Andhra Pradesh CM (Y S Rajasekhara Reddy) dead in chopper crash

Yeduguri Sandinti Rajasekhara Reddy (8 July 1949 – 2 September 2009), popularly known as YSR, was the Chief Minister of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh.[1] He represented the Indian National Congress party. He was elected to the 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th Lok Sabha from the Kadapa constituency for four terms and to the Andhra Pradesh Assembly for five terms from the Pulivendula constituency. In 2003 he undertook a three month long paadayaatra, or walking tour, across several districts in Andhra Pradesh. He led his party to victory in the next general and assembly elections held in 2004. On September 2nd 2009 a helicopter carrying YSR went missing in Nallamala forest area. On the morning of 3rd September, 2009, media agencies reported that the helicopter had been found crashed on top of Rudrakonda Hill, 40 nautical miles from Kurnool. This was later confirmed by the Prime Minister's office and all 5 persons aboard were pronounced dead at the scene

Early life

Rajasekhara Reddy was born in a christian family at Pulivendula, Andhra Pradesh to Y S Raja and Jayamma Reddy. He graduated with a degree in medical science from [Gulbarga University], Karnataka and completed his House Surgeonship at S.V. Medical College, Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh. He was the elected leader of the House Surgeon's Association at S.V. Medical College, Tirupati.


Y. S. Rajashekhara Reddy practiced medicine for sometime in his native Kadapa District. The hospital his father built for him at Pulivendula is still running. His family also built and ran a degree college and a polytechnic college at Pulivendula which was later handed over to the Loyola Group of Educational Institutions. Another junior college at Simhadripuram, a small town in the vicinity of Pulivendula, is helmed by his family.

Political career

From 1980-1983 he was a minister holding important portfolios related to Rural Development, Medical Health and Education. He was elected to the Lok Sabha from Kadapa constituency four times and was elected to the Andhra Pradesh State Assembly six times from Pulivendula constituency. Reddy was the leader of the opposition in the Andhra Pradesh State Assembly for five years. As an MLA he was influential in obtaining water from the Tungabhadra River for the Pulivendula Branch Canal (PBC) and fought for projects like RTPP (Rayalaseema Thermal Power Plant) at Muddanur and Proddatur Milk Foods and its ancillaries.

As APCC President

He was President of the Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) twice: 1983–1985 and 1998–2000. As the president of APCC, Reddy rendered yeomen services to the party in regaining the faith and trust of the masses. From 1999 to 2004 he was the Leader of Opposition in the eleventh state assembly.


During mid-summer in 2003, he led an unprecedented 1400 km long paadayaatra (foot pilgrimage), covering all backward areas in the state to understand the ground realities of living conditions of the people there. As a novice in the legislature, Reddy rallied all the Congress MLAs from the Rayalaseema region and led an indefinite hunger strike demanding solution to the water crisis. He also led a paadayaatra from Lepakshi to Pothireddipadu in Kurnool district.

As Chief Minister

Reddy was elected as the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh by the Legislature party of the Indian National Congress after they later won 185 seats of the Legislative Assembly in the May 2004 elections. He has initiated a variety of programs that influence the Economy of Andhra Pradesh including free power supply for farmers, Jalayagnam - a large scale program to construct more than 70 pending irrigation projects in the state to improve irrigation facilities to the farmers, and an increase in the minimum support price for rice. Prominent among other programs include Arogya Shree - a health insurance scheme for rural masses where the government pays the entire price of any surgery and does not require people to pay any premium, Pavala Vaddi - a program that provides loans to people at 3% per year so as to encourage them to take up small scale businesses and entrepreneurship primarily targeted at rural woman, Indiramma illu - a program for construction of houses for the rural masses by charging a small amount and the government the remaining amount, an Rs 2/Kg rice scheme, reimbursement of full college fees for backward sections, reservations for minorities, and a huge loan waiver program for the farmers.

Election 2009

Reddy's major campaign slogan for the 2009 election was "Development and the credibility ".

In the elections, Reddy's party (INC) secured the required majority in the assembly (156 seats) and also won 33 seats in parliament.

Reddy was sworn in as the chief minister for the term of 2009–2014 on 20 May 2009. The ceremony was held in Hyderabad's Lal Bahadur Shastri Stadium and attended by a crowd of around 20,000 people.


Opposition parties allege corruption in the implementation of Reddy's programs as well as in various other actions of both Reddy and his family. In 2008, Telugu Desam Party leader N. Chandrababu Naidu accused Reddy and his family of illegally amassing income through their companies Sandur Power Company, Jagathi Publications and Bharathi Cement Corporation. He also alleged that Reddy's sons were involved in the Satyam scandal. Also, the allotment of 487 acres of land in March 2007 to Raghuram Cements, which had the son of Reddy as one of its directors, was criticised by the Telugu Desam Party. The surrender of more than 1600 acres by Reddy in December 2006 was also criticised by the opposition parties who demanded Reddy's prosecution and resignation from his post. Naidu also called for Reddy's resignation after a 2007 Khammam police shooting resulted in eight deaths.

Personal life

Reddy was married to Vijaya Lakshmi. They have a son, Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy, a politician, and a daughter, Sharmila.


Y. S. Rajasekhara's Bell 430 helicopter went missing on Wednesday, September 2, 2009 at 9:35 am. Begumpet and Shamshabad Air Traffic controllers lost contact with the chopper at 9:02 am. The chopper went missing in the dense Nallamala forest area, which is associated with Naxal communist activity. Although there had been little Naxalite activity of late, the area had been pummeled by continuous rains, making the search mission very challenging. Several low altitude planes and the Indian Airforce's Sukhoi-30MKI with thermal imaging system were deployed,with an IL 78 on standby for Air-Air refueling..In the largest ever search operation in India massive ground operations were deployed which included 5000 CRPF soldiers for a search-and-rescue mission.

The army and police from six districts were involved in the ground search. Andhra Pradesh's anti Naxal forces were also deployed in the area, owing to their familiarity with the jungle terrain there. Local tribal residents from this part of the state assisted with the search mission. Patrol parties also combed the Krishna river for the remains of the helicopter.

ISRO's special aircraft was deployed for the searches ,generating 41 images but was unable to trace the chopper. The area which was combed lies south of state capital of Hyderabad. The territory is huge, around the town of Atmakur, in the eastern part of the Kurnool district.

The Indian Prime Minister's Office confirmed the chopper's crash in the morning of 3rd September and the death of all aboard, including Reddy, his special secretary P Subrahmanyam, chief security officer ASC Wesley, Group Captain SK Bhatia and Captain MS Reddy.He will be cremated on September 4th at Pulivendula in Kadapa district.

Positions held

* Minister of state for rural development (1980-82)
* Excise minister (1982)
* Education minister (1982-83)
* Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh (2004–2009)