Even as Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu visited Delhi on Tuesday to meet Congress chief Rahul Gandhi and other leaders who could be part of an anti-BJP front, his political rival in the state, YSR Congress leader Jaganmohan Reddy, is concluding what is being called the longest foot march (Praja Sankalpa Padyatra) by a political leader in the country.
The padyatra began at Idupulapaya in Kadala district, the final resting place of Jaganmohan Reddy’s father, YS Rajasekhara Reddy, on November 6, 2017 and will conclude on Wednesday at Ichchapuram in Srikakulam district.
Over 429 days, Jaganmohan Reddy – leader of opposition in the Andhra Pradesh Assembly – has covered 3,648 kilometres, covering all 13 districts and 134 out of 175 assembly constituencies in the state.
At the end of over 340 days of walking, Jaganmohan Reddy, 45, will unveil a pylon and address a public meeting.
Party leaders and workers from all districts have been mobilised for this meeting at the culmination of the padyatra.
Jaganmohan Reddy is said to have met and interacted with over two crore people and listened to all segments of the population, making them promises about what he would do for them if they elect him to power.
The YSR Congress chief will fly to Visakhapatam and take a flight to Tirupati in the evening. He is expected to climb Tirumala on foot for a visit to Lord Balaji. Jaganmohan Reddy is a practicing Christian but his father and he have often times visited the temple.
Through the padyatra, Jaganmohan Reddy has sought to highlight the alleged failings of Telugu Desam Party president Chandrababu Naidu, saying he did not fight for special category status for Andhra Pradesh and did not act on farmer loan waiver.
Jaganmohan Reddy says unlike promises made before the 2014 elections, there is no job for every household, no unemployment allowance, no houses for the poor or security for women.
In 2004, Jaganmohan’s father had become chief minister of the then united Andhra Pradesh after a padyatra across the state, interacting mainly with farmers.
In 2013, Chandrababu Naidu too completed a 2800-km foot march seeking to become the state Chief Minister again. His wish came true in 2014.