Congress names candidates for 5 LS, 114 Assembly seats in Andhra

Amaravati, April 2 (IANS) Former Union Ministers Pallam Raju and J.D. Seelam will contest the Lok Sabha elections from Kakinada and Bapatla (SC) seats, respectively, in Andhra Pradesh.

Pallam Rahu and J.D. Seelam were among the five candidates announced by the Central Election Committee of the Congress on Tuesday for next month’s polls.

Elections to the 175 Assembly and 25 Lok Sabha seats in Andhra Pradesh will be held simultaneously on May 13.

State Congress chief Y.S. Sharmila Reddy will contest from Kadapa, where her cousin Y.S. Avinash Reddy is seeking re-election for a third term on a YSR Congress Party ticket.

Congress Working Committee (CWC) special invitee Gidugu Rudraraju will contest from the Rajamahendravaram Lok Sabha constituency, while P.G. Rampullaiah Yadav has been fielded from Kurnool.

Pallam Raju, who was elected from Kakinada in 1989, 2004, and 2009, served as the Union Minister of State for Defence from 2006 to 2012, and as the Union HRD Minister in the UPA I and UPA II governments.

J.D. Seelam, who was the Union Minister of State for Finance between 2013 and 2014 in the Manmohan Singh-led government, will contest from Bapatla, a seat reserved for Scheduled Castes.

The Congress also announced the names of 114 candidates for the Assembly elections in Andhra Pradesh.

The Congress has been without an MLA or MP in Andhra Pradesh for the last 10 years. The party was wiped out in 2014 due to the public anger over the bifurcation of combined Andhra Pradesh to create the Telangana state. There was no change in its fortunes in 2019, as the party once again drew a blank in simultaneous polls.

In January, the Congress appointed Sharmila Reddy, the sister of Chief Minister and YSR Congress Party President Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy, as the President of the party’s state unit.

Sharmila, who is the daughter of Congress leader and former Chief Minister late Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, has been entrusted with the task of reviving the party in the state.

She will be making her electoral debut from the Kadapa Lok Sabha seat, which the YSR family has been representing without a break since 1989.

--IANS

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