Old rivals to vie with social workers in the land of struggles

Bagepalli Assembly constituency that shares its borders with Andhra Pradesh has unique features that predominantly carry the essence of the Andhra culture.

So much so that people here have ingrained tradition and qualities of the neighbouring state — earn your right through struggle. For decades, people here have been victims of atrocities, slavery and feudalism, hence, they believe in fighting for what they want. The constituency frequently witnesses protests be it for unemployment, lack of basic facilities, job insecurity and water crisis.

In the forthcoming election, ticket aspirants are using these issues as their trump cards and are trying various means to lure the voters. There are aspirants who are banking on their affiliation to the major political parties — Congress, JD(S), CPM and BJP and there are others who are trying to establish themselves by doing small-time social works.

Incumbent legislator N Sampangi is said to be the prospective candidate from the Congress. Sampangi, who failed to get ticket in 1999, had contested as independent and even won the election. He is trying his luck for the third time.

Moreover, lack of probable candidates from the constituency in the party, will also prove advantageous to Sampangi, observe political experts. Known as close aide of Union Minister M Veerappa Moily in the party circles, Sampangi is making the ground work to face the voters. Besides, S N Subba Reddy, who has held mass marriage and distribution of cattle programmes is also said to be lobbying for the ticket from the party. If denied, he may contest as independent, sources said. Last year, he had contested as independent candidate but withdrew his nomination in the eleventh hour.

Bagepalli is considered as the strong bastion of the CPM in the whole State and the party State secretary  G V Srirama Reddy will contest the election this time. CPM’s bond with the constituency, goes back to 1983.

Appaswami Reddy was the first legislator to be elected on CPM ticket in 1983. Later, it was in 1994 and 2004, G V Srirama Reddy won the Assembly election. However, he lost by a margin of votes in 2008 election.

However, this year, Reddy does not want to lose again, hence, he has begun his poll exercise since one year through organising various programmes including a mega State convention in chikkabllapur in rural areas.

From JD(S), ZP member Harinatha Reddy is said to be the probable candidate and he is said to be lobbying with the party high command. However, D J Nagaraj Reddy, who failed to make a mark during the last election, is also said to be aspiring for a ticket from the party, it is said.

Newly-formed Karnataka Janatha Party’s probable face C R Manohar has taken up various social works to build rapport with the electorate. He had unsuccessfully contested the Lok Sabha election in 2008 as JD (S) candidate from Chikkaballapur. Apart from KJP, it is Badava Shramika Raithara Congress party that is making its foray into the constituency. M T Lakshminarayana and Srinivasa Reddy are the ticket aspirants, said the party sources. During the last ZP election, Lakshmi Narayana had contested on the BJP ticket.

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