Migration of Muslim minority leaders into TDP likely to tilt balance in Kadapa

Minority leaders from Kadapa formally being inducted into the TDP in the presence of party president N. Chandrababu Naidu recently.

The recent induction of influential leaders belonging to the Muslim minority community into the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) is likely to tilt the balance in its favour in Kadapa Assembly constituency.

The Muslim vote bank holds considerable sway in Kadapa city. TDP’s S.A. Khaleel Basha won in 1994 and 1999, while Congress party’s Syed Mohammad Ahmedullah won in 2004 and 2009. YSR Congress Party’s candidate and the current Deputy Chief Minister Amzath Basha Shaik Bepari won in 2014 and 2019, defeating his nearest rival Nawabjan Ameer Babu, who contested on a TDP ticket, with a margin of 54794 votes in the 2019 elections.

Since then, Mr. Ameer Babu has been leaving no stone unturned to get back into the reckoning. Last year, he staged several demonstrations against the State government and fought for restoration of burial sites belonging to the Muslim community, which were marked for demolition by the municipal corporation for road widening.

The announcement of R. Madhavi Reddy, wife of TDP Polit Bureau member and district convener R. Sreenivasa Reddy, as the new district convener was a game-changer. There is a sense of elation among the party cadre at the grassroots, as there was no aspirant among non-Muslims for decades. Mr. Ameer Babu has also been actively working to woo the minority community towards the TDP.

Several influential leaders like Mohd. Naveed’s brother Mohd. Feroz, Lion Mansoor Khan and Afsar Khan joined the party in the presence of TDP chief N. Chandrababu Naidu in Hyderabad on Thursday, and returned to the city on Friday. Interestingly, most of them were sailing with the YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) till recently and their migration reportedly came as a shock to the ruling party.

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