With the Andhra Pradesh state elections scheduled for mid-April, the Praja Rajyam Party, headed by Indian film star Chiranjeevi, is gearing up for the final days of the campaign. His Yanadi supporter, the outspoken Tupakula Munemma, is still a prominent figure in the party.
A story on the party’s website last week described a rally at the Parade Ground in Hyderabad that evidently attracted a very large crowd. A photo with the story shows Chiranjeevi beating on a drum perhaps five feet across, with the Yanadi woman standing by his side. News videos of the event are also available on the Web.
The focus of the party is on social justice for the lowest classes of Andhra Pradesh. Speaking about the Backward Classes (BCs) of the state, Chiranjeevi told the crowd, “After us, all the other parties are speaking of social justice. Then how come the Congress [one of India’s major parties] has so few BCs as its candidates?”
The national government of India classifies people from the lowest elements of the country, both socially and economically, as belonging to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, or Other Backward Classes. The Yanadi are classified as a Scheduled Tribe. Chiranjeevi has praised Indian leaders who pay attention to the needs of these poorest people in their society. The election results will be tallied on May 16th.