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Unanimous Polls: Jagan To Follow KCR Strategy!

Unanimous Polls: Jagan To Follow KCR Strategy!

Having failed to win the legal battle with state election commission headed by Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar in preventing the conduct of gram panchayat elections, the ruling YSRC in Andhra Pradesh headed by CM Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy has launched a counter-strategy to grab the maximum number of gram panchayats unanimously without any elections.

In this, Jagan wants to follow the strategy of his Telangana counterpart K Chandrasekhar Rao in the gram panchayat elections in Telangana, who used money power to capture as many gram panchayats as possible.

In the run-up to the gram panchayat in Telangana, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi government encouraged ‘unanimous elections’ by offering the carrot of hefty cash incentives to the gram panchayats which elect their members and sarpanches unanimously.

The cash grant ranged from Rs 10 lakh for those with a population less than 15,000 to Rs 25 lakh for those with a population more than 15,000.

Besides, at several places, the local TRS leaders announced additional cash incentives unofficially for the unanimously-elected gram panchayats. 

As a result, there were large-scale ‘auctions’ of the sarpanch posts in many gram panchayats across the State. According to official figures, at least 16-20 per cent of the posts in gram panchayats were auctioned.

Now, Jagan has decided to follow the same strategy by announcing enhancement of cash incentives to the gram panchayats where there are unanimous elections.

The enhanced amount ranges from Rs 5 lakh to the gram panchayats with a population less than 2,000 to Rs 20 lakh for gram panchayats with more than 10,000 people.

“This is to prevent unnecessary election expenditure, conflicts and fights in the gram panchayats. It will also encourage peace, harmony and development,” said panchayat raj minister Peddireddy Ramachandra Reddy.

In fact, this is not a new practice in the state but was introduced by then Chandrababu Naidu government in the united AP in 2001 itself.

Only thing is that the cash incentive has gone up from a maximum of Rs 50,000 to Rs 20 lakh now. Similar practice is being followed in other states as well.

But Jagan is likely to go a step further and follow KCR strategy of giving additional incentive in the name of unanimous elections.

If his party leaders can buy the local leaders with bigger money and win the posts in “auction,” then YSRC can grab the maximum number of gram panchayats!

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Tags: CM Jagan CM KCR