Cong Will Put Up Good Show in By-Polls: AP CM
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Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy today expressed confidence that Congress party would put up a good show in next month's by-polls to one Lok Sabha and 18 assembly seats.

"Our endeavour is to win the one Lok Sabha and the 18 assembly segments," he told reporters in Visakhapatnam.

He would be campaigning in Srikakulam, East and West Godavari districts for three days in support of the party candidates.

Congress and particularly Reddy are facing an acid test in the by-polls and will take on main opposition Telugu Desam and Kadapa MP Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy's YSR Congress.

Having drawn a blank in the by-polls held for seven assembly seats recently, one more round of by-polls for the lone Lok Sabha and 18 assembly seats will be a crucial test for Congress.

Meanwhile, asked about the comments made by Health Minister D L Ravindra Reddy that the Chief Minister appeared to have had a tacit understanding with Jagan, Kiran Kumar Reddy said: "He (Ravindra Reddy) does not have any work and you (media) don't have any work".

Ravindra Reddy is known to be a critic of the Chief Minister and his latest attack on him drew flak from other party leaders as well.

Given that the Chief Minister had never made any critical remarks against Jagan, Ravindra Reddy had claimed that the chief minister appeared to be having a tacit understanding with the Kadapa MP.

Jagan and Telugu Desam Chief N Chandrababu Naidu have already been into thick of the campaigning having toured several districts over the last one month.

By-polls are necessitated for 16 of the 18 assembly seats as the sitting Congress MLAs were disqualified by Speaker as they switched loyalty to Jagan, while another sitting member resigned in support of the Kadapa MP. Chiranjeevi quit as MLA following his election to Rajya Sabha. The bye-election is necessitated in Nellore as the sitting Congress MP also resigned in support of Jagan.

Polling for the one Lok Sabha (Nellore) and 18 assembly constituencies will be held on June 12 while counting is scheduled for June 15.

Meanwhile, state Primary Education Minister S Sailajanath and Congress Chief Whip Gandra Venkata Ramana Reddy dismissed the allegations of Jagan that welfare schemes launched by his father (late Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy) were not being implemented properly.

Jagan and the YSRC leaders should stop making baseless allegations, they said.

Appreciating the Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy's initiative to ink a pact with neighbouring Maharashtra on constructing an irrigation project Pranahita river for the benefit of both the states, Sailajanath said the project is a boon for Telangana region.

Meanwhile, the Chief Minister said the government would try to reach similar agreements with neighbouring Orissa and Chattisgarh on multi-purpose Polavaram irrigation project which has been the demand of coastal Andhra districts since several decades.

The agreements would benefit AP and also the neighbouring states, the Chief Minister said.

Meanwhile, Telugu Desam president N Chandrababu Naidu, who continued his campaign in the temple town of Tirupati, hit out at YSR Congress leaders.

He alleged that the YSR Congress candidate B Karunakar Reddy indulged in corruption when he was chairman of Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD).

Meanwhile, Election Commission official Vinod Zutsi, who is on a visit to Andhra Pradesh in connection with the bypolls, said election expenditure monitors will be deployed in the polls.
Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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