Hyderabad: With the Supreme Court refusing to grant bail to YSR Congress party leader YS Jaganmohan Reddy in the illegal assets case, his sister Sharmila has decided to embark on a 'padyatra' to keep the party afloat. Sharmila will launch the 'padyatra' from her father YS Rajasekhara Reddy's grave at Idupulapaya in Kadapa district on October 18.
Party's honorary president YS Vijayalakshmi told reporters on Thursday the 'padyatra' was aimed at conveying her son's message to people that he was unable to meet them as a conspiracy by Congress and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) was keeping him in jail. With the 3000-km 'padyatra', the party wants to expose the "failure" of Congress government on all fronts and also to counter TDP, whose chief N Chandrababu Naidu is currently on a similar 'padyatra'.
Sharmila plans to cover all 23 districts of the state and her walkathon will conclude at Itchapuram in Srikakulam district. During the yatra, she would assure people that the golden rule of her late father would come back in the state. Vijayalakhsmi and Jagan's wife Bharati would also join Sharmila in 'padyatra'. They also met Jagan in Chanchalguda Jail on Thursday and discussed 'padyatra' plans.
"Jagan told me that in his absence the party should remain among people. I wanted to undertake padyatra but I am unable to do it because of arthritis," Vijayalakshmi said. Jagan was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in May this year when he was busy campaigning for the party in the by-elections.
Later, his mother and sister continued the campaign. Sharmila, wife of evangelist Anil Kumar, impressed the crowds with her speeches. She, however, does not hold any post in the party. If Sharmila completes the 'padyatra', it will be the longest one in the state.
Naidu, who embarked on 117-day long walkathon on Oct 2, plans to cover 2,320 km. He thus wanted to break the record of his arch rival Y S. Rajasekhara Reddy, who had walked 1,500 km across the state in 2003, meeting people, especially farmers.