain power.
The TD and its poll partners have to win at least 60 seats in the second phase, after claiming that it will get 90 seats in the first. Both the Congress and the TD have acknowledged that they will suffer Chiranjeevi cuts in East and West God-avari districts. But it is the Chiranjeevi impact in Nell-ore, Prakasam, Guntur and Krishna districts that is wo-rrying the two main parties.
The Praja Rajyam candidates will poll between 5,000 and 20,000 votes in seats in these districts. That is a sizeable number in a keen contest. In Rayalaseema, however, the Praja Rajyam may not cut heavily into the Congress and TD votes as its influence is waning; the fight could be confined to a very few segments.
According to sources, Praja Rajyam candidates have edge over its rivals in Kakinada and Amalapuram Lok Sabha seats out of the 20 going to polls on April 23. Its influence is more felt in East and West Godavari districts. PR candidates have edge in the Assembly segments of Anantapur, Allagadda, Panyam, Alur, Rajampet, Proddutur and Tirupati, where Chiranjeevi is the party candidate.
It also expects a strong showing in Kavali, Nellore Town, Ongole, Giddalur, Guntur West, Vijayawada West, Bandar, Eluru, Polavaram and Palacole, where Chiranjeevi is also contesting. Jaggampet, Ramachandrapuram, Mummadivaram, Kottapeta, Mandapeta, Rajanagaram, Rajahmundry City, Peddapuram, P. Gannavaram and Kakinada Urban are other seats where the Praja Rajyam is seen to be strong.
A ruling Congress party candidate for the Andhra Pradesh assembly in the state’s Anantapur district has been arrested by Karnataka police in connection with an attempt to murder case.
T. Prakash Reddy, who is a candidate from the Rapthadu assembly constituency, was arrested by a police team from Bangalore on Sunday. He was taken to Bangalore, where a court sent him to judicial custody.
The arrest of Prakash Reddy has come as a blow to the ruling party at a time when Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy is campaigning in Anantapur district in Rayalaseema region.
The police said Prakash Reddy was an accused in the case in which acid was thrown at a manidentified only as Krishnamurthy in connection with a land dispute. The attack took place in 1997 near Bangalore.
Prakash Reddy, one of the 10 accused in the case, was booked for attempt to murder. Though a Bangalore court declared him a proclaimed offender and issued warrants against him, he had failed to appear before the court.
With the Election Commission directing police to execute all pending arrest warrants, the police sent a team to Anantapur to arrest him.
The Congress candidate’s arrest came a day before the chief minister’s visit to Rapthadu constituency to campaign for Prakash Reddy, in an area where the Congress is riven by factions.
Local Congress leaders have alleged that his rival Telugu Desam Party (TDP) candidate Paritala Sunita was behind the arrest. Sunita is widow of Paritala Ravi, a former minister who was gunned down by his rivals in Anantapur in 2005.
Prakash Reddy is also one of the accused in the Jubilee Hills bomb blast case of 1996. The bomb attack was carried out on the convoy of Ravi in Hyderabad. While the TDP leader survived, 25 other people in the convoy were killed in the blast.
The omission of Telangana Rashtra Samiti president K. Chandrashekar Rao from the final rally of Mahakutami at Tirupati on Monday has raised several doubts. While managers of Mahakutami claimed they did not feel the necessity of inviting Mr. Rao to the meeting, he has himself taken cover saying he had developed sore feet caused by extensive campaigning till the other day.
‘Bribing’ the rain god!
Politicians are never found wanting when it comes to scoring brownie points against one another. TDP leaders have finally found out a counter to the Congress’ claims that Varuna Deva (rain god) is a Congress man with former Minister P. Chandrasekhar put up an interesting query. “Why did the Congress government spend Rs. 100 crore on cloud seeding if Varuna is really a Congress man? Was the amount meant to be a bribe to please him?”
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The Chief Electoral Officer, Dr.I.V.Subbarao told media that there will be separate information booths in several urban areas to give prior information to voters about the existence of their names in the voter list. Election Watch would be involved in the task of providing information.
PRP Rajhamundry Lok Sabha Constituency candidate Krishnam Raju , while conducting road show at Chagallu, faints and fell down in his campaigning vehicle. He was rushed to nearest hospital in Rajhamundry for treatment. He is said to be effected by sun-stroke. His condition is stable and slowly improving.
According to party sources, Praja Rajyam party president Chiranjeevi may visit him tomorrow. His close friend Murali Mohan, who is contesting against him as a TDP Lok Sabha candidate, visited him at hospital and wished for his early recovery.
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With the second phase of poll date nearing, TDP’s smile is beginning to widen what with indications that the party could easily bag
eight out of 14 assembly constituencies in Krishna district where it received a drubbing in the last elections. The PRP is also on a leatherhunt by giving Congress a run for its money.
Both ministers in the YSR cabinet – Pinnamaneni Venkateswara Rao (Gudivada) and Mandali Budhaprasad (Avanigadda) – are far behind PRP candidates Ravi Venkateswara Rao and Simhadri Ramesh. “The ministers could be fighting for the second or third slots,” an analyst said.
The other minister Koneru Ranga Rao, who took voluntary retirement from politics, was left as a mute spectator even as TDP had made huge inroads in his home constituency of Tiruvur. Congress nominees – D Padma Jyothy, Parameswara Rao and D Y Das from Tiruvur, Nandigama and Pamarru respectively – are lagging behind their TDP opponents due to severe infighting among the Congress leaders.
Sources said the winning chances of TDP candidates in SC constituencies are bright, while local MP Lagadapati Rajagopal was exposed for not picking up the momentum in some of the assembly seats.
Senior PRP leader Buragadda Vedavyas, however, is finding the going tough at Machilipatnam where no local leader is backing him. Both Vedavyas and Congress candidate Perni Venkateswara Rao alias Nani are laying focus on Kapu voters, while TDP candidate Kollu Ravindra, a fisherman, is banking on his community people’s support.
Sources said Congress candidates Devineni Nehru (Vijayawada East), M V P Apparao (Nuziveedu), K P Saradhi (Penamalur), S Udayabhanu (Jaggaiahpet) are going strong where as Buddhaprasad (Avanigadda), Jogi Ramesh (Pedana), Perni Nani (Machilipatnam), Malladi Vishnu (Central) and Padma Jyothi (Tiruvur) are up against some serious challenge from both TDP and PRP nominees.
However, Prajarajyam’s Vangaveeti Radhakrishna in Central and Srinivas in West segment are looking confident and have fair chances of snatching the seats from their rivals. “The contest is very strong in six assembly segments where the Congress and TDP could share the honours,” a political observer from Tenali said.