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Monday, May 28, 2012

trouble in Rayalaseema following Jaganmohan Reddy's arrest

In earlier Centuries, there existed dynasties – the eldest [or sometimes the bravest] son of the King became the King either by process of handing over by the Father to the son or by removal of father by the son………  that is what we read in History. 

Surprisingly, this place was once part of the Chola Empire between the 11th and 14th centuries AD. It became part of the Vijayanagar Empire in the latter part of 14th century. The region was under the control of Gandikota Nayaks, governors of the Vijayanagara empire for about two centuries. The most illustrious ruler during this time was Pemmasani Thimma Nayudu – but please do not ask, who was the ruler defeated by the YSR –  it is Kadapa or Cuddapah District, now known as   YSR Kadapa District  from July 2010, renamed in honour of Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy, a former chief minister of Andhra Pradesh who was a native of the district and who was popularly known by his initials "YSR".  

There is high drama in parts of Andhra; some members of his family have gone on a hunger strike to protest his arrest.  Police have enforced prohibitory orders banning assembly of 5 or more people.  Undaunted by the disruption of their two-hour protest, Reddy’s family members are now sitting outside the premises of their house, surrounded by a throng of supporters. They also say that they will fast until he is released.  The Party has called for a daylong Andhra Pradesh shutdown Monday to protest the arrest 

In the 9th LS Elections [1989-91], YS Rajashekar  Reddy won the Cuddapah seat on behalf of Indian National Congress; he represented the constituency in Tenth; Eleventh; Twelfth; 13th; 14th – in the  15th, it was his only son YS Jagan Mohan Reddy who got relected in 2011 also.  But he resigned his Congress seat, contested for his own party YSR Congress party in May 2011 in the by-elections and won with a historic margin of 5,21,000 votes while his mother Y S Vijaya Lakshmi won with a majority of 85,191 votes in Pulivendula Assembly constituency. Jagan Mohan polled 6,55,496 votes and won by a margin of 5,21,000 votes which is a record in the state's history.

Dynasty rule is nothing new to Indian Centre and States – Nehru, Indira, Rajiv and Congress (with Sonia); M Karunanidhi (Maran, Stalin, Alagiri, Kanimozhi, Dayanidhi Maran….); Charan Singh – Ajit Singh, Mulayam Singh Yadav – Akilesh Yadav; - only a few in a long list of examples……… from a small-time businessman to a formidable political leader, Y S Jaganmohan Reddy -- better known as Jagan -- had a rather smooth ride for over a decade before hitting one bump after another and finally finding himself in CBI custody.   According to his election affidavit, Jagan Reddy is India’s richest Member of Parliament with declared assets (net of liabilities) valued at Rs 365 crore. His wife has properties, cash and jewellery worth Rs 47.25 crore (net of liabilities). That a mere MP can accumulate so much wealth is anyway cause for concern; that he has not disclosed all his assets – often held by proxies – shows how the powerful manipulate the system to accumulate wealth for their own ends.  It is not of what he owns but more of the  fact that Jagan has misled the Commission about his assets. For example, he did not declare his palatial houses in Hyderabad and Bangalore worth over Rs 200 crore.   After three days of intense questioning,CBI has arrested Jagan on charges of criminal conspiracy,  cheating and falsification of accounts of the IPC and under the Prevention of Corruption Act. The agency is investigating what is being called the Jagan assets case on the Andhra Pradesh high courts directive in July 2011.The court order was in response to a PIL by a Congress MLA.

The rise and emergence of the only son of the  late Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh Y S Rajasekhara Reddy, has been phenomenal. From a  tiny power company Sandur in Karnataka, it has exploded in to many states including North eastern states.  His business graph rose meteorically once his father became the state Chief Minister in 2004 and Jagan started venturing into many other businesses including cement plants, infrastructure and media. His father’s tragic death in a helicopter crash in Sept 2009 has literally changed everything.  He wanted the CM’s throne but Congress High command was unwilling.  The disillusioned rebelled and went on 'Odarpu Yatra' path to build his political career independently, much to the discomfiture of the ruling party.  In no time, Jagan's popularity graph shot upwards while that of the ruling Congress' dipped gradually.

When Kiran kumar reddy became the CM in Nov 2010, Jagan came out of Congress fold and started his own party.  Now in a political move, he is trapped in disproportionate asset case and arrested  by CBI.  The speed with which his assets have been acquired is under CBI scanner now.  Whether such cases conclude and that too in any timeframe is anybody’s guess and has a wealth of history !!

Kadapa, formerly Cuddapah, is in Rayalseema, a region considered to be hot and arid.  The name reportedly originated from ‘Gadapa’ meaning threshold or gate – the gateway from the West to the most Sacred Hill of Thirumala.   Legend has it that Kishkindakanda occurred in Vontimitta in Kadapa. 

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.
28th May 2012.

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