'Venkaiah should have been the President,' a village celebrates Naidu's nomination
The NDA has chosen Venkaiah Naidu as its Vice President nominee but everyone in Chavatapalem village in Nellore believes that he deserves to be the President of India.
The small village is full of close and distant relatives of Venkaiah Naidu and the celebrations have not ended ever since he was nominated for the coveted post.
"Everybody is happy and excited. Why wouldn't we be? It is an honour. But honestly, he should have been the nominee for President of India, Vice President may just be a smaller post for him," quipped Dr Penchalaiah, Venkaiah Naidu's cousin. While he is as excited as the rest of the village, he also acknowledges that people may have loved to see him continue as a minister.
"It is a moment of pride for us but people in the village feel that he could have continued to do more good as a minister. Had he been a minister, he would have done much more for Nellore as a whole but now it may not be possible. Development of Nellore may be hampered," he added. The village, now renamed Sriramapuram, has seen Venkaiah Naidu grow as a leader. From Student leader to an MLA. The people, mostly relatives, have witnessed him becoming an MP, a union minister and now the Vice Presidential candidate.
People of the village recall Venkaiah Naidu's 'Nellore next', a program that he launched to develop the district. "With Nellore next, he visited villages at least every two months. He spoke to the people about the various projects and that progress that they have achieved. Now, he may not visit us as often. People will miss him," Dr Penchalaiah added.
As someone who has known Venkaiah Naidu from his student leader days, Dr Penchaiah recalls how Naidu was the 'go to man' even in college. "We studied in the same institute, albeit he was in college and I was in school. Even as a student, whenever there were problems plaguing the student community, he would lead. Everybody knew him, spoke to him and knew he would highlight the issue," he recalled. The village elders recall how, despite losing parents at a young age, Venkaiah Naidu rose through the ranks of the BJP.
The people of Sriramapuram have no hesitation in crediting the two bypass roads in Nellore to Venkaiah Naidu's efforts. Apart from roads, sanitation, Venkaiah Naidu has ensured flyovers, bridges as well as the development of Nellore railway station. While Venkaiah Naidu's relatives back home are celebrating his nomination, they are also unhappy that their son may not come visiting as often as he had.