Political Pickle

You’ve got Mail ! From Jaganmohan Reddy

In the run-up to the elections in Andhra Pradesh, 60,000 people received a personalised letter delivered at their doorstep from YS Jaganmohan Reddy. This was no spam mailing from the YSR Congress chief but a clinical attempt to reach out, the brainchild of political strategist Prashant Kishor. 

Under the Anna Pillupu (Anna’s call) programme of the party, 60000 influencers were identified through out Andhra Pradesh. These influencers included the likes of a school principal, a doctor, an anganwadi worker, a kirana shop owner, basically anyone doing commendable work at the grassroots. Kishor’s I-PAC team says it spent six months only to identify such people in every nook and corner of the state. Sixty interns were then hired to draft personalised letters written by Jagan. 

The idea was to have Jagan appreciate the work done by the people, give them a phone number they could call on to give their feedback on issues to him. The intention was that happy with this reachout, if each influencer further influenced 10-20 people around him, it could work to YSRCP’s advantage. The impression went out that Jagan had sought their support and made them part of a change process. The advantage also was that the party got an apolitical feedback to the promises they intended to make in their manifesto. 

When Kishore worked with Narendra Modi in Gujarat, they had done a similar exercise to reach out to newer people. But the scale was much larger in Andhra Pradesh. 

23 May will reveal if such an effort has paid off for the party and translated into more button pushed for the fan symbol on the EVM.

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