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YSR death a blow for north Andhra leaders

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Rallying point: Students of Andhra University led by NSUI, shouting slogans in front of Registrar’s office in Visakhapatnam on Saturday in support of Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy. —
Rallying point: Students of Andhra University led by NSUI, shouting slogans in front of Registrar’s office in Visakhapatnam on Saturday in support of Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy. —

Special Correspondent

Most of them enjoyed power for quite some time, thanks to Rajasekhara Reddy

Election of new CLP leader likely to have its impact on chances of present Ministers

Botcha has ability to force his way like he did in case of securing ticket for his family members

VISAKHAPATNAM: The sudden demise of Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy has come as a big blow to the north Andhra Congress leaders, who had been his strong supporters for quite some time and enjoyed power, thanks to him.

For, with the change in guard, their fortunes are likely to witness some fluctuation.

Barring the Revenue Minister Dharmana Prasada Rao, senior leader from Srikakulam in the region, the other three Ministers – Satrucharla Vijayarama Raju (Transport) also from Srikakulam district, Botcha Satyanarayana (Panchayat Raj) from Vizianagaram district and Pasupuleti Balaraju (Tribal Welfare) from Visakhapatnam owe their ascent to power entirely to YSR.

In fact, YSR was so fond of Mr. Satyanarayana that he even bailed him out of the Volkswagen imbroglio by shifting him from the portfolio of Major Industries.

But in the case of Mr. Balaraju, he took him into the Cabinet going by his experience as MLA from 1989-94, despite the fact that the party leader from the Visakhapatnam agency always contested as a rebel in the elections from 1994 when he failed to secure the party ticket, but proved successful this year when he again got the nomination.

The election of a new CLP leader is likely to have its impact on the chances of Mr. Vijayarama Raju, Mr. Satyanarayana and Mr. Balaraju.

Though Mr. Satyanarayana has the ability to force his way like he did in the case of securing party tickets to contest elections for his family members in his native district, the case of the other two is different as they had only YSR to support them.

Fate hangs in balance

Their fate now hangs in balance notwithstanding the reports and the Cabinet members would continue without change under the interim Chief Minister K. Rosaiah.

For, once a new Chief Minister is sworn in, even if he were to be YSR’s son Jaganmohan Reddy, the fortunes of north Andhra leaders are likely to be affected.

Worst sufferer

Party-wise, the worst sufferer appears to be former Minister Konathala Ramakrishna who lost the Anakapalle Assembly seat in the latest elections.

Though he remains the tallest Congress leader in the district now, Mr. Ramakrishna was the most trusted lieutenant of YSR in north Andhra.

There was even talk that he would be favoured with the post of special envoy of Andhra Pradesh at New Delhi where he had a long stint as Lok Sabha member in the past, or some other posts like that of the chairman of Visakhapatnam Urban Development Authority which is lying vacant.

But with the YSR’s sudden demise, his chances have nose-dived.


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