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After 50 farmers, 3 Telugu activists to contest against PM Narendra Modi in Varanasi

Meanwhile, around 50 farmers from Nizamabad, under the auspices of Telangana Turmeric Farmers Association landed in Varanasi on Saturday and collected their nomination forms.

lok sabha elections Updated: Apr 27, 2019 17:15 IST
Srinivasa Rao Apparasu
Srinivasa Rao Apparasu
Hindustan Times, Hyderabad
Nizamabad,Nizamabad farmers,Telangana activists
Three Telugu youths on Friday chose to contest the Lok Sabha elections from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh from where Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seeking re-election for a second term.(HT Photo)

Close on the heels of turmeric farmers from Telangana’s Nizamabad and Tamil Nadu’s Erode, three other Telugu youths on Friday have chosen to contest the Lok Sabha elections from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh from where Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seeking re-election for a second term.

Vadde Srinivas and Kolluri Ravikiran Sharma from Botlaguduru village of Kanigiri in Andhra Pradesh’s Prakasam district, representatives of Pula Subbaiah Veligonda Project Sadhana Samithi, and their friend Jalagam Sudheer from Telangana’s Nalgonda district filed the nominations in Varanasi on Friday.

Srinivas and Sharma have been fighting for the early completion of Veligonda irrigation project that would mitigate bone-crippling disease of fluorosis in the district. On the other hand, Sudheer is also an activist of anti-fluorosis movement in Nalgonda district.

“Our intention to fight the elections in Varanasi against the Prime Minister is only to generate a nationwide discussion on fluorosis which has been ruining the lives of thousands of people in Prakasam and Nalgonda districts,” Srinivas said.

He said the project, foundation for which was laid by chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu during his first term on March 5, 1996, was supposed to be completed in five years, but it still remained incomplete. “It is expected to irrigate nearly 4.47 lakh acres of land besides providing drinking water to Prakasam, Nellore and Kadapa districts helping the people overcome the fluoride problem,” he said.

He said through the association, he tried to bring the issue to the notice of all the political parties but in vain. “We thought by contesting the elections in Varanasi, we can attract nationwide attention,” Srinivas said.

Meanwhile, around 50 farmers from Nizamabad, under the auspices of Telangana Turmeric Farmers Association landed in Varanasi on Saturday and collected their nomination forms. “We are looking for proposers for the nominations. But the local intelligence police are following us and threatening our proposers,” association leader K Narasimham Naidu said.

In Tamil Nadu, too, the police took the farmers’ leaders into custody on Thursday and after questioning, released them on Friday. “They are also coming to Varanasi by flight by tonight,” Naidu said.

First Published: Apr 27, 2019 17:14 IST