Jagan Mohan Reddy has swept the Andhra Pradesh assembly and parliament polls, and has shattered the hopes of Chandrababu Naidu and his plans for a king-maker role in the centre.
Chandrababu Naidu’s son Nara Lokesh is trailing from Mangalagiri, and many senior ministers are trailing along with him.
As results are flowing in, YSR Congress is leading in 24 of the 25 parliament seats and in the assembly Jagan is leading in 150 of the 175 seats. Film actor Pawan Kalyan who started the Jana sena party and who ran an intense campaign in atleast a few districts in the state is perhaps leading in one seat. The immensely popular actor contested from two seats, Bhimavaram and Gajuwaka.
It is literally a walkover for Jagan with him likely to get more than 50% of the popular vote. Naidu had led an intense campaign with the hope that the welfare schemes of his regime and the last minute doles that he gave to farmers, women and elderly would see him through. However, the polls indicate that it was not the case. Naidu’s TDP according to latest trends might be around 39% of the popular vote. The BJP has not opened its account and is not seen anywhere. Its voting percentage too is surprisingly low, at less than one percent.
For Jagan, the victory was hard earned, after a long padayatra and a tiring campaign. In 2014 too, it was said that the party was on the verge of victory but could not pull it off due to the alliance that the TDP had with BJP and Pawan Kalyan pitching in for the TDP-BJP alliance.
Now, Naidu was without the BJP and the help of Pawan Kalyan. Moreover, he had spent four years in the company of NDA in the centre, and had come out of claiming that he was not being given the special category status.
One important feature of this election in Andhra Pradesh was that due to some EVM glitches elections went on till late in the night in some places till 11.30 pm. There was a huge amount of enthusiasm from women and the elderly. This gave an impression that it might be TDP voters since the government had given them substantial doles during the election period. Another feature was that voters were very tightlipped on whom they had voted for.
Naidu recently said that he was very confident of winning and was keen to cobble up a coalition at the centre.
Now, trends indicate that he may win one parliament seat. There is nothing much that Naidu could do.