It is people like Reddy and places like Nellore that the saffron party is looking to capitalise on. “Brand Modi is gaining momentum in the south and the voters here would spring a surprise,” said former BJP president Venkaiah Naidu, who is also from Nellore.
Modi’s popularity is reassuring but perhaps not enough to win the BJP seats on its own. Hence the talk of a pact with one-time partner, the TDP. The alliance had brought the BJP seven seats in 1999, its best performance in the state, which has 42 MPs.