Power play: Andhra Pradesh BJP unit eyes Union Cabinet berth

The first choice would be state BJP president D Purandeswari, who won from Rajamahendravaram Lok Sabha constituency.

ByPTI

Published Jun 07, 2024 | 5:35 PMUpdatedJun 07, 2024 | 7:30 PM

BJP supporters with Modi cut out in Andhra Pradesh

Buoyed by the outcome of the recent Assembly and Lok Sabha polls, Andhra Pradesh BJP unit is seeking at least one Cabinet berth at the Centre, amid reports that there will be “ample” representation from the state.

BJP sources said the state unit has already sent a message to the top brass through Shiv Prakash, national joint general secretary of the saffron party, requesting a cabinet berth for at least one Lok Sabha member of the party from the state if possible.

“This is an opportune time to expand the party in Andhra Pradesh and send a message to the masses that BJP is serious about the state. A request has been sent to the senior leadership of the party,” the BJP sources told PTI.

The first choice would be State BJP President D Purandeswari who won from Rajamahendravaram Lok Sabha constituency by a margin of nearly 2.40 lakh votes, defeating her nearest rival G Srinivas of YSR Congress, they said.

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Improved vote share

The saffron party performed impressively in the state by improving its vote share to 11.28 percent in the recent polls, winning three Lok Sabha and eight Assembly seats, from a minuscule less-than-one per cent in 2019.

As part of a seat-sharing deal among NDA partners, the TDP contested 144 Assembly and 17 Lok Sabha constituencies while BJP put up candidates in six Lok Sabha and 10 Assembly seats in Andhra Pradesh. Jana Sena contested two Lok Sabha and 21 Assembly seats.

The TDP won 135 seats in the Assembly polls. Its allies BJP and Janasena got 8 seats and 21 seats respectively. In the LS polls, the TDP won 16 seats, BJP three and Janasena two seats.

The BJP had two Lok Sabha members between 2014 and 2019 —Kambhampati Hari Babu (Visakhapatnam) and Gokaraju Ganga Raju (Narsapuram)— and none during 2019-24.

YSRCP leaders to BJP

The party also hopes that some leaders from the YSR Congress party, which was routed in the Assembly polls, may opt to join the saffron party as they could not align with TDP.

During the recently concluded Assembly and Lok Sabha polls, the party fielded several leaders who switched over to it, causing heartburn among old-timers.

According to political observers, by giving party tickets to new entrants, the BJP was trying to send a message or signal to disgruntled leaders of other parties that it would generously offer seats to contest polls to turncoats.

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