Aruna Lakshmi pins hope on husband Gali Janardhana Reddy’s goodwill in Ballari

Ballari, which has more women voters than men, will see Aruna Lakshmi contest as the first woman MLA candidate, fielded by Kalyana Rajya Pragati Paksha, the newly formed party by Gali Janardhana Reddy.
File image of Gali Aruna Lakshmi
File image of Gali Aruna Lakshmi
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Aruna Lakshmi, wife of mining baron Gali Janardhana Reddy, is Kalyana Rajya Pragati Paksha (KRPP) party’s trump card in Karnataka’s Ballari in the upcoming Assembly elections. Reddy decided to field his wife in the constituency against his younger brother Somashekara Reddy, who is the incumbent MLA and the BJP candidate, while he chose to contest from neighbouring Gangavathi. The Supreme Court has banned Janardhana Reddy from entering Ballari. The ban was a bail condition imposed on the former Karnataka minister while the trial in the multi-crore illegal mining case in which he is accused is underway.

Aruna believes that the development that the border district saw when Janardhana Reddy was active in the region will resonate with the people of Ballari. She says the political fight in the constituency against her brother-in-law is not an internal family fight but a fight for development.

Speaking to TNM, she said, “I will not say that this is a fight within the family. Ballari has not seen development in the last 12 years. Janardhana Reddy had developed Ballari around 2008. People know that this is not a fight between two people from the same family. It is a fight for development and that is why I have been fielded. People know who developed Ballari and as the wife of Janardhana Reddy, I am sure they will bless me.”

Ballari has around 2.6 lakh voters, of which women are the majority. Aruna Lakshmi, who is the first woman to contest in Ballari as an MLA candidate, hopes that the women voters will stand by her. She says she has a detailed plan in store for her women if voted to power.

Aruna says she is touched by the heartening response she has received from the people of Ballari. “The people are blessing me and treating me as their own daughter. I will always be thankful for the love they are showering upon me. The love that I am witnessing when I visit their homes is heartening,” she said.

The other contestants from Ballari are Bharat Reddy from the Congress and Anil Lad from the JD(S).

Watch full interview:

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