Dissidence hit TDP poll prospects in Kadapa?

In the 2024 elections, the TDP leadership made strategic moves from the candidate selection to campaigning to establish its presence in Kadapa, posing a formidable challenge to the ruling YSRC.
EVM image used for representational purpose only
EVM image used for representational purpose only

KADAPA : TDP contestants of Kadapa are said to have complained to the party leadership against ‘dissidents’ who did not cooperate with them during the election campaign and polling.

For the past two decades, Kadapa has been a bastion of the YS family. The Congress, under the leadership of YS Rajasekhara Reddy, dominated the elections in 2004 and 2009. Subsequently, the YSRC, led by Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, continued the family dominance in the 2014 and 2019 elections, delivering severe blow to the opposition TDP.

In the 2024 elections, the TDP leadership made strategic moves from the candidate selection to campaigning to establish its presence in Kadapa, posing a formidable challenge to the ruling YSRC. APCC chief YS Sharmila Reddy, who contested the Kdapa Lok Sabha constituency, campaigned for over two weeks, attempting to gain an upper hand over the ruling party. As a result, the YSRC faced stiff competition from both the TDP and the Congress in the district. TDP leaders believe that Sharmila’s presence might have resulted in cross-voting, benefiting them.

The erstwhile undivided Kadapa district consists of 10 Assembly and two parliamentary constituencies. While the ruling YSRC contested all the 10 Assembly and two Lok Sabha constituencies, the TDP, as part of alliance with the BJP and JSP, fielded candidates in one parliamentary and seven Assembly constituencies. The BJP contested Jammalamadugu and Badvel Assembly and Rajampet Lok Sabha constituencies, while the JSP contested from Railway Kodur.

The TDP is said to have posed a tough challenge to the YSRC in several constituencies, leading to a close contest in Kadapa, Proddatur, Mydukur, Kamalapuram and Rajampet.

TDP candidates Reddeppagari Madhavi Reddy (Kadapa Assembly), N Varadarajulu Reddy (Proddatur), and Putta Chaithanya Reddy (Kamalapuram), are said to have complained to the TDP leadership against those who did not cooperate with them during the election campaign and polling.

In Kadapa, former Zilla Parishad vice-chairperson G Lakshmi Reddy, her daughter-in-law Uma Devi, VS Amir Babu, Politburo member R Srinivasulu Reddy’s wife Madhavi Reddy aspired for the TDP ticket, which was ultimately allotted to Madhavi Reddy, leading to some leaders distancing themselves from her campaign.

Despite being persuaded by the party leadership, Lakshmi Reddy, Amir Babu and some other leaders did not cooperate with the candidate in the polling booth management on the polling day in appointment of TDP agents, sources said.

Similarly, Chaitanya Reddy alleged that G Praveen Kumar Reddy, in-charge of Proddatur constituency, worked against them in the latter’s native village Kogatam in Kamalapuram mandal. For Proddatur ticket, Praveen Kumar Reddy and CM Suresh were in the race. CM Ramesh and M Linga Reddy eventually supported Varadarajulu Reddy, but Praveen Kumar Reddy did not participate in the election campaign. Consequently, Varadarajulu Reddy is said to have complained to the party leadership against Praveen Kumar Reddy.

The action on the complaints made by the TDP candidates will largely depend on the election results. If the candidates win the elections, they may politically sideline the ‘dissidents’. If they lose, the existing factions may continue as usual affecting the TDP interests.

The TDP leadership may not remain silent without taking any action against the ‘dissidents’ for sabotaging the prospects of party candidates if it comes to power, a political analyst opined.

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