Entry Into Politics

Nara Chandrababu Naidu shot into political limelight in 1977. In that year, the Krishna river delta, known as Diviseema, witnessed devastating floods and cyclone that killed many people and destroyed livelihoods of many more. Mr.Naidu as Chandragiri Block Youth Secretary congregated the youth and provided support to the Diviseema flood victims.

Around the same time the MLC elections was approaching and the Teachers Union along with the political parties participated actively in it. Mr.Naidu as a college graduate from his constituency and as a student leader was in the fray for the MLC election, the post which is for duration of six years.

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Mr.Naidu was unknown to many. He was merely a local face. With the support of the student unions he was game for the election, which created dissent within many senior local party workers. They made attempts to move him away from the scene on the basis that he was under aged and not qualified to contest. He withdrew his nomination. However this helped him indirectly, he was able to contest the Assembly elections in 1978.

It was also a little later that his future father-in-law and matinee idol Sri Nandamuri Taraka Rama Rao (NTR) established the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), heralding a new chapter in the state’s politics.

The State Congress leadership dramatically and suddenly underwent a change. After its defeat in the 1977 General Elections, there was a split in Congress again. Indira Gandhi was no more in power. Janata Party was at the helm and the state was headed by Jalagam Vengal Rao. National Congress Party leader was Kasu Brahmananda Reddy. The defeat in the election spoilt things for him and Indira Gandhi, he ostracised her from the Party. Jalagam Vengal Rao remained in the Reddy Congress and Cong (I) was headed by P.V.Narasimha Rao in the State.

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M. Chenna Reddy, then Governor of Uttar Pradesh, after seeing the state politics aimed the chief minister’s post in Andhra, during the critical political scene. After a role conflict Chenna Reddy decided join Congress (I). His entrance nullified PV and became an important political figure in State politics.

All the state Congress leaders from MLAs, MPs to local leaders preferred to remain in Reddy Congress. The main reason was Jalagam Vengal Rao’s good governance. With this change in scenario, Congress (I) was left with no members. There was a dearth of leaders in it and that paved way for a requirement of a new leader in Cong (I). When there was a void in State Cong politics and Mr.Naidu entered the political scene as a youth leader from Chandragiri and after that there was no looking back from him.