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Candidates use Net to catch voters

They may be greenhorns in Andhra politics but young politicians who cannot hope to make such an impact from public stages.....

They may be greenhorns in Andhra politics but young politicians who cannot hope to make such an impact from public stages are using the Internet to unleash e-campaigns to gain the upper hand over their seasoned rivals. From designing and launching their own websites to sending personalised emails and interacting with voters online,novice and not-so-experienced politicians are clicking away.

“My website is mainly to enhance my image among the people. Even though I am contesting from a rural constituency where I don’t think many voters have Internet accessibility,I receive at least 10 emails daily. Not only people in my constituency but people in general should also know who,if elected,are likely to represent their state in Parliament,” says Palem Shrikanth Reddy.

Reddy,45,is a techie with a master’s degree in engineering from Stanford University,and will contest Lok Sabha elections on the TDP ticket from Kadapa.

Expressing his views frankly on his website on education,poverty alleviation and corruption,and replying to emails,Reddy has drawn several software professionals,lawyers and doctors to the TDP fold.

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“It is important that people know your background,what you have done in life,what you stand for and your priorities. People express themselves in different ways when writing to me on my website and I get different perspectives,” Reddy says.

The website of T Harish Rao of the Telangana Rashtra Samiti is a coup in image-building. In all its simplicity,the website puts him across as a “soft-spoken person committed to realising the goal of separate statehood for Telangana”.

The website of Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy,the CM’s son,contesting from Kadapa,is aimed more at dispelling the allegations made by opposition parties on him and his chief minister-father.

First published on: 18-03-2009 at 02:38 IST
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