Thursday, September 03, 2009

RIP YS Rajasekhar Reddy

“Ayana chanipoledu, makosam tappaka vastadu.” He is not dead, he will return for us.

On Thursday September 3, 2009, Andhra Pradesh's beloved Chief Minister, Dr. YS Rajasekhar Reddy, died in a helicopter crash that also tragically took the lives of his four companions: principal secretary, Dr P. Subramanyam, chief security officer, Mr A.C.S. Wesley, and two pilots, Group Captain S.K. Bhatia and Captain M.S. Reddy. The Chief Minister's body was found in the jungles of Nallamala forest. The government helicopter was reported to have taken off in inclement weather.

YSR Reddy was a politician for the people and an advocate for the poor. His passion was to transform Andhra Pradesh into a well developed state. He was a rising star who ascended from the bottom of the political ladder by his own efforts and merit, and by all accounts was set to become a giant in statewide if not national politics. Reports of the unprecedented grief and shock by the public over the Chief Minister's death is indeed astonishing and telling. Perhaps a sad foreshadowing of things to come, in 2004, YSR Reddy was quoted as saying: “I will not continue in politics after I complete 60 years.”

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