Apart from political archrivals Nehru (INC) and Radha (YSRC) , Yalamanchili Ravi (TDP) enters the poll battle

Among the seven Assembly constituencies under the Vijayawada Parliamentary segment, Vijayawada (East) is considered an important segment not only because of its demographic profile but also for its political contours.

Though the constituency is considered to have a dominant presence of the Kapu community, there is also a sizeable population of Kammas, Vysyas and those from the Backward Classes. Vijayawada (East) is considered the most dynamic as well as sensitive for two of the prominent political families have been archrivals since years. Devineni Rajasekhar (Nehru) of the Congress and Vangaveeti Radhakrishna (Radha) of the YSRC pitch their tents in this constituency.

Apart from them, with sitting MLA Yalamanchili Ravi joining the TDP, it is going to be a triangular fight in this constituency in the coming general elections.

Post-delimitation in 2009, Vijayawada Parliamentary constituency is made up of seven Assembly segments -- Vijayawada (East), Vijayawada (West), Vijayawada (Central), Mylavaram, Tiruvur (SC), Jaggaiahpet and Nandigama.

Vijayawada (East) is made up of some of the most important locations such as Machavaram, Gunadala, Patamata, Moghalrajpuram, Benz Circle, part of Bandar Road, Autonagar, Krishnalanka, Ranigarithota and Ramalingeswara Nagar.

Voters’ profile

Coming to the total electorate, it has 2.6 lakh voters with men and women almost evenly poised. The profile of voters is almost an equitable combination of affluent, middle class, lower middle class and BPL segments and this is what makes the segment very dynamic. The voter turnout from the past four elections which stands at a healthy average of about 67 per cent says it all.

Going by the political dynamics of the segment in the past, no political party could ever stake claim as every party had its turn to be elected. In 1978, Nadendla Bhaskar Rao (INC) was elected, while Adusumilli Jayaprakash had emerged winner on TDP ticket in 1983. In 1985, Vangaveeti Mohan Ranga (INC) had come victorious, while in 1989 and 1994, Vangaveeti Ratnakumari (INC) had won the polls.

Kota Srinivas Rao from the BJP had won the elections in 1999, while Vangaveeti Radhakrishna (INC) had sealed the victory in 2004. In 2009, it was Yalamanchili Ravi who won the elections on the PRP ticket.

Traffic woes

Amid such dicey political dynamics in the Vijayawada (East), the segment has been plagued by several issues, the major one being the horrible traffic. Two main highways-- NH9 (between Hyderabad-Machilipatnam) and NH5 (between Chennai-Kolkata) pass through the constituency and as per the estimate, around 60,000 vehicles pass through the Benz circle where both the highways intersect. Construction of a flyover at the Benz Circle and widening of the highway between Benz Circle and Machilipatnam have been among the long-pending demand of the people.

Flooding a perennial problem

Another perennial problem is flooding. About 60,000 people live along the Krishna river bank from Krishnalanka to Yanamalakuduru. With no river bund at some places and weak bunds at some places, inundation has been a recurring problem for residents. Though Rs.100 crore was sanctioned by the State government in the past, the authorities concerned and the political leaders never looked into it.

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