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Dot Com CM turns to SMS for votes

india Updated: Apr 21, 2008 01:17 IST
Ashok Das
Ashok Das
Hindustan Times
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He is one politician who is absolutely computer savvy and during his nine long years as CM of Andhra Pradesh he was known as the “Dot Com Chief Minister”.

N. Chandrababu Naidu, Leader of the Opposition in Andhra and TDP chief, has shifted gears since losing power in 2004 and is seeking to project himself as “pro-poor” and “pro-farmer” as against the image of “tech savvy” and “pro-World Bank” that he was branded with all along.

However, Naidu has not entirely given up on Information Technology. The TDP, under his guidance has been increasingly using IT to reach out to the masses at a time when mobile telephony has penetrated even the remotest areas of the state.

The latest move from Naidu, as he embarks on a 150-day state “Rath Yatra” (seen as starting of TDP’s poll campaign) on Monday, is to reach out to the masses through SMS. The scheme is titled “Chandrababu Naidu, just an SMS away”. The TDP was the first party to start a call centre and launch SMS to alert journalists about the party’s day-to-day activities way back in 2005.

“People can SMS Naidu by typing TDP (your problem) and send it to 56677.The problems will be brought before Naidu who will reply to them. It will also help the party get a feedback about the problems faced by people and accordingly nuance its response,” said LVSRK Prasad, chairman of the TDP media cell.