Jagan in jail, sister to start padayatra

With Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy in jail, his sister Y S Sharmila has taken over the responsibility of maintaining contact with people and taking the party forward. Sharmila (38) will launch a padayatra from the YSR family estate at Idupulapaya in Kadapa district on October 18. Christened Praja Prasthanam, she will walk through the entire state covering more than 2,200 km. A similar padayatra was undertaken by the late Y S Rajasekhara Reddy in 2003-04 which swept the Congress to power. The YSR Congress Party is calling Sharmila's yatra the second Praja Prasthanam.

YSRCP honorary president Y S Vijayalakshmi has said they will highlight the failure of the state government and its nexus with the TDP in targeting Jagan. "The padayatra will begin at Idupulapaya on October 18 and conclude at Srikakulam. Sharmila will carry out the programme and will be joined by other family members and when Jagan Mohan comes out, he will take over from us. In course of the padayatra, we will create a public opinion forcing the main opposition TDP to move a no-confidence motion against the state government which hardly governs and does not care for the common man and has been taxing indiscriminately and going to the extent of collecting power dues in retrospective effect and TDP remains silent, instead of taking the issue head on," Vijayalakshmi said.

The decision to entrust the task to Sharmila was taken at a meeting of YSRCP leaders on Thursday. With Jagan set to spend a few more months in jail after the Supreme Court denied him bail, the YSRCP decided that Sharmila should start the yatra to take the party forward rather than entrust the task to Jagan's mother Y S Vijayalakshmi. Many senior YSR Congress leaders who attended a meeting on Wednesday and again on Thursday felt that Sharmila should take over the public contact part while mother Vijayalakshmi handles party affairs.

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