Former Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy’s daughter Y.S. Sharmila on Tuesday vowed to bring “Rajanna Rajyam in Telangana”.
Sharmila, who is sister of present Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and YSR Congress Party president Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy, on Tuesday began consultations with loyalists of her late father here amid reports that she is planning to float a new party in Telangana.
“There is no Rajanna Rajyam here. Why it’s not there. Why can’t we bring it,” she said in a brief chat with media persons outside Lotus Pond, the YSR family residence.
“We will bring it,” she replied when asked if she would be bringing Rajanna Rajyam in Telangana. She said she would soon announce all the details.
Rajanna Rajyam is a reference to the rule of Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy in undivided Andhra Pradesh.
YSR, as Rajasekhara Reddy was popularly known, was chief minister of Andhra Pradesh from 2004 to 2009, when he died in a helicopter crash.
Following his father’s death and subsequent developments in Congress, Jagan Mohan Reddy quit the party to float YSR Congress Party.
Sharmila began consultation with YSR loyalists from united Nalgonda district. This will be the first in a series of meetings she will be holding over next few days. She will be eliciting their views before deciding her next course of action.
Addressing the meeting, Sharmila said though many years have passed since the death of his father, his popularity has not waned.
“His rule was golden rule. Every farmer lived like king. He built pucca house for every poor. He wanted to see that every poor student get good education and job. He used to say poverty is a curse. Since ill-health pushes poor into debts, he brought Arogyasri. Today this is not the situation. I want Rajanna Rajyam back. I believe only we can bring it,” she told the YSR loyalists.
Sharmila said the meeting was the first step as part of the process. “I don’t know the ground realities like you and what you see and experience in your respective places. Give me your suggestions and advise. I have come to hear you and understand,” she added.
Lotus Pond in posh Jubliee Hills, was abuzz with activity since Tuesday morning as large number of her supporters descended there from various parts of the state.
A festive mood prevailed at Lotus Pond amid beating of drums and bursting of fire crackers. A huge flexi carrying Sharmila’s picture with her father and hailing her leadership was installed at the residence.
Sharmila, who arrived with her husband Anil Kumar from Bengaluru on Monday night, came out of the house to wave at her supporters.
There have been speculations for last few days that Sharmila will float a new party in Telangana.
“We don’t know if this exercise is aimed at forming a new party or strengthening YSR Congress Party in Telangana. Whatever decision Sharmila or Jagan take, we will abide by it,” said a YSR supporter who came from Warangal district.
Sharmila’s supporters recall the active role she played in mobilizing people’s support through her yatra across undivided Andhra Pradesh when Jagan Mohan Reddy was in jail in disproportionate assets case in 2012.
The Jagan Mohan Reddy-led YSR Congress Party had not contested Telangana Assembly elections in 2018 and Lok Sabha polls in 2019 as the party was focusing on Andhra Pradesh. As the party wrested power in Andhra Pradesh from Telugu Desam Party (TDP) in 2019, YSRCP is believed to be working to revive its activity in Telangana.
In 2014 elections, YSRCP had bagged three Assembly and one Lok Sabha seat in Telangana. However, all of them later joined Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS). Since then the party was almost inactive in Telangana, which was carved out of Andhra Pradesh in June, 2014.
YSR enjoyed huge support in Telangana. YSRCP leaders believe that many people in the state still rever the later leader for several revolutionary welfare schemes implemented by him.
Sharmila, who had actively campaigned for YSR Congress Party in 2014 and 2019 polls in Andhra Pradesh, is also said to enjoy good support among the party cadre in Telangana.