Leader of Opposition in Andhra Pradesh legislative assembly and YSR Congress Party President, YS Jagan Mohan Reddy addressed a massive public gathering at Ichchapuram's old bus stand centre before wrapping up his padayatra in Srikakulam district. He thanked everyone who had supported his padayatra all through these 341 days. Here is a first-person narration of many of the points highlighted by YS Jagan in his scintillating speech:
"In the last 14 months, I had walked a distance of 3,468 km. I had synchronized my heartbeat with the heartbeat of the State. I never thought that the padayatra would turn out to be a massive success of this scale. It was the people of the State, the almighty and late Dr YSR's blessings which have led me to complete the padayatra with such resounding success. I was told that the padayatra distance crossed the aerial distance between Hyderabad and Dubai, and the distance between Kashmir and Kanyakumari.
In the last four years of Chandrababu Naidu rule, I was worried over issues like floods on one side and droughts on the other side. While TDP's corruption is ever-increasing in Chandrababu's rule, farmers are not given MSPs. While the State is suffering from increasing unemployment, Chandrababu's deception of the unemployed after promising to give unemployment allowance. Chandrababu cheated people by dividing them along caste lines.
I will share with you today some of the most disturbing things I had encountered with during the course of Praja Sankalpa Yatra:
In Anantapur district's Puttaparthi constituency, a farmer named Shivanna met me and said he had a loan of Rs 90,000 and cultivated groundnut crop. Shivanna said with Chandrababu' coming in to power come droughts in the State. During Chandrababu's tour of Anantapur district, when he was asked about drought relief, Chandrababu acted as if he did not know there was a drought.
Officials said rain guns would be used to supply water in Shivanna's farm. A pool of water was filled while Chandrababu posed for photos for media. Later, by evening, there was no water and rain guns disappeared from the farm.
Shivanna, in a public meeting announced that he had voted for Chandrababu the last time around. He said he wouldn't vote for TDP again.
While the farmers of the State are struggling to survive without input subsidies, MSPs, and deficit rainfall, Chandrababu is playing a drama called national politics. Agricultural productivity took a sharp decline in Chandrababu's rule. According to NABARD, average monthly farmer income of AP stands at the bottom in 28th position. Hence, farmers in the State are saying, "Ninnu Nammam Babu."
Farm loans worth Rs 1.30 lakh crore are pending in Chandrababu's rule. Cheating in the name of loan waivers continues with Chandrababu while the banks no longer issue zero interest loans.
Chandrababu turned out to be the captain of brokers after assuming power, to sell off the farm produce at 2-3 times the price in his Heritage stores.
In Yalamanchili constituency of Visakhpatnam district, women's groups were driven to the Courts after Chandrababu deceived them with loan waiver promise. The zero interest loans have been ignored by the Chandrababu government. Hence, the women are today saying, "Ninnu Nammam Babu."
Students, outsourcing employees, Gopalamitras, AYUSH employees, the unemployed and the midday meal workers are also saying "Ninnu Nammam Babu."
Four years after State bifurcation, not even a single job vacancy has been filled by Chandrababu government. It was said that there were over a lakh jobs vacant at the time of bifurcation.
Chandrababu boasts of bringing Rs 20,000 lakh crore investment and 4 lakh jobs while factories and industries across the State are being shut down.
In Nellore district's Udayagiri constituency, there was a poster with a child's picture on it. His father, Gopalanna, approached me and said that his child committed suicide with depression over Gopallanna's inability to pay engineering college fees. This incident had disturbed me like never before.
The Chandrababu government's irresponsibility in providing quality healthcare through Aarogyasri scheme is destroying lives of the poor. In Ichchapuram's Uddanam, thousands of people are suffering from kidney related diseases. They do not have a government hospital to go for treatment. A pension of meager Rs 2,500 is being given to the victims.
A senior citizen couple from Ponnuru in Srikakulam district were forced to approach the Courts for pensions. Atrocities of the Janma Bhoomi Committees are compelling the poor in the State to say "Ninnu Nammam Babu."
Natural resources like coal, sand and mud, lands of the poor and temples are also being looted in the State. With fear of loss few months before elections, Chandrababu is beginning to play new dramas in the name of schemes. Distressed farmers and deceived citizens are saying, "Ninnu Nammam Babu."
Abusing the democratic spirit in the country, Chandrababu played mastermind behind the defection of 23 MLAs from other parties. On the other side, in Telangana election campaign, Chandrababu asked the people to reject the TRS for indulging in defection of MLAs. After four years of romance with BJP, Chandrababu took a U-turn in his stance on the Special Category Status.
With the support of his yellow media, Chandrababu is resorting to Goebbelsian propaganda. We should be able to reject the leaders who do not stand by their word.
Navaratnas For AP:
The first stride towards development of AP would be to divide the current 13 districts into 25 districts. In every Village, a Village Secretariat would be formed to ensure grass-root percolation of government initiatives. 10 of the Village youth would be given jobs in the Secretariat.
- Farmer's assistance of Rs 12,500 per year per farmer's family, free 9-hours electricity during the day, zero interest farm loans, free bore-wells and crop insurance with a national calamity relief fund of Rs 4,000 crore. Standardisation of MSPs for crops before sale in markets would empower farmer community. Cold storage units and food processing units across constituencies would be arranged. Safeguarding the interests of Dairy farmers with increased milk prices. YSR Beema would provide a Rs 5 lakh insurance cover to the farmer's family. This would be the first-ever legislation. Completion of irrigation projects on a war-footing would be done.
My only intention is to serve the State after assuming power. I want to say to every YSRCP coordinator that the people of the State would only take Chandrababu's election funding and vote for YSRCP not to TDP. After having crisscrossed all over the State, I am saying with confidence that I am now aware of the public issues. I want to seek the support of all sections of society for the next three months in the lead up to the elections. We will chase Chandrababu's manipulations, unethical alliances and various other conspiracies and by God's grace, come to power. Thank you to all men and women, youth, senior citizens and children."