Sharmila to contest from Vijayawada or Vizag?

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Vijayawada: The ’missile’ in YSRCP chief Y S Jaganmohan Reddy’s arsenal, Sharmila, will in all probability, be the party candidate for the Vijayawada Lok Sabha constituency.

After she opened up her mind at the party’s second plenary in Idupulapaya on February 2, rumor mills are working overtime spreading news that she is poised for her electoral debut in the politically vibrant constituency, this time round. Interestingly, her political entry was the talk of the town when her record walkathon passed through the streets here during the ‘Maro Praja Prasthanam’ yatra.

Some leaders had invited Sharmila to contest for the Vijayawada Lok Sabha seat in the next elections. Women leaders too had endorsed the proposal and requested her to come here. However, she had just smiled and chose to remain silent.

However, after Jaganmohan Reddy was out of jail on bail, the missile had gone back into the arsenal and the proposal too subsided. With Sharmila appearing at the plenary, the issue came up as fodder for the rumor mills. Party leaders who are close to the YSR family feel that she would be the best candidate to contest from the city; she would win the seat hands down, whoever be in the fray from the Congress and Telugu Desam.

Former vice-chairperson of Krishna Zilla Parishad Tatineni Padmavathi, ex-City mayor Tadi Sakunthala, and party candidate for Pamarru, Uppuleti Kalpana, reportedly sent feelers to Jaganmohan Reddy to nominate Sharmila for the City Lok Sabha seat. Sources said that several City Christian groups have favoured her candidature. When Sharmila and her husband and evangelist Bro. Anil Kumar were here last week, Christian leaders suggested that she be fielded from here.

Meanwhile, YSRCP sources said party leaders from Visakhapatnam have also invited Sharmila to contest from there. They reportedly sent a proposal inviting her to the port city and gave a detailed account of her merits. However, it is said that Sharmila is keen on contesting from Vijayawada.

Party leaders say Vijayawada would be the safest place for her, as against Visakhapatnam or any other constituency. In Visakhapatnam, she would have to face sitting MP and Union Minister Daggubati Purandeswari, while it would be a cakewalk for her in Vijayawada. When contacted, YSRCP City president and former legislator, Jaleel Khan, said he was not aware of such proposal.

“There is no official proposal in the party; but people are talking about it. You know it all.

The City is political capital of the State and people are politically active here. So they talk about any proposal,” Jaleel Khan said, but did not rule out the possibility of the firebrand trying her luck here in the next elections.