The political fraternity in Srikakulam and Vizianagaram districts has been hit by a series of deaths in recent days. While some succumbed to COVID-19, others have died of natural causes.
In Vizianagaram district, former Minister and senior YSRCP leader P. Sambasiva Raju, Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee vice-president Yadla Adiraju and YSRCP leader Kanakala Prasada Rao passed away in the last one month. TDP leader A. Sriramula Naidu of Ramabhadrapuram also died of illness recently.
Mr. Adiraju, who was said to be in good health, succumbed to COVID-19. He developed severe respiratory issues and died within a few hours of being shifted to hospital from his home. Mr. Sambasiva Raju and Mr. Kanakala Prasada Rao died despite being treated at well-known corporate hospitals in Visakhapatnam.
In Srikakulam district, former municipal chairperson Andhavarapu Varaha Narasimham, popularly known as Mr. Varam, died of a prolonged illness. Mr. Varam played a key role in Srikakulam politics, and his support was seen as crucial for those contesting the Assembly or Lok Sabha elections.
The untimely deaths of YSRCP leader Duda Sudhakar and TDP leader D.V.S. Prakasha Rao took locals by surprise. Revolutionary writer Vangapandu Prasada Rao and Vizianagaram District Cooperative Officer B. Srihari Rao were among other well-known individuals who died in the last one month. Mr. Vangapandu was well-liked in the North Andhra region, while Mr. Srihari Rao enjoyed a good standing in official and political circles of Srikakulam district.
Indian Medical Association -Vizianagaram district former president M. Venkateswara Rao said that those suffering from co-morbidities were at high risk of succumbing to COVID-19. “Many persons having high blood pressure and diabetes are at high risk after being infected by coronavirus. Those with obesity are experiencing a rapid deterioration in health as they cannot control the infection,” he said.
A.P. Private Hospitals and Nursing Homes Association member and noted physician N.L. Rao suggested to people to avoid alcohol and smoking as this would complicate their health if they get infected by COVID-19.
“Frequent COVID-19 testing helps public representatives and others to protect themselves from coronavirus. As they meet many people regularly and attend many meetings, frequent tests are required for them. They can get medical aid quickly if COVID-19 identified at the early stage,” Dr. Rao said.