Nellore: Cross voting limited the victory margin of TD nominee for MLC local bodies seat in Nellore, Vakati Narayana Reddy, to 87 votes. The party has more than 100 votes compared to YSRC. Of the 851 votes, 850 were polled with seven being declared invalid. One of the votes had a tick mark put before NOTA. Of the 843 votes, Vakati secured 465 votes as against 378 bagged by his only opponent Anam Vijayakumar Reddy of YSR Congress.
The counting got over within an hour on Monday morning because of meticulous arrangements by the administration and the Returning officer A. MD. Imtiaz with five tables to count the votes. Last minute efforts by the TD district unit president and MLC Beeda Ravichandra to woo 70 odd YSRC members at the instance of minister P. Narayana saved the party from an otherwise embarrassing situation.
If not for the open statements of YSRC that many voters in TD camp would vote for YSRC, the minister and Ravichandra might not have attempted to go after YSRC members because there were 504 voters in TD camps at Mahabalipuram near Chennai as against 330 in YSRC camps, a senior leader of the party said. TD leaders have, meanwhile, launched an investigation to find out who the black sheep were among those who received Rs 3 lakh per vote. Of the 504 voters in the camp, TD got only 465. The probe is aimed at identifying the 39 voters.
Senior TD leader and MLC Somireddy Chandramohan Reddy said cross voting is common in local body elections when asked for drop in anticipated majority. Meanwhile YSRC functionaries have been blaming lack of coordination, absence of collective effort and negligence on the part of their leaders for the debacle. “We did not have enough numbers but we did well and the results would have been different if we could manage 40 more votes. It is time for introspection to prepare ourselves for 2019 election. Fragmented leadership is hurting the party,” a senior leader of the party observed.
Somireddy efforts led to TD win in Kadapa:
Somireddy Chandramohan Reddy’s efforts to sort out differences between TD veterans and migrants from the YSRC is one of the factors that have contributed to TD’s victory in Kadapa.
Mr Reddy, an MLC and a TD politburo member, had a tough time bringing about an amiable rapport between TD leaders and migrants from YSRC, especially at Proddutur, Jammalamadugu and Badvel.
Besides keeping local body members in good humour, he also dealt firmly with party members wherever necessary. He reprimanded TD civic body members in Proddatur when they threatened to boycott the election until the row between the two groups regarding the sharing of the Municipal Chairperson post was settled. They fell in line after he questioned their reasons for linking the issue with the MLC elections, for which the stakes were very high.
He also played a key role in bringing about harmony between Audinaryana Reddy and Ramasubba Reddy at Jamma-lamadugu, Varadarajulu Reddy and Linga Reddy at Proddatur, and Vijayamma and Jayaramaiah at Badvel. Speaking to this newspaper, he said that speeding up of the Galeru-Nagari project, and the Handri-Neeva project, and bringing of Gandikota water to Pulivendula had created confidence among people, about TD in Kadapa district.
He said the TDP’s discipline and YSRC’s lack of commitment had contributed to their victory. He added that the win was the result of the collective efforts of TD leaders including Minister Ganta Srinivasa Rao, Rajya Sabha member C.M. Ramesh and Kadapa district unit president Srinivasulu Reddy.