YSRCP wins 73 of 75 municipalities; hurts TDP further

In an encore of its 2019 general elections performance, the ruling YSR Congress Party swept the elections to urban local bodies from Srikakulam to Anantapur — from North Andhra to Rayalaseema — putting rest to any hopes the opposition TDP may have had of regaining some lost ground. The YSRC emerged victorious in 11 out of 11 municipal corporations and 73 out of 75 municipalities.

The results of the Eluru municipal corporation have been put on hold on the directions of the high court following a petition on alleged discrepancies in voters’ list. 

The TDP managed to win just two municipalities — Tadipatri in Anantapur district and Mydukur in Kadapa district. The BJP-Jana Sena Party alliance, meanwhile, grabbed a few seats but interestingly, it was actor Pawan Kalyan’s JSP that fared better than the saffron party.

The results come as a vindication of sorts for Chief Minister Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy, particularly for his three-capital formula and his agenda of welfare schemes. Reacting to the results, the Chief Minister tweeted, “This is a great victory of the people... this has further increased my responsibility. I will try hard to work as a member of your family.”

In Vijayawada and Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporations, the TDP did put up a fight, particularly in Vizag but the YSRCP managed to win a majority in both. In all the nine other corporations, including Tirupati where a bypoll for the Lok Sabha seat is due, the result was completely one-sided. In Tirupati, the YSRC won 48 out of 49 seats.

The TDP, which expected a decent show in Guntur and Vijayawada corporations, failed miserably in Guntur. In fact, TDP chief N. Chandrababu Naidu, during his campaign in these two corporations, tried hard to introduce the Amaravati sentiment, going so far as to ask the people if they had any shame to sit by when the capital was being shifted.

In Vizag, the YSRCP won 58 of the 98 divisions when reports last came in. The TDP won most of the seats in Gajuwaka, Pendurthi and Bheemili Assembly segments indicating that the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant privatisation issue has dented the prospects of the YSRCP to an extent. However, in Visakhapatnam North, West and East, the YSRCP won 90 per cent of the seats. 

In Kurnool, the proposed judicial capital, the TDP was confined to single digit. Of the 50 divisions, the YSRC won 44 while the TDP could win just six and the remaining went to independents.

In the other traditional TDP strongholds in the twin Godavari districts too, the YSRCP made its way. Incidentally, the two municipalities won by TDP are in Rayalaseema. It drew a blank in several municipalities in the twin Godavari districts. It was the JSP which made its presence felt in Amalapuram division of West Godavari and some parts of East Godavari.

The TDP also suffered setbacks in municipalities where its leaders are either sitting MLAs or have a strong base. Hindupur was one among them. Though actor Nandamuri Balakrishna campaigned for the party, it could win only six of the 38 wards. Similarly, Tuni represented by former finance minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu, Peddapuram represented by Nimmakayala Chinnarajappa also went in favour of YSRCP.

Putting up a brave face, TDP chief N. Chandrababu Naidu advised party activists not to lose hope. “We will continue to fight for the people and we will emerge victorious in the future,’’ he said. In the last elections to the ULBs held in 2014, the TDP won five out of seven municipal corporations and the YSRCP, two. Of the 92 municipalities, TDP bagged 70, YSRC 18, Congress and CPI one each. 

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