Praja Rajyam president Chiranjeevi formally launched his election campaign in style by beating the "victory drum" in front of half a million supporters at the huge Parade Grounds in Hyderabad on Saturday. This was one of the biggest shows of strength by the fledgling party.
While the huge dais was packed with the top leaders of the party, including his two brothers and brother-in-law, the ground was packed his frenzied fans and youth who had come form different parts of the state, mostly from the neighboring Telangana districts.
Lashing out at the ruling Congress party and main opposition Telugu Desam for their partnership in "sharing the fruits of power" and match fixing to indulge in corruption one after the other, Chiranjeevi announced that only Praja Rajyam was the representative of backward classes and other weaker sections of society.
Pointing out that Congress party in its just announced assembly candidates had given only 67 tickets to the backward castes who are 50% of the total population, against 87 tickets to the Reddy caste who are only 5.6% of the population, Chiranjeevi said, "This is the prove that the Congress party is not at all sincere in its promise of doing social justice. Praja Rajyam will give more than 100 tickets to the Backward Classes," he said.
Chiranjeevi said that while Muslims constitute 10% of the population in the state and they should have got the 10% share of Rs 1 lakh crore budget, they were getting only Rs 170 crore budget. "On coming to power Praja Rajyam will provide Rs 1000 to the minorities financial corporation to improve their economic condition", he said.
He also announced that on coming to power he would order a through probe in all the alleged scams and corrupt deals of both the Congress and Telugu Desam governments of the recent past. "There is no question of hiding any thing or shielding any body. I am making this promise to you that every thing will be produced before the people of the state to enable them to decide", he said.
He also committed himself to the separate Telanana state and assured the people that it will be created in accordance with the aspirations of the people.
As Chiranjeevi read out a pledge lakhs of his supporters roared in unison. "I will strive to achieve social justice and build a society free of corruption, starvation deaths, suicides, caste and communal prejudices, violence and atrocities, illiteracy. I will strive to usher in a new society. I take oath on my conscience that i will work honestly to provide every citizen quality life."