Visakhapatnam: With elections nearing, leaders of various parties have decided to up their ante in their poll campaigns.
While the TD cadres are all smiles about their leader and AP Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu’s whirlwind tour and roadshows in Vizag on Friday, Mr Naidu is being criticised for not touring Gajuwaka constituency.
Mr Naidu was supposed to tour the Gajuwaka constituency, but in the last minute, he changed plans. Rumours are that Mr Naidu did not want to campaign in Gajuwaka because he does not want to hamper the winning chances of Jana Sena chief Pawan Kalyan, who is contesting from the constituency (apart from Bheemavaram).
Reciprocating Mr Naidu’s gesture, the JS chief too is not campaigning in Mangalagiri constituency where Mr Naidu’s son N. Lokesh is contesting.
Mr Naidu’s move of skipping his poll campaign in Gajuwaka and Mr Pawan’s no-show at Mangalagiri have not only drawn flak but also fuelled rumours about the TD’s secret pact with the Janasena.
YSRC leader Botsa Satyanarayana said it was evident that Mr Naidu and Mr Pawan were in secret ties. He urged the people not to vote for parties that indulge in manipulation.
Jana Sena’s Gajuwaka candidate V.V. Lakshmi-narayana, however, said all these reports were baseless.
He said, “The reason for Mr Naidu not campaigning in Gajuwaka is that the TD is aware of its poor prospects there. Jana Sena chief Pawan Kalyan is not campaigning at Mangala-giri because we are very confident that we will win there. The voters are in our favor because they kow that we aim to trigger a change in governance.”
About his local connection, Mr Lakshminarayana said, “My dad worked in the Sileru plant. My mother used to stay in Vizag. I was in my mother’s womb during that time. So I have tasted the food and water of Vizag. I am, therefore, a localite and I also promise my voters that I will remain accessible and stay here, come what may.”
On his experience of political life, he said, “I entered politics to serve the people on a larger scale. I am still taking baby steps and have a long way to go. I hope to learn things with experience and our manifesto, which is people-centric, will be taken to the people aggressively.”
Meanwhile, the TD MLA contestant from the Gajuwaka constituency Mr Palla Srinivas Rao downplayed all the accusations made by the YSRCP on the secret TD-Janasena deal. He stated that since Mr Chandrababu Naidu had only four hours for the whirlwind tour, he had to ensure that his trip was comprehensive.
“Since Mr Naidu's trip from Kurnool was already delayed, we had very little time to cover different constituencies. If he were to conduct the campaign in Gajuwaka as planned, then he would have had to go back into the airport after coming out, which was a cumbersome process. Instead, we zeroed in on one straight route forward from the airport(only highways). Moreover, we want Mr Naidu garu to campaign in segments that are vulnerable like Bheemili, and not Gajuwaka,” Srinivas explained.
Srinivas further argued that the YSRC is spitting venom on the TD leaders because they have realized that they cannot win....