The million-dollar question is can BRS supremo KCR will repeat history of becoming political saviour when regional parties’ election narratives may be contested when the State is experiencing political unrest?

Regional parties’ election-related narratives may be contested later, when the State is experiencing political unrest. Social scientists have used this phrase to characterise the current scenario in Andhra Pradesh, where the BJP-led Centre is making a hurried retreat from a risky and uncomfortable position that has arisen as a result of its decision to privatise the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant (VSP).

The BJP constructed a narrative at the time of the 2014 Lok Sabha elections in alliance with the Telugu Desam Party that it, if elected to power, would not allow any public sector  undertakings  to go wrongheaded. It was then thought that the BJP would revive the loss-making undertakings, including the  Visakhapatnam steel plant. But, when the BJP-led Union government announced all of a sudden its decision to privatise  the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant, the people in Andhra Pradesh were shocked.

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The people appealed to the political parties in the State – YSRCP, TDP and Jana Sena party of Pawan Kalyan – to launch a movement against the BJP and the Central government. But, when they failed to make their voices heard in Delhi, the people were disappointed.

Telangana State Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao’s foray into Andhra Pradesh politics and his campaign against the privatization of the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant has captured the imagination of people. KCR’s announcement that the Telangana government would participate in bidding has led to the BJP’s strategy turning on its head, according to social scientists.

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Visakhapatnam Steel Plant has a long saga of struggle and sacrifices. Several people sacrificed their lives not only in the Andhra region but also in the Telangana region. The people in the Telangana region too rose in revolt against the then Indira Gandhi-led Centre government. Stalwarts such as Tenneti Viswanatham, Goutu Latchanna, Putchalapalli Sundarayya, Chandra Rajeswara Rao, Tarimila Nagi Reddy and Vavilala Gopalakrishnaiah led the movement.

A move by a seasoned politician 45 years ago changed the landscape of Andhra Pradesh. He is none other than Marri Channa Reddy. He decided to take a plunge into active politics, after holding a gubernatorial post. He took the decision in Vijayawada, known then as the ‘political capital of Andhra Pradesh.’

Channa Reddy, known for his acerbic wit, flogged the then State   government, headed by Jalagam Vengal Rao, for denying accommodation even in the government guest house when Indira Gandhi made a halt in Vijayawada on her way to Deviseema which was devastated by the tidal wave in November 1977.

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Channa Reddy expressed confidence that he would be elected chief minister in the elections that would take place a few months later while engaging in political conversation with his supporters, among whom was Nadendla Bhaskar Rao, a prominent High Court attorney at the time, at the canal guest house in Vijayawada. He was correct.

The people of Andhra Pradesh enthusiastically voted for him despite the fact that he was the leader of the separate Telangana agitation and even threatened the AP settlers in Hyderabad. How successful will KCR be in Andhra Pradesh? The State has a lively debate about this. #hydnews #hydkhabar #livehyd