Jagan alone may spoil Pranab's dream to become President

Written by: Nairita Das

YS Jaganmohan Reddy, the richest Member of Parliament (MP) of India, is currently lodged in the Chanchalguda jail in Hyderabad over some corruption cases. Despite his current situation, people will not raise any question about his power and strength.

Pranab Mukherjee and Jaganmohan Reddy

Through the land-slide victory in the recently held by-poll election in Andhra Pradesh, the young MP of Kadapa has proved his ability and popularity among the aam-aadmi (common man).

It seems that Jagan's stars are with him and with this he may turn stones to gold with a single touch. In this present scenario, Pranab Mukherjee should be very cautious about his moves ahead of the crucial presidential election which will be held on Jul 19. A single nod from Jagan to PA Sangma may spoil all dreams of the outgoing Finance Minister to become the President of India.

PA Sangma, the sole candidate who has been continuing his campaigning to gain support from various political parties of the country, has already approached Jagan seeking his support during the secret-ballot. Though he was barred from entering the Chanchalguda jail premises, the jail authorities could not foil Sangma's enthusiasm to keep up the pace of his campaigning.

When he was denied permission to meet Jagan and was asked to come back during visiting hours, Sangma rushed to meet the former's mother YS Vijaya Lakshmi who is the honorary president of YSR Congress Party. After their meeting at Jagan's residence, the party sources informed that Jagan and his 17 MLAs may back Sangma's candidature and thus Sangma may get the advantage of sour relationship between the Congress and YSR congress.

After the death of former Andhra CM YS Rajasekhara Reddy, his son Jagan split up with Congress following the spat where the party refused to make Jagan the CM of the state.

Jagan formed his own party - YSR Congress and within months of its formation it gained much popularity among the Andhra people. Jagan's family members including his mother and wife have also claimed that Jagan would be the Andhra Pradesh CM in 2014.

Jagan's YSR Congress, which is a toddler in comparison to other influential regional parties, surprised all with its performance. The party won 15 out of 18 assembly seats and one Lok Sabha (Nellore) seat. Congress, Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and many other parties were shocked by the results.

For the first time in the past 11 years, Jagan's party has emerged as an alternative to the TRS in its stronghold Telangana region. Many people believe that Congress, TRS and others might not have come across such a force as potent as Jaganmohan Reddy.

Jagan's popularity is not restricted only within the boundaries of Andhra Pradesh. Unlike many other politicos, who belong to some regional parties in different states of the country, Jagan with his Odarpu yatra (Consoling journey) managed to touch the hearts of people across the nation.

Now when it comes on the decision of supporting Sangma's candidature for the upcoming presidential poll, many parties, who have not taken any concrete decisions yet, might get influenced by Jagan if the YSR Congress chief decide to stand with Sangma in his (Sangma's) fight against Pranab Mukherjee - the candidate of the UPA minus Trinamool Congress.

Mamata Banerjee - the Trinamool Congress supremo, whose earlier efforts to gain support for APJ Abdul Kalam went in vain, has not declared her decision yet. However, there are possibilities that Mamata, who is also known as the game-changer, may take another surprising turn after being influenced by Jagan.

Sangma met Mamata Banerjee on Jun 26, 2012 and sought support for his candidature. Now, it seems that Sangma, who is currently backed by AIADMK chief and Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa, Orissa CM Naveen Patnaik and BJP along with many other NDA allies, may defeat Pranab Mukherjee in the race for Raisina Hill if Jagan and Mamata declare their decisions to back Sangma.

The former NCP leader, who initially did not get any support from major political party leaders, has gradually started garnering support from many parties. His daughter and one of the youngest Union ministers Agatha Sangma claimed that it would be a "welcome gesture" if tribal MPs and MLAs voted for her father in the Jul 19 Presidential election. If that happens, Sangma will pose a serious threat to Pranab's chances.

"Soon I will not be a political entity," Pranab Mukherjee remarked hours before he resigns as Finance Minister but it seems that he can not leave politics behind so easily. If sources are to be believed, Pranab Mukherjee may face lot more political hurdles before he ends his journey as a politician.

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