Since May 2012 Y S Jaganmohan Reddy of the YSR Congress has been incarcerated in jail in Hyderabad as an accused in multiple fi nancial scams and for amassing disproportionate wealth using his father Y S Rajasekhara Reddy's political power. This article throws light on the historical and social roots of the rise of such personalities and illuminates the complex dynamics of democratic politics in Andhra Pradesh.