The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and Yuvajana Shramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP) turned the Nandyal bye-election into a prestige battle. The postal ballots received for the bye-election, however, paint a picture of voter discontent with both the regional parties receiving zero postal votes.
Out of the 250 postal ballot votes, 39 have been declared invalid and 211 NOTA. This means TDP and YSRCP did not poll a single vote in the postal ballots.
Did the high-pitch campaign put off the voters?
YSRCP chief YS Jagan was warned by the state Election Commission for his comments against TDP chief and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu. During the bypoll campaign, YS Jagan said “there is nothing wrong if Chandrababu Naidu is shot dead on the road for not fulfilling election promises”.
Nonetheless, TDP candidate Bhuma Brahmananda Reddy is leading with 31062 votes after six rounds of counting, followed by YSRCP Silpa Chandra Mohan Reddy with 20813 votes. The Congress, a party that once dominated the Rayalaseema region, has been relegated to third position.
The bypoll in the seat was necessitated after the sitting MLA Bhuma Nagi Reddy died of a heart attack on March 12. Nagi Reddy was elected on YSRCP ticket in 2014 elections but switched loyalties to TDP in February 2016.
TDP has fielded Bhuma Nagi Reddy’s nephew Bhuma Brahmananda Reddy, 32, while YSRCP has fielded TDP rebel Silpa Chandra Mohan Reddy.