Industrialist Prasad V Potluri also known as PVP, who owns several business firms in the Telugu states joined Jagan Mohan Reddy's YSRCP on Wednesday in Hyderabad. YSRCP General Secretary Vijayasai Reddy and party leaders like Malladi Vishnu, Vellampalli Srinivas were also present when PVP joined the party.
His political plunge comes with less than a month to go for the Andhra Assembly Elections and the Lok Sabha Elections. The buzz in political circles is that he would be contesting from the Lok Sabha constituency of Vijayawada against TDP's sitting candidate Kesineni Srinivas (Nani). Prasad owns PVP Ventures and is also owner of the Hyderabad Hotshots, one of the six franchises of Indian Badminton League and former co-owner of the Kerala Blasters Football Club. According to reports, PVP had reportedly expected a TDP ticket in the 2014 Lok Sabha Election, however, Chandrababu Naidu had given it to Kesineni Srinivas.
Speaking to the media, PVP said he had been instructed to contest from the Vijayawada parliament seat by party leadership. "I was born and brought up in Vijayawada, from schooling to engineering I have studied in Vijayawada. I came into public life for service. Vijayawada development is my agenda not politics," he said while adding that Jagan has a clear vision for development of the state.
When asked whether he was pressured into joining the YSRCP, he said that India being a free country any one can do what they want to do and no one can pressure him against his will.
Meanwhile, Kakinada TDP sitting MP Thota Narasimham along with his wife Thota Vani also joined the YSRCP. Thota Narasimham had reportedly decided to quit the TDP as the party denied a ticket to his wife Vani to contest from the Jaggampet Assembly constituency.
Thota Narasimham had reportedly requested the TDP leadership to give a ticket to his wife as he had decided to not to contest in the Assembly or Lok Sabha Elections.
PVP joining the YSRCP has come as a morale boost to the party, which now has a candidate to take on Kesineni Srinivas in Vijayawada, while Thota Narasimhamâ€™s defection adds to its strength in Kakinada .
Andhra has 175 Assembly and 25 Lok Sabha constituencies. Simultaneous polls will be held for the Assembly and Lok Sabha constituencies on April 11. It will see a multi-cornered contest with the ruling TDP, YSRCP, Pawan Kalyanâ€™s Jana Sena, Congress and the BJP squaring off against each other.