Heavy turnout of voters may help Jagan

Heavy turnout of voters, particularly women voters indicating anti-establishment mood and sympathy, is giving sleepless nights to the Congress in Andhra Pradesh which has left no stone unturned to contain YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) chief YS Jaganmohan Reddy.

Both the Congress and the main opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) fought against Jagan, their common enemy in the by-polls. Both lost some of their leaders to the YSRCP, and are now worried that more could join the YSRCP camp, if it gets maximum seats out of the 18 Assembly constituencies that went for polls on Tuesday. “As many as 25 MLAs are ready to shift their loyalties to Jagan after the declaration of results on 15 June,” said party spokesperson Ambati Rambabu.

Even though the Congress high command has assured that there will be no change of guard in AP till 2014 general elections, the future of all the main campaigners in the by-polls, namely Kirankumar Reddy, Botsa Satyanarayana, Chiranjeevi and All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary Ghulam Nabi Azad, hangs in balance. Apart from the Congress, future of the TDP will also be in jeopardy if Jagan’s party gets majority seats in the by-polls. Chandrababu Naidu knows how difficult it is to run a party that has been constantly defeated in every election. As the TDP lost two general elections earlier, Naidu’s hope to come back to power was dashed by Chiranjeevi’s infant party Praia Rajyaam that split TDP votes in 2009.

“The heavy turnout of voters is an indication that Jagan will win majority of seats. But in the long run, YSRCP will vanish,” said Vijayawada Congress MP, Lagadapati Rajaagopal.

Two Congress legislators, Alla Nani and SK Ranga Raao, quit the Congress to join YSRCP within days of Jagan’s arrest. “The Congress, which was happy looking at lukewarm reaction of voters to Jagan’s arrest, received a rude shock in the shape of Vijayamma and Sharmila,” said political analyst Telakapalli Ravi. “The tears shed by the mother-daughter duo had a devastating effect on the chances of the Congress,” he added.

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