Hyderabad: Well-known technocrat and entrepreneur Palem Srikanth Reddy, who unsuccessfully fought against YSR Congress Party chief Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy years ago, succumbed to coronavirus (Covid-19) on Wednesday in Hyderabad.
Reddy tried his hand at politics as a candidate for the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) more than a decade ago but quit later after his loss to Jagan.
Srikanth Reddy, who was the founder and chairman of Palred Technologies Limited (PTL), had contested against Jagan Mohan Reddy in the 2009 Lok Sabha elections as a TDP candidate. He however lost by a margin of about 1.7 lakh. He quit the party around 2013.
“Srikanth Reddy was the first president of the Telugu Sankethika Nipunula Vibhagam (Telugu Professionals Wing) of the TDP. He was supposed to be the blue-eyed boy of the TDP, when we had started our careers years. No one knows clearly why he quit the TDP. He was a very nice man in fact,” recalled a senior TDP leader from AP, who did not want to be quoted.
The Hyderabad-based IT entrepreneur was a student graduate from REC, Trichy, and a post-graduate in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University, USA. Moreover, Palem Srikanth Reddy had also sold his previous venture Four Soft’s core IT and BPO business to a UK firm in 2013. The TDP leader quoted above said that Four Soft was sold for about Rs.200 crore.
Srikanth Reddy, who did his schooling from the Hyderabad Public School, was the son of former AP High Court Judge Palen Chennakesava Reddy. The father had passed away in February this year. After quitting the TDP in 2013, the entrepreneur started his political outfit called Jana Paalana.
A. Chandrasekhar, Anantapur-based political analyst and state-coordinator of Human Rights Forum, said that Srikanth Reddy wanted to enter active politics, but he did not succeed. “They were hoping against hope then (against Jagan in 2009), and he was projected as someone who would develop Rayalaseema. Srikanth Reddy had a network, and was talking about skill development, but he had no roots in Rayalaseema as such,” he added.
The writer is a Hyderabad-based journalist who has worked with The New Indian Express, The Hindu and Mint in the past.