How Lokesh’s transformation is working positively for the TDP
From bearing humiliation online through trolling to goofing up publicly with language, TDP general secretary Nara Lokesh has gone through some of the worst days in his political career in the past 6 years. From being body-shamed to being called names and trolled ruthlessly, Nara Lokesh was also termed as “Andhra Pappu” by YSRCP propagandists.
Looks like all that taught him a great deal. From learning lessons on public etiquette to a complete image makeover, Lokesh seems to have undergone an immense transformation. From slimming down and looking dapper to improvising his language and public speaking skills, he seems to be working on revamping his image to that of a trustworthy leader.
Currently, the Telugu Desam Party is going through a tough and rough phase in Andhra Pradesh. From facing a tough opposition to the ruling party even resorting to violence against TDP cadre and karyakartas, the TDP high command is struggling to keep its flock together. At such a challenging phase, it is difficult to revitalise its cadre and rework its strategies to reconnect with ground-level workers.
Cycle Yatra to revive party
Focussing on this, the TDP has decided to take up a Cycle Yatra which will be spearheaded by Nara Lokesh. Through this Yatra, a fitter Lokesh is keen on touching upon every nook and corner of the state and meeting people who are obviously unhappy with the current government in Andhra Pradesh.
The yatra is expected to take off in early 2022. It is heard that the yatra’s rootmap is designed in such a way that it would cover as many Assembly constituencies as possible, across Andhra Pradesh. Likely to start from Srikakulam’s Ichapuram, the yatra is going to cover 30 kms per day and is expected to end in Kadapa district. For this, sources said Lokesh needed to be fit and reflect the active and agile attitude that was much needed for TDP to survive in the state.
Time to take over the mantle?
As someone who has worked with dedication on his image makeover, he now plans to take up this yatra which is expected to garner the much-needed mass image for him among the state’s citizens. This, he believes, will also help him get a hold on the party and push it to win in the next Assembly election in 2024 if everything works out as the TDP has planned.
In such a situation where TDP’s litmus test will most likely be a “do or die” situation in 2024 assembly elections, even TDP chief N. Chandrababu Naidu is planning a “Bus Yatra” at a later stage to revive the cadre. While the father-son duo seem to be working hard, it is clear that the time has come for Lokesh to strive hard to prove his mettle and take over the mantle.
TEJASWINI PAGADALA is an independent communications consultant. She has previously worked with the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister’s Office as the Communications Officer where she has written English speeches for the CM, managed English media communication from the CMO and handled social media accounts of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and the Government.