YS Jagan Odharpu Yatra : Part I
For the past one week, YS Jagan has been touring parts of Andhra and Telangana. The sole aim of the tour was for Jagan to console the families whose family members committed suicide on hearing the news of his father and former chief minister YS Rajashekar Reddy’s tragic death and also to personally hand over the promised financial aid on behalf of YSR trust. Even though Jagan is touring after seven months of his father’s death, he was able to draw surprisingly huge crowds. Looking at the crowd turnout, some analysts have even gone to the extent of saying that Jagan’s popularity among the masses has surpassed that of his father.
With each passing day in the tour, Jagan has been solidifying his father’s legacy by un-veiling tens of statues of YS Rajashekar Reddy. At the same time, he is also trying to establish himself as a force to reckon with in the state politics. Though this tour was supposed to be non-political, so far it has clearly been a display of Jagan’s strength and popularity.
With this tour Jagan is bound to get back a huge number of MLAs who gave up on him after the Congress high command snubbed his chances for becoming the chief minister. Meaning, Jagan would control enough number of MLAs that are sufficient to de-stabilize the government. Speculation has already begun that this could be the reason behind Congress high command’s decision for holding off on Rosaiah’s cabinet expansion. Supposedly, the high command didn’t want to irk Jagan or his followers.
Jagan is even touring the Telangana region. This is the reason why he stands out from other politicians. At a time when the separate Telangana movement has reached its peak, Jagan has pledged his support for united Andhra Pradesh. Now, he was bold enough to tour the Khammam district which is part of Telangana. In the present circumstances, not many politicians from Telangana region can tour Seemandhra regions or vice versa. But Jagan did it in grand style and with huge fan fare.
Of course, Khammam was a careful and strategic choice by Jagan’s camp. Telangana sentiment in Khammam district is relatively lesser than when compared to Warangal or Karimnagar districts. But even in Khammam there have been minor incidents where few Telanganites confronted Jagan. Districts like Warangal and Karimnagar will be the main challenge for Jagan. If he can soothe the Telanganites and successfully tour those districts, he will earn huge following and respect in the state. Jagan’s tour in districts where hardcore Telangana sentiment is prevalent could make or break his political career in state politics.