By B Sanyasi Rao Visakhapatnam, May 1 UNI | 3 months ago

An interesting electoral battle lies ahead in the Visakhapatnam Sabha seat as YSR Congress Party honorary President and Visakhapatnam Lok Sabha candidate Y S Vijayamma is engaged in a three cornered contest at the Visakhapatnam Parliamentary constituency on May 7.

BJP party president Dr Kambampati Haribabu is contesting against Ms Vijayamma.

Visakhapatnam is also the administrative headquarters of the Visakhapatnam district. This district was split from the Vizianagaram district in 1979, and is currently part of the Red Corridor, being victimised by Maoist insurgency. This district has a population of 42,88,113, as per the 2011 Census.

This Lok Sabha constituency comprises the following Legislative Assembly segments: Srungavarapukota, Bhimili, Visakhapatnam East, Visakhapatnam South, Visakhapatnam North, Visakhapatnam West and Gajuwaka.

There was no sitting MP in sight for the constituency as Daggubati Purandeswari who won from here in 2009 as Congress candidate, has quit the party citing bifurcation of the state. She has joined BJP and is contesting the present elections from Rajampet Parliamentary constituency in Kadapa.

However, the port city has gained prominence in the backdrop of state's division.

This was amply evident on the last day of filing nominations on April 19, as two of the contestants both from major political parties, who filed their nominations for the Visakhapatnam Parliamentary Constituency have stressed the need for electing a local person as MP to ensure better development of the City and the region. Anakapalle sitting MP, Sabbam Hari, who is now with the Jai Samaikyandhra Party of former Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy, said Visakhapatnam people were of the opinion that non-local leaders have never honoured their wishes.

A former Mayor of Municipal Corporation of Visakhapatnam believes that this election will reflect the aspirations of the local people. After the state was divided, importance of Visakhapatnam has increased and a local leader was necessary to speak for it.

He argues that people want their representative available for them all the time, who is aware of all local issues of the region and keen on addressing them.

He ridiculed huge hoardings come up at regular intervals welcoming the MP representing the constituency earlier.

Ms Vijayamma during her campaign trail focused on the problems of fishermen community. She evoked lukewarm response all along the road show route that touched key areas in all the three constituencies of Visakhapatnam East, North and South. Wooing the minority Muslim community she pointed out that it was because of her husband and former Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy that the community got enlisted under the BC (E) list.

She also addressed the pollution problem of the city and promised to develop the IT and pharmaceutical sector. MORE UNI BSR AE SD AN1658 NNNN c:usersuserdesktopunicommond1DR71.html ************************************************************************

In Visakhapatnam South, the entire area is covered under coal and iron-ore dust because of activities at the

Visakhapatnam Port Trust. It has also damaged the 800-year-old dargah, another glaring example of neglect of heritage structures.

Ruling Congress candidates of both Parliament and Assembly are facing tough time in the once stronghold of the national party.

Seven MLAs and two MPs who won as candidates of either PRP or Congress in Visakhapatnam district in 2009 elections have desevted their.

APCC president N Raghuveera Reddy during his visit to the city for flagging off 'Bus Yatra' said, "youngsters and the sections that had not been represented well so far would get priority in the selection of candidates for the general elections." He was hopeful that good things were in the offing for the Congress.

He said the party had an open mind on extending tax holiday to existing industrial units along with fresh units as part of the package the Centre would be giving to the rest of Andhra Pradesh.

He asserted that the party would do well in the elections in spite of it being blamed by all other parties for bifurcation of the state though they had also given their consent. "Congress has taken a beating several times but was not finished as many are predicting now..," he concluded.

Bolisetty Satyanarayana, a political novice, is Congress candidate for Visakhapatnam Lok Sabha. An industrialist by profession and a native of Visakhapatnam, he strongly believes that people would vote for him because he is a local man and no one else can do a better job than him. He had an IT company started here in 1999 besides a warehouse in the Visakhapatnam port.

As part of the seat sharing deal, TDP has given four out of 25 Lok Sabha seats and 13 out of 175 Assembly seats in the Seemandhra region besides three MLC seats to BJP.

The BJP, which got the Visakhapatnam Parliamentary seat, is fielding Andhra Pradesh Party President, Dr. Kambampati Haribabu from here. With the support of strong TDP cadres in place and riding on Modi, wave Haribabu is hopeful of his win and BJP too is taking it as a matter of prestige.

CPI (M) politburo member B V Raghavulu who was here for the nomination of his party's candidate and State secretariat member Ch. Narasingarao, expressed his views that corporate houses were not allowing the regional parties to have alliance with the left parties and working hard to get BJP elected in the ensuing elections so that their interests were protected.

He was of the view that the Telugu Desam by forging an alliance with the communal BJP was only providing an opportunity for that party to get strengthened.

There was no difference in the economic policies of the BJP and the Congress and the former would be more proactive in allowing FDIs in important sectors and it was important to defeat both alliances, he said.

The Left parties must improve their strength and also not allow the BJP and the Congress to gain power. They should support the secular parties where they were not in the contest and defeat the two, he said.

For CPI, Manam Anjaneyulu had filed his nominations from here. However, both the Left party candidates withdrewn their candidatures on 23 April deadline.

The CPI (M) said it always supported a unified Andhra Pradesh and hence has an election understanding with Jai Samaikhyandra Party in Seemandhra region.

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has fielded Kuna Ramam as its candidate for Visakhapatnam Lok Sabha seat and promised to end pollution by Visakhapatnam port and scrap Petroleum, Chemical and Petrochemical Investment Region (PCPIR) project.

They would scrap the Special Economic Zone Act and strive for formation of a separate railway zone with Visakhapatnam as its headquarters. They were in favour of banning export of iron ore and other minerals.

(Posted on 01-05-2014)