Saturday, June 15, 2024

BJP candidate faces backlash over threats amid fear of defeat

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The Bharatiya Janata Party’s candidate for the Visakhapatnam North Assembly Constituency, P Vishnukumar Raju, is facing controversy as the spectre of defeat casts a shadow over his campaign. Recent revelations have shed light on his use of threats and coercion, triggering widespread discussion and condemnation.
Raju’s desperation seems apparent in his bid to garner support from unexpected quarters, including entrepreneurs in private companies. Reports indicate that Raju has resorted to issuing veiled threats to business owners, pressuring them to ensure their employees campaign exclusively for his victory. Instances of intimidating phone calls to proprietors, warning against any support for Raju’s opponents, have emerged, painting a concerning picture of undue influence and coercion.
However, amidst Raju’s tactics, there are instances of defiance. Notably, a private hospital owner stood firm in asserting the autonomy of their employees’ political activities outside working hours, refusing to succumb to Raju’s pressure. Moreover, Raju’s growing impatience and intolerance are becoming more noticeable, as shown by his brief dismissal of those who disagree with him. Leaders from BJP, Jana Sena, and TDP, who were once staunch supporters of his campaign, now find themselves uneasy with Raju’s aggressive tactics and disparaging remarks, reflecting a growing dissatisfaction within his own support base. The discontent among constituents is palpable, with many expressing concern over Raju’s departure from the norms of electoral campaigning. Instead of winning votes through persuasion and policy, Raju’s reliance on threats has only succeeded in alienating voters and raising concerns about his suitability for public office.
Raju’s electoral track record also raises doubts about his prospects. Despite winning the North assembly constituency in 2014 under the BJP banner, his subsequent loss in 2019, where he secured a mere 18,790 votes, points to a diminishing influence. The emergence of other contenders, such as YSRCP candidate KK Raju and Jana Sena candidate Kuraleti Ushakiran, further underscores Raju’s declining electoral appeal. Furthermore, Raju’s penchant for controversy and his strained relations within the BJP hierarchy have not gone unnoticed. Past admonishments from Prime Minister Modi himself, coupled with internal disciplinary actions, indicate a troubled history that now threatens to overshadow his electoral bid.

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