Election Strategist Prashanth Kishore enters South India, to work with Jagan Reddy! Will he make difference to YSR?

Election strategist Prashant Kishor, who had secured huge victories for Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the 2014 general elections, Nitish Kumar in Bihar Assembly election 2015, and Captain Amarinder Singh’s campaign in Punjab, is set to continue his electoral magic in South India.

YSR Congress president and Opposition leader in Andhra Pradesh Y S Jaganmohan Reddy has held a meeting with party leaders in which he announced Prashanth Kishor as the YSR Congress’ special advisor.

Kishor will be working with Reddy to design a successful campaign for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh to secure their mandate in Andhra Pradesh and defeat the BJP.

Having failed to gain power in AP in the 2014 elections soon after the bifurcation of undivided AP, the YSR Congress is determined to wrest power in 2019 mission. Keeping that in mind, Y S Jaganmohan Reddy has hired popular political strategist Prashant Kishor to work out strategies for the party and help it win the next assembly elections.

It was Narendra Modi who had turned Prashant Kishore into a smart election consultant. Modi had asked him to help the rural health projects of Gujarat and later asked him to handle the election campaign. Modi’s thumping majority, Nithish Kumar’s Bihar assembly victory, and these two election results made Prashant Kishore a successful strategist and he became overnight hero.

The career graph of this master election strategist was at its peak. But his Congress-SP alliance disaster was a blot on his impressive resume.

Prashant Kishore runs a team under the name of Indian Political Action Committee (IPAC) which has over 100 members who work day and night to formulate a comprehensive action plan.

Being part of Jagan Reddy (YSR Congress) team itself is a big challenge for Prashanth Kishore. Unlike the other leaders Kishore and his organisation I-PAC (Indian Political Action Committee) worked with, Jagan reddy’s profile makes difference. There are multiple ED and CBI cases against him; Jagan is seen as a corrupt leader.

Main Cases and Allegations lists in his profile:

The allegations against Jagan Reddy relate to the period 2004-2009 suggest that Jagan Reddy, in criminal conspiracy with others, got allotted a mining lease to Bharathi Cement Corporation Private Limited illegally, and received bribes from various persons/companies in the guise of investments in his group companies as ‘quid pro quo’ for undue favours granted to them by the Andhra Pradesh government when Jagan’s father YS Rajasekhara Reddy was the Chief Minister.

The CBI has filed 11 chargesheets against Jagan, senior government officials, and businessmen from Andhra in the ‘quid pro quo’ investment case.

The ED’s zonal office in Hyderabad has said that it has registered a criminal case against Jaganmohan Reddy and others under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) based on a chargesheet filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

The ED said its investigations revealed that Jaganmohan Reddy laundered the proceeds of crime through his group companies Sandur Power, Classic Realty, Silicon Builders, Saraswati Power and Industries and 10 other companies in the form of investments, purchase of movable and immovable properties and third party payments etc.

The ED has already attached assets worth over Rs 1,000 crore in the overall PMLA cases.

In addition to the CBI and the ED, Jagan has also been probed by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) and the Indian Revenue Service (IRS).

Jagan Reddy was arrested in May 2012, spent 16 months in jail before he was released on bail in 2013.

But I-PAC, however, is confident that they will be able to work with Jagan’s ‘positive attributes’.

However, Jagan reddy and his YSR Congress are expecting to improve party performance and secure huge victory in the coming election with the help of Prashanth Kishor and his “expertise” team I-PAC.

Anusha Shetty