Vijayawada- The political landscape in Andhra Pradesh heats up ahead of the upcoming Assembly elections, all eyes are firmly fixed on the Gudivada constituency in Krishna district. The spotlight shines brightly on four-time MLA and former minister, Kodali Sri Venkateswara Rao, popularly known as Kodali Nani, as he gears up to contest once again from this crucial constituency.
A seasoned politician, Kodali Nani’s political journey has seen him traverse through different parties. Starting his political career with the TDP, he secured victories in 2004 and 2009. Later, he made a pivotal shift to the YSRCP, clinching victories in 2014 and 2019. However, his stronghold over Gudivada faces a formidable challenge this time around.
The TDP has nominated Venigandla Ramu, who has been diligently engaging with the electorate since his appointment as the in-charge of Gudivada in December 2023. Ramu’s efforts have focused on building rapport with the diverse voter base of the constituency, which comprises significant numbers of Backward Classes, Kapus, Kammas, Muslims, and Dalits.
With Gudivada boasting both urban and rural demographics, the preference for a candidate over party lines becomes pronounced. Despite Kodali Nani’s track record of victories, the looming anti-incumbency sentiment against the ruling YSRCP could sway the tide against him. Additionally, his vocal criticism of TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu may alienate Kamma voters, a significant segment of the electorate.
However, Kodali Nani’s personal rapport with the party cadre and constituents, coupled with his successful track record of securing developmental funds for the constituency, might serve as a lifeline in this challenging political terrain.
The potential alliance between the BJP and the TDP-Jana Sena coalition could further complicate the electoral dynamics, especially if it manages to garner the support of Kapu and Kamma voters, traditionally inclined towards the TDP.
Gudivada has historically been a TDP stronghold since its inception in 1983. Nevertheless, recent electoral defeats post-Kodali Nani’s departure underline the electorate’s inclination towards individual candidates over party affiliations.
The battle for Gudivada is expected to be keenly contested, with the TDP candidate, Venigandla Ramu, strategizing meticulously to unseat Kodali Nani. Conversely, Kodali Nani, drawing from his extensive political experience spanning over two decades, remains resolute in his determination to emerge victorious once again.
In the previous elections, Kodali Nani triumphed over formidable opponents, defeating Raavi Venkateswara Rao in 2014 and Devineni Avinash in 2019, the latter now contesting from Vijayawada East under the YSRCP banner.
As the political fervor intensifies and campaigning gains momentum, the outcome of the Gudivada Assembly constituency remains uncertain, promising an electrifying showdown come election day.