Chiranjeevi’s US-based fans ready to ‘party’
Around 300 US-based Chiranjeevi fans have already descended on Andhra Pradesh and have joined their hero to start campaigning for the yet-to-be-launched, yet-to-be-named party, reports Prasad Nichenametla.india Updated: Aug 24, 2008 00:17 IST
The new political party to be launched by Telugu superstar Chiranjeevi may be creating problems for the ruling Congress and the opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) in Andhra Pradesh, but the matinee idol’s foray into politics is now even splitting the till-now closely knit NRTs — Non-Resident Telugus — in faraway America.
Around 300 US-based Chiranjeevi fans have already descended on Andhra Pradesh and have joined their hero to start campaigning for the yet-to-be-launched, yet-to-be-named party. Chiru will be addressing a public rally in Tirupati on August 26, where he will announce the name and agenda of the new party.
“Some people have moved out and extended their support to the new party,” admits Gangadhar Nadella, the owner of a software firm in California and National Committee member of NRI-TDP, overseas wing of the TDP.
Traditionally, a major chunk of NRTs — numbering about 4 lakh, most of whom are students and IT professionals — have been TDP supporters. But now with ‘Chiru’ in the fray, tech-savvy TDP chief N. Chandrababu Naidu has to deal with desertion in the US as well.
In the wake of the political developments in Andhra, the American wing of the TDP, NRI-TDP, held a huge rally of 350 cars in Detroit last week. The two-hour rally, named ‘Mana Kosam’ (For Us), was held to mark the end of Chandrababu Naidu’s 117-days tour across Andhra Pradesh. Some 800 NRTs, escorted by the local police force, turned out for the rally.
Though there are some representations of the Congress and other desi parties within the Telugu community in the US, so far the NRI-TDP is the major political platform for NRTs. That is, unless Chiru’s American fan base shakes things up.