The YSR Congress on Thursday appeared on course for a overwhelming victory in Andhra Pradesh with its candidates leading in 150 seats, dealing a knockout blow to the Chandrababu Naidu-led Telugu Desam Party.
The TDP is leading in 24 seats and actor-politician's Jana Sena party in one as per the latest Election Commission data. The Y S Jaganmohan Reddy-led YSRC may end up with over a three-fourths majority in the 175-member Assembly. YSRC sources said the party's Legislature Party will meet here on May 25 to formally elect Jaganmohan Reddy as its leader. Reddy will take oath as Chief Minister in the temple-town of Tirupati on May 30, the sources said.
With his party set to wrest power, Reddy Thursday termed it as people's victory. He also said the YSRC's victory was expected. "I sincerely thank the people who overwhelmingly voted for YSRC and blessed it. I also thank them for exercising their franchise in large numbers and enhanced the value of democracy," Jaganmohan Reddy said in a Facebook post.
"I will live up to the expectations of the people," he promised. As the trends indicated a clear lead for the YSRC, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao called Reddy over phone and congratulated him over the YSRC's thumping win in the general elections. YSRC candidates are leading in 24 Lok Sabha seats and the TDP in one, according to the latest trends.
Wishing Reddy all the best, Rao hoped he would lead AP further on the path of progress. Later, talking to the media at his residence here, the YSRC chief congratulated Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the BJP's stupendous performance in the Lok Sabha polls. Reddy asserted that his fight for securing special category status for Andhra Pradesh would continue.
He declined to speak about Congress president Rahul Gandhi. Several top TDP leaders, including many ministers, are on the verge of defeat.
Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu is leading in Kuppam but his son and state IT Minister Nara Lokesh lagging behind by over 8,900 votes in Mangalagiri segment in his first electoral battle. Jaganmohan Reddy is also leading in Pulivendula assembly segment.
State TDP president and minister K Kala Venkata Rao, ministers P Narayana, Somireddy Chandramohan Reddy, Ganta Srinivasa Rao, K Atchannaidu, K Ravindra, K Srinivasulu, N Amarnatha Reddy, P Pulla Rao, Bhuma Akhila Priya, N Anand Babu, Assembly Speaker Kodela Sivaprasada Rao, Deputy Speaker Mandali Buddha Prasad are trailing by considerable margins to their YSR Congress rivals in their respective constituencies.
Other senior TDP leaders also look set to bite the dust. Film star and MLA Nandamuri Balakrishna, however, is leading in Hindupur Assembly segment. Jana Sena founder and film star Pawan Kalyan is trailing in the Bhimavaram and Gajuwaka segments he contested.