Eventually, the tide turned in favor of the YSR Congressional Party’s senior leader, Lella Appireddy, as the 54-year-old, who currently holds the party’s state secretary general, has been nominated as a member of the Legislative Council (MLC) in the quota of governors.
Party insiders say Mr. Appireddy, who has waited to power the YSRCP for the past two years, has finally been rewarded for his “unwavering loyalty” to Prime Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy.
“I owe my political career to Mr. Jagan Mohan Reddy. I thank him for trusting me. I will do my best to bring the party back to power in the next general election, ” said Mr Appireddy.
Mr. Appireddy came from a farming family in Ankireddypalem and had seen it all during his long political innings that can be described as a roller coaster ride.
As a student leader and later a union leader, Mr. Appireddy served as chairman of the district unit of the National Students Union of India from 1989 to 1994, getting close to many high-ranking congressional leaders.
Former Chief Ministers YS Rajasekhara Reddy, N. Janardhana Reddy, Kotla Vijaya Bhaskara Reddy had patronized the then young leader who had quickly learned the trade.
Mr. Appireddy had demonstrated his leadership skills in his student life by becoming SPL at SKBM High School in Guntur and later Student Director at GHR and MCMR College (Reddy College).
He had joined Congress and quickly rose to leadership positions, becoming President of the NSUI and the District Youth Congress Unit.
Mr. Appireddy was known for organizing large gatherings on short notice and enjoyed a support base from workers, auto rickshaw drivers and construction workers.
He founded the Bajrang Jute Mill Trade Union and won two consecutive elections in 2004 and 2009. He was instrumental in the implementation of several reforms, such as salary increases, compensation for the next of kin of the deceased workers, provision of 25,000 tons for girls as wedding expenses. In 2010 he also received the Shramasakthi Prize.
However, Mr. Appireddy has had his fair share of setbacks. He lost as a YSRCP candidate in the 2014 general election and was dejected when the party refused him a ticket in the 2019 elections, but he had remained loyal to Jagan Mohan Reddy all along.
The period between 2014 and 2019 was tough as Mr. Appireddy became the target of the political witch hunt by the then ruling government.
The break came in August 2020 when he was appointed head of party headquarters, a job Mr Appireddy had done well, coordinating the party’s preparation in successive local elections.