As expected, the Congress made a clean sweep of the District Cooperative Central Bank (DCCB) and District Cooperative Marketing Society (DCMS) directors’ posts across the state, the elections for which were held on Monday.
The outcome of the elections has come as shot in the arm for the Congress whose image had hit an all-time low in the recent months with MLAs deserting the party thinking they have better prospects with YS Jagan Mohan Reddy in coastal Andhra or K Chandrasekhara Rao in Telangana.
Commenting on the results, PCC president Botcha Satyanarayana said in Vizianagaram: “The elections have shown that farmers are with Congress. We knew that we will be winning the DCCBs because we won a maximum number of PACS. The trend indicates the growing faith of the farmers in the party.”
Though the Congress had made a sweep of the cooperative elections, it had to work for it. To protect its voters from poaching, it entertained them at camps in resorts or took them on pilgrimage. Opposition parties alleged that their voters were lured by Congress with the offer of money. However, what counts finally is victory and it is very much with Congress. TDP and YSR Congress said they did not take the polls seriously since they knew the ruling party would always have an advantage in cooperative elections.
“Only farmers who are supporters of the Congress have been enrolled as members of societies,” one TDP leader said.
Barring Khammam and Kadapa districts, Congress grabbed a majority number of DCCB director posts across the state.
In Guntur, Prakasam and Anantapur districts, there is a stay on elections.
The presidents and vice-presidents of DCCBs will be elected on Tuesday.
The whiff of success was in the air the very day when the results of Primary Agriculture Cooperative Society elections, held in two phases, were announced a few days ago. The Congress bagged more than 60 percent of the societies, giving a clear indication that a majority of the DCCBs would also be in its kitty.
The elections have blown the myth of the invincibility of YS Jagan Mohan Reddy. After Jagan made a clean sweep Assembly byelections by winning 15 out of the 18 seats in June last year, an impression gained ground, mostly among Congress cadres, that the voters are with Jagan Mohan Reddy. But the cooperative elections had proved that his influence is on the wane. The YSR Congress lay routed totally in the cooperative elections.
Even in Kadapa, the lone DCCB that it has won, the YSR Congress had to earn every vote that had been cast. Of the 14 director posts, the YSRC got eight, while the remaining six went to the Congress.
In Kurnool, another important Rayalaseema district for Jagan Mohan Reddy, the Congress made a clean sweep of all the 10 posts, leaving nothing to others. Though YSRC fought for four posts, it drew a blank.
The Telugu Desam Party too had to eat a humble pie in the elections. It had to contend itself with Khammam, which it won with the help of the CPI. Here, the TDP-CPI combine won 13 seats, restricting the Congress to six.
The TRS which has enormous influence in the Telangana region also drew a blank in the DCCB elections. For instance, in Karimnagar, out of the 15 director posts, the Congress won 14 and interestingly the remaining one seat went to the BJP.
In Adilabad, the contest was between two Congress groups--one headed by MLC Premasagara Rao and the other by Nirmal MLA E Meheswara Reddy. Premasagara Rao’s panel won nine director posts, while Maheswara Reddy’s panel won three. In the end, the Congress won all the director posts. In coastal Andhra districts too, YSR Congress lay bruised with the Congress having a field day. In East and West Godavari districts, YSRC and the TDP drew blank.