Naming youth leader Punthala Suresh as its candidate, BJP said it was to oppose dynastic politics and family rule.

File image of BJP state chief Somu Veerraju speaking at a meetingImsge: AP BJP/Facebook
news Badvel bye-election Friday, October 08, 2021 - 09:56

Dashing the YSRCP’s hopes for a unanimous bye-poll to the Badvel Assembly constituency in Andhra Pradesh, the BJP on Thursday announced Punthala Suresh as its candidate. Suresh's name figured in the list of 12 candidates announced by the BJP's central leadership for Assembly bye-polls in various states. The Badvel bye-election was necessitated following the demise of sitting MLA Dr Gunthoti Venkata Subbaiah from the ruling YSRCP. It has been a tradition for Andhra Pradesh’s political parties to not field candidates in the event of a sitting MLA passing away and their kin being unanimously elected.  

Suresh's candidature was announced a day before nominations are set to end for the October 30 bye-election to the Badvel (SC) constituency in Kadapa district. BJP state president Somu Veerraju tweeted that BJP named the youth leader as its candidate to oppose dynastic politics and family rule and public welfare is its motto. He wrote that for the last 14 years as a student leader and for the last five years as a youth leader, Suresh carried many struggles over people's issues.The BJP leader appealed to the people to vote for a young leader who can fight from 'galli' to 'Dilli' to resolve people's problems.

By announcing its candidate, the BJP has queered the pitch for ruling YSR Congress Party (YSRCP), which was hoping for unanimous election of Dasari Sudha, widow of sitting legislator Venkatasubbaiah, who died in March after prolonged illness. Though the main opposition TDP and BJP's alliance partner Jana Sena led by actor Pawan Kalyan decided to stay away from the contest to ensure unanimous election of Sudha, BJP decided to field its candidate. Pawan Kalyan is not likely to extend his support to the BJP candidate, earlier during Tirupati Lok Sabha bye election Pawan's Jana Sena supported BJP candidate and campaigned.  

Addressing a public meeting in Kothacheruvu of Anantapur district on October 2, Pawan Kalyan had announced Jana Sena's decision to stay away from the contest. He stated that the decision was taken after consulting his party men as the ruling party has made the wife of the incumbent as the candidate. He urged other parties to make the election unanimous. Pawan's announcement came two days after his talks with Somu Veeraju on deciding the alliance candidate for the by-election.

The TDP decided not to contest the bye-poll in line with its tradition. The TDP politburo at its meeting on October 3 took the decision to stay out of the contest as YSRCP has fielded the widow of the deceased MLA. TDP state president K Atchannaidu recalled that it was their party that started the tradition of not fielding a candidate whenever the widow of a deceased (sitting) legislator contested a by-election. Although TDP had announced Obulapuram Rajasekhar, who lost the 2019 election, as its candidate for Badvel more than a month ago, it later said it was stepping back from the polls.

As per the poll schedule announced by the Election Commission of India, October 8 is the last date for filing of nominations. Scrutiny of nominations will be taken up on October 11. The last date for withdrawal of nominations is October 13.

Badvel has a total 2,16,139 voters, including 1,07,340 women and two transgender persons.

In the 2019 elections, Venkatasubbaiah won the elections defeating his nearest rival Obulapuram Rajasekhar of TDP by a margin of 44,734 votes. In the elections, BJP candidate T Jayaramulu had secured just 735 votes.

Badvel in the native district of Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy and has been a bastion of YSR family supporters since 2009.

With IANS inputs 

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