Alliance, caste, anti-incumbency What led to TDPs sweep in Andhra MLC polls?

politics After TDP secured all three graduate constituency seats in the recent MLC polls in Andhra Pradesh, party chief Chandrababu Naidu called the results indicative of an anti-incumbent rebellion against the YSRCP government. Having secured all three graduate constituency seats in the Member of Legislative Council (MLC) elections, the Opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) in Andhra Pradesh is optimistic. In a press meet held at the partys central office on Sunday, March 19, along with top leaders of the party, TDP president N Chandrababu Naidu said that the election results were indicative of an anti-incumbent rebellion among the voters. He referred to TDPs wins as a victory for the people, and added that by choosing TDP candidates, the electorate had placed their complete trust and confidence in the party. The TDP has wrested the graduates MLC seats in both West and East Rayalaseema as well as in the north coastal Andhra region. Opposition party leaders have since claimed that this victory was a referendum by the people of north Andhra and Rayalaseema against the ruling YSR Congress Party (YSRCP)'s plan to establish three capitals in the state. In the East Rayalaseema graduate constituency (Prakasam-Nellore-Chittoor), Kancharla Srikanth Choudhary of the TDP defeated Pernati Shyamprasad Reddy of the YSRCP after the counting of second preference votes, with a majority of more than 34,000. The loss came as a shock to the YSRCP, as the constituency has been a party stronghold for years. The TDP candidate for north coastal Andhra (Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram, and Srikakulam districts), Vepada Chiranjeevi Rao too obtained the required votes in the second preferential counting and defeated YSRCPs Sitamraju Sudhakar. The West Rayalaseema graduate constituency (Anantapur-Kurnool-Kadapa), where TDPs Bhumi Reddy Ramgopal Reddy emerged as winner, has meanwhile been embroiled in a controversy. Though YSRCP candidate V Raveendra Reddy had maintained a slim lead during the first round of counting, he fell short of the required number of votes to be declared the winner. The officials hence began counting the votes for second preferences, which eventually went in favour of the TDP. Later, however, the TDP candidate along with party supporters staged a protest at the counting station alleging that he was not given the declaration certificate even after the returning officer announced him as the winner. The party president also took this to the notice of the Election Commission of India (ECI) and the Andhra Pradesh State Election Commission (APSEC), alleging that the declaration certificate has been withheld due to pressure from Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddys office. The YSRCP also wrote to the ECI and the APSEC demanding that the votes be counted again, claiming that there were irregularities in counting and that YSRCP votes have been transferred to TDP bundles. What analysts say According to political analyst Telakapalli Ravi, the TDPs victory in the graduates seats is definitely a setback to the YSRCP. It demonstrates an anti-establishment sentiment among the graduates, particularly among those who are unemployed, he said. In addition, the TDP supremos strategy to tie up with the Left-aligned Progressive Democratic Front (PDF) for second priority votes have also helped them greatly, especially in the north coastal Andhra constituency, Ravi said. Nearly 8,000 second preferential votes came via the PDF in the north coastal constituency. But the TDP has not acknowledged this enough, he said. Pawan Kalyans Jana Sena Party sending a strong message to its voters against voting for the ruling party has also been a contributing factor, he added. Ravi said that caste has also played a significant role in the election, pointing out that north coastal Andhra MLC-elect Chiranjeevi Rao belonged to the Kapu community, a numerically strong Telugu caste. Chiranjeevi is also a well-known figure among the youngsters. He is a popular economics coach in the city and is widely known as Economics Chiranjeevi, he said. Political analyst and professor K Nageshwar believes that the election results from graduate constituencies cannot be considered as the opinion of the general public, as it is limited to only a section of registered graduate voters. But it still sends a strong message about the dissatisfaction among the educated class of the state. The vote was against YSRCP, not in the favour of TDP, he said. Development is a significant subject of debate among the urban middle class, Nageshwar said. Most middle class people do not care about welfare schemes. They are bothered about what immediately affects them factors such as roads, employment etc. But the government has not paid much attention to this, he said. He added that while development is a matter of concern in rural areas as well, it is mostly balanced out by the popularity of welfare schemes. Meanwhile, Sajjala Ramakrishna Reddy, Advisor to the Government of Andhra Pradesh for public affairs, told the media that the [graduate constituencies] did not represent the lakhs of beneficiaries of welfare schemes. We might not have done well in understanding this particular section of voters. But teachers have shown their support to us. Moreover, considerable votes were polled for our candidates. The Opposition candidates were able to poll more votes because of their alliance with the PDF, he added.

The News Minute 20 Mar 2023 3:53 pm

TDP and YSRCP MLAs clash in Andhra Assembly, both allege Dalit MLAs attacked

News Speaker Tammineni Sitharam suspended the opposition TDP MLAs from the House for the day following the disruption in the House proceedings. YOUTUBE/I&PR AP A tense situation prevailed during the Andhra Assembly session on Monday, March 20 as the MLAs of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) engaged in a scuffle close to the Speaker's podium. Speaker Tammineni Sitharam suspended the opposition TDP MLAs from the House for the day following the disruption in the House proceedings, and the House was stalled for a brief period. Members of the TDP proposed an adjournment motion to revoke GO No. 1 as soon as the Assembly's session on Monday got underway around 9 am, and they insisted that it be discussed. The MLAs also stood on the podium and threw bits of paper in the air. Holding placards, they raised slogans calling for the repeal of GO No. 1 and gathered around the Speaker's podium. Speaker Tammineni Sitaram pushed aside a placard that TDP MLA Dola Bala Veeranjaneya Swamy had placed close to his face. This soon caused arguments to break out between the Speaker and TDP MLAs which intensified and led to clashes as soon as the YSRCP MLAs came to the podium. TDP MLA Veeranjaneya and YSRCP MLA Sudhakar Babu both allegedly got hit during the clash. Following a stampede that occurred on December 28 at Kandukur in Nellore district during Chandrababu Naidu's roadshow, the government had issued the GO number 1 on January 2, prohibiting public gatherings on roads citing public safety. The TDP and Left parties including student organisations have called for Chalo Assembly rally on Monday in Vijayawada demanding repeal of the controversial GO. Former Andhra Chief Minister and TDP president Nara Chandrababu Naidu, condemned the attack on party MLAs inside the Assembly and called it the darkest day in the Assembly's history'. Further, he claimed that the attack on his partys Dalit MLA Dola Bala Veeranjaneya Swamy, was pre-planned. Meanwhile, the ruling YSRCP has accused TDP MLAs Veeranjaneya Swamy and Gorantla Butchaiah Chowdary of attacking its partys Dalit MLA Sudhakar Babu and Vellampalli Srinivas. Shocked to see our MLA Dr. Dola Swamy being attacked in the assembly by YSRCP MLAs. Today is a Black day for Andhra Pradesh because such a shameful incident has never happened in the hallowed halls of the assembly before.(1/3)#TDPDalitMLAattackedInAssembly pic.twitter.com/LmWFkxVbVy N Chandrababu Naidu (@ncbn) March 20, 2023 Reacting strongly to the attack on the party's MLA, TDP general secretary Nara Lokesh said, It is unclear if we live in a democracy or a kingdom of demons. Is calling for the repeal of GO 1, which crushes the opposition, illegal under CM Jagan's rule? Minister for Water Resources, Ambati Ramababu claimed that since the start of the Assembly session, the opposition has been interfering with proceedings and using suspensions as part of a deliberate strategy to garner attention for their own political gain. Read :Andhra: 14 TDP MLAs suspended for disrupting budget speech The YSRCP alleged that Dalit TDP MLA Dola Bala hurled expletives at Deputy Chief Minister K Narayana Swamy and the YSRCP MLAs. YSRCP MLAs VR Eliza and TJR Sudhakar Babu rushed to defend the Speaker during the commotion that followed. However, they were shoved by a TDP MLA, and TJR Sudhakar Babu was hurt as a result of the altercation. The House became tense when TDP MLA Gorantla Buchaiah pushed Vellampalli Srinivas, causing him to fall to the ground, the YSRCP stated in a press release. Responding to the attack, MLA Sudhakar said, This is not an attack on me; it is an attack on the entire SC community. Chandrababu Naidu opposes SCs speaking out or participating in politics. We will protest this attack with all our strength. TDP MLA Veeranjaneya, too, reacted to the attack on him and accused YSRCP MLAs VR Eliza and TJR Sudhakar of orchestrating it. I have been a member of the house for nine years now. People and members of the House know me well, The ruling party MLAs attacked me and accused me in turn, he said. The MLA asked the ruling party to release the unedited visuals and prove its claims.

The News Minute 20 Mar 2023 3:31 pm

Adani Krishnapatnam Port records highest coal loading of 12.95 MT

Adani Krishnapatnam Port commenced its operation in November 2009, and remained as the major contributor to the Vijayawada Divisions share in freight loading and revenue. NELLORE: Adani Krishnapatnam Port Private Siding Limited of Vijayawada Division, South Central Railway achieved a record coal loading of 12.95 MT by rail as on March 18. This is the highest-ever coal volume dealt in a financial year since its inception, surpassing the previous benchmark of 12.94 MT during the year 2014-15 corresponding period. During the current year, the port has loaded 17.40 million tonnes of commodities, with coal occupying a majority share of 75 per cent share in total loading and revenue. Adani Krishnapatnam Port commenced its operation in November 2009 and remained the major contributor to the Vijayawada Divisions share in freight loading and revenue. Coal and fertilizers are the major commodities dealt with at this port. The freight earnings of the port also reached to a new height of Rs 1,940.23 crore, which is 110 per cent more than the previous years (2021-22) revenue of Rs 923.61 crore. The growth rebound in freight loading is seen across the freight segment with all commodities witnessing higher loading levels during the current financial year compared to the same period in the last financial year. The commodity-wise loading in the financial year includes 12.95 MT of coal (75%), 2 MT of limestone (9%), 1.4 MT of fertilizers (8%) and 1 MT of other commodities (8%).DRM of Vijayawada Division Shivendra Mohan appreciated V Rambabu, IRTS, Sr DCM, G Somasekhar Naidu, DCM and the commercial team for their efforts.

The New Indian Express 20 Mar 2023 10:09 am

Paddy farmers in distress as unseasonal rains lash crop fields in Nellore

Paddy crop cultivated on over 3,597 hectares damagedin Nellore district; standing paddy crop on 1,350 hectares in 41 villages inundated in Sarvepalli alone; Bengal gram crop on 600 hectares in and around Udayagiri also hit

The Hindu 20 Mar 2023 8:07 am

No compromise in our fight to end peoples woes, says dissident YSRCP MLA in Andhra Pradesh

Funds had been put on hold by the Finance Department even after Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy had given the green signal, alleges Nellore MLA Kotamreddy Sridhar Reddy

The Hindu 19 Mar 2023 9:04 pm

TDP wins Rayalaseema MLC Graduates seats in AP

In West Rayalaseema, the ruling party has claimed a big win in the two Teachers constituencies. VIJAYAWADA:Results of elections to the Graduates and Teachers MLC seats have brought cheer for both YSRC and Opposition TDP. After winning the North Andhra Graduates MLC seat on Friday night, the TDP continued its winning streak and won the remaining two Graduates constituencies of West and East Rayalaseema. In Prakasam-Nellore-Chittoor, TDPs Kancharla Srikanth Choudhary was declared victorious by 34,110 votes against his rival Pernati Shyamprasad Reddy of YSRC after second priority vote counting. In West Rayalaseema, the ruling party has claimed a big win in the two Teachers constituencies. However, Anantapur-Kurnool-Kadapa Graduates seat was embroiled in a controversy. While YSRCs V Raveendra Reddy maintained lead from the first round of counting that started on March 16, he did not exceed 2,000.With none of the candidates getting a clear majority, the officials started counting of second preference votes on Saturday. Following this, tables turned in favour of TDPs B Ramgopal Reddy as votes of BJP, PDF and independents went in his favour. As soon as the result was out, YSRCs Raveendra Reddy and former MLA K Visweswara Reddy staged a protest alleging lapses in counting and demanded recounting. The party shot off a letter to the Chief Election Commission and AP Chief Electoral Officer. Poll results dont reflect anti-incumbency: Sajjala In the letter, they stated that they noticed transfer of YSRC votes to TDP bundles, which was later re-transferred. Demanding the votes be counted again, they alleged that there might be irregularities during the counting. Defeat in East Rayalaseema was shocking for the YSRC as it has a stronghold in the region with 32 legislators off the 36 Assembly constituencies falling under the graduates MLC seat. The party had formed a committee for enrolling graduates as voters, particularly in urban areas such as Nellore, Tirupati, Ongole and other major areas in the MLC Assembly constituency. Opposition leaders criticised that the YSRC, which tried to show its might by winning both Graduates and Teachers MLC seats in the East Rayalaseema region, fell flat on its face due to anti-incumbency. Though Energy Minister Peddireddy Ramachandra Reddy, who is also Rayalaseema regional coordinator for the party, monitored the election campaign, the ruling party has failed to attract graduate voters. TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu, too, wrote a letter to the election commission to declare the party candidates win from the West Rayalaseema graduats seat. Undeterred by the defeat in graduates MLC elections, YSRC general secretary and Government Advisor (Public Affairs) Sajjala Ramakrishna Reddy said the voters constitue a minor section of the society and that majority of the graduates are not beneficiaries of their welfare schemes. The MLC election results do not reflect anti-incumbency. In fact, we pulled a great victory by winning the two teachers constituencies in the MLC elections for the first time, he pointed out. Congratulating the three winning candidates, Naidu tweeted, I salute to the leaders and activists who have stood tall against the atrocities of the YSRC during the elections. This is a victory of the people and an indication of change. It is a good omen for the State. YSRC WRITES TO POLL PANEL, DEMANDS RECOUNT In a letter to the Chief Election Commission and Chief Electoral Officer of Andhra Pradesh, the YSRC stated that they noticed transfer of YSRC votes to TDP bundles, which was later re-transferred. Demanding the votes be counted again, they alleged that there might be irregularities during the counting

The New Indian Express 19 Mar 2023 7:49 am

Andhra Pradesh Budget: Rs 11,908 crore to develop irrigation with focus on pending projects

Presenting the budget, Finance Minister Buggana Rajendranath Reddy said the government is giving top priority to completion of the Polavaram Irrigation Project. VIJAYAWADA: The State government has earmarked Rs 11,908 crore for the development of water resources in the Budget 2023-24 presented in the Assembly on Thursday. The allocation is more than Rs 11,482.37 crore outlay in 2022-23. As per the revised estimates for 2022-23, the government has spent Rs 10,741.2 crore on irrigation and now the question is how much will it spend in 2023-24. Presenting the budget, Finance Minister Buggana Rajendranath Reddy said the government is giving top priority to completion of the Polavaram Irrigation Project. So far, 79.07% of the main dam and canal works have been completed. All measures are being taken to complete the R&R works simultaneously, he said. The Polavaram project, which is described as lifeline of Andhra Pradesh, witnessed the completion of spillway, approach channel, spill channel and pilot channel, besides two cofferdams (upper and lower).The works pertaining to filling up of scour pits near the lower cofferdam and construction of parallel diaphragm wall for the damaged port of the D-wall of the project during floods, are in progress now. Apart from Polavaram, the government has focused on completion of all other major projects taken up under the Jalayagnam scheme to provide better irrigation facility to farmland and provide drinking water to villages, besides meeting needs of industries in all districts. According to Buggana, the interlinking of Nagavali and Vamsadhara rivers is scheduled for completion by the end of March 2023 and Vamsadhara project phase-II of stage-II by June 2023 in Srikakulam district. The completion of Phase-I of Poola Subbaiah Veligonda Project is planned next year to draw water to Nallamala Sagar. The phase-I and II of HNSS Project are planned for completion by December 2023. The Phase-I of the GNSS Project is scheduled for completion by March 2025 and phase-II by March 2026. The Mekapati Goutham Reddy Sangam Barrage and Nellore Barrages across Penna were inaugurated by Chief Minister on September 6 last year to stabilise ayacut under Pennar Delta System, Kavali and Kanupur canals. This fulfils a solemn assurance made to the people of Nellore district, Buggana reminded. The 68 Tanks Project is completed and ready for inauguration in Kurnool and Nandyal districts. The project will meet the drinking water and irrigation requirements of 100 villages in a drought prone area. This will also fulfil the long pending dream of the people of the villages. Buggana said for the first time in several years, water was released to Godavari delta on June 1 and to Krishna delta on June 10 last year to ensure sowing of crops in time and therefore enabling harvesting before the onset of possible calamities. The early release of water to Nagarjuna Sagar Project canals on July 31 last year enabled farmers to reap a bountiful crop yield, he added. Irrigation projects in north coastal districts have been allocated Rs 394.23 crore, those in Prakasam Rs 301.15 crore, while in Anantapur, including HNSS got Rs 270.38 crore and projects in Kurnool Rs 594.56 crore. Telugu Ganga works have been allocated Rs 818.61 crore. A sum of Rs 23.37 crore has been allocated for the modernisation of Godavari Delta and Rs 279.06 crore to complete all the projects and develop the entire ayacut in Krishna delta, he added.

The New Indian Express 17 Mar 2023 9:48 am

Former minister, ex-CBI chief Vijaya Rama Rao passes away

Vijaya Rama Rao joined as an IPS trainee in 1959. Later, he was appointed the Commissioner of Police in Hyderabad. HYDERABAD:Former minister and ex-director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Vijaya Rama Rao, passed away after battling an illness in a private hospital in Hyderabad on Monday evening.He was admitted to a hospital in Jubilee Hills after having a brain stroke. Doctors said he died at 7 pm. His last rites would be performed at Mahaprasthanam in Hyderabad on Wednesday. He was 85. Vijaya Rama Rao joined as an IPS trainee in 1959. Later, he was appointed the Commissioner of Police in Hyderabad. As CBI director, he investigated cases like the hawala scam, the demolition of Babri Masjid and the Mumbai bomb blasts. In 1999, he entered into politics by joining the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and got elected as an MLA from the Khairatabad Assembly segment in Hyderabad defeating senior Congress leader P Janardhan Reddy. He also worked as a minister in the cabinet of the then Chief Minister of undivided Andhra Pradesh N Chandrababu Naidu. Vijaya Rama Rao was born in Eturunagaram, located in the Warangal district. He completed his schooling in Venkatagiri, which is situated in the Nellore district. Later, he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Madras University. In 1958, he joined SRR College as a lecturer, and subsequently, he was selected for Civil services. Full State honours Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao expressed shock over the passing of Vijaya Rama Rao and extended his heartfelt condolences to the bereaved family. He directed Chief Secretary Santhi Kumari to make arrangements for the former ministers final rites to be conducted with full State honours.

The New Indian Express 14 Mar 2023 12:14 pm

Pennar delta system modernisation fetches Nellore district CBIP Award

The district achieved the award in the Excellence in Integrated Water Resources Management category for the year 2022.

The New Indian Express 6 Mar 2023 8:29 am

AP: Six persons drown in pond after boat capsizes in Nellore

AP: Six persons drown in pond after boat capsizes in Nellore

The Times of India 27 Feb 2023 6:53 pm

Digitizing municipal services in 21 st century India: Winning citizens over with innovative, accessible and accountable e-governance

Its a hot and sultry afternoon in the tiny city of Nellore in Andhra Pradesh. Shanthi Reddy, aged 35, is a social worker who works in an informal settlement. As she stands next to the...

The Times of India 27 Feb 2023 10:12 am