It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say that Leader of Opposition in Andhra Pradesh Assembly and YSR Congress Party Chief YS Jagan Mohan Reddy's mass outreach program Praja Sankalpa Yatra, which covered a distance of 3,648 km over a span of 341 days, is one of its kind. With an unprecedented public turnout in all places across the State, the people's leader directly interactedwith 1.25 crore people.
After having set out on 6 November, 2018 from YSR Ghat in Idupulapaya, the padayatra is all set to come to a successful conclusion at Ichchapuram in Srikakulam district. After having crisscrossed 2,516 villages in 231 Mandal headquarters, 54 Municipalities and eight cities across 134 constituencies in the State, YS Jagan would on Wednesday have addressed 124 public meetings. A minimum of 30,000 and maximum of 50,000 people have attended YS Jagan's public meetings in small towns while in cities crowds between 60,000 and 1 lakhattended the YSRCP chief's public meetings. Also, YS Jagan met scores of people in the course of his walkathon while listening patiently to the woes of farmers, women, students and the unemployed. With the scale of padayatra that he carried out, YS Jagan would go down in the history books for influencing crores of people directly and indirectly.
With the interactive meetings and representations from several associations, YS Jagan had an opportunity to have access to first-hand information on public issues in the ground. Thousands of people came to him in a seemingly never-ending stream wherever he went, complaining to him on the atrocities, irregularities and corrupt practices of the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) government. Crores of Telugu people have watched YS Jagan's historic padayatra through television and social media.
While the youth and children competed among themselves to get a selfie with their favourite leader, senior citizens, women, students, employees, representatives of social groups, labourers and many others met YS Jagan during the course of padayatra. Many a time, daily wage labourers and farmers ran across to see the YSRCP Chief when he visited their Villages. In small towns and cities, businessmen, students, employees and households were excited to meet the people's leader. People trying to get a glance of YS Jagan from terraces was a common sight.
The Kanakadurga Flyover in Vijayawada and the Rajahmundry Road Cum Railway Bridge were filled with a virtual of sea of humanity as YS Jagan supporters packed every possible inch of space, while the public meeting in Kancharapalem of Visakhapatnam district remained the highlight of the padayatra. While lending a patient ear to the woes of local people, YS Jagan instilled hope among the masses with his comprehensive welfare plan package 'Navaratnas', fight for Special Category Status (SCS) and a clear plan to protect employees from CPS and the unemployed with a Mega DSC. He promised to form Corporations for various caste groups and a special corpus fund of Rs 10,000 crore for Kapu community. Sending a proposal to the Centre for reservation to Kapus was another announcement he made during his padayatra in East Godavari district.
YS Jagan received lakhs of complaints on the TDP's atrocities in providing pensions and sanctioning houses. It has been found that the TDP Janma Bhoomi Committees have become synonymous with village-level corruption. Land encroachments, sand mafia, illegal mining and other irregularities have been brought to YS Jagan's attention. Government employees, teachers and labourers have urged the Leader of the Opposition to save them from the TDP's autocratic rule. In subsequent public meetings, YS Jagan promised to solve local issues while furthering the ease of administration in village level with the introduction of Village Secretariats. In his explosive speeches during the course of padayatra, he had recalled the services of late Chief Minister Dr YS Rajasekhara Reddy while stating the record number of houses he had built for the poor.
Compensation for Titli victims and restoration of government Dairies and sugar factories were also among YS Jagan's promises.
Fight For SCS, The Motto Of Padayatra:
YS Jagan's padayatra created tremors of fear among national parties BJP and the Congress while directly affecting the TDP in the State. By turning the Special Category Status into a political agenda, YSRCP could sow the seeds of hope among the distressed people. After having secured a win in the previous elections with the SCS promise, Chandrababu mortgaged the State's interests to the Centre owing to his involvement in the note for vote case. With his consistent effort to pressurise the Centre and keeping the SCS fight alive, YS Jagan brought the fight for SCS into the centrestage during padayatra.
Not only did YS Jagan make the YSRCP MPs resign from their posts, he compelled Chandrababu to take a U-turn on the demand for SCS. Following the resignation of YSRCP MPs, Chandrababu was forced to withdraw from the NDA.
Nation stunned with murder attempt on YS Jagan:
When the news of the attack on YS Jagan brokeout, the nation was left stunned with utter shock and despair. His left shoulder was severely injured in the attack in which a restaurant worker stabbed the people's leader with s sharp knife inside the VIP lounge of Visakhapatnam airporton October 25, 2018. Within hours from the attack, AP DGP RP Thakur and CM Chandrababu tried to play down the murder attempt saying the attacker did so with an intent to gain publicity. After YSRCP's prolonged fight in the Courts, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) took cognisance of the the matter and began the probe. YS Jagan after resting for a few days, was soon back on his Praja Sankalpa Yatra. He won the hearts of the citizens of AP with his dignified reaction and his composed manner, as he had throughout his long, arduous Padayatra.
Also Read: YS Jagan Scripts A New Page In AP History