Hyderabad: Dozens of candidates, including a sitting MLC each from BJP and TRS, are testing their fortune in both the upcoming graduate constituency MLC elections in Telangana. The main political parties have already declared their candidates for fighting the election but the field is also rife with independents.
The BJP has nominated its sitting MLC N. Ramchander Rao to contest from the Hyderabad, Rangareddy and Mahabubnagar constituency while and BJP senior leader and state party general secretary G. Premender Reddy will test his luck from the Warangal, Nalgonda and Khammam constituency.
The ruling TRS party has re-nominated its sitting MLC Palla Rajeswar Reddy for the Warangal, Nalgonda and Khammam constituency. The party has, however, not announced any candidate for the Hyderabad, Rangareddy and Mahabubnagar constituency till Tuesday.
TRS party leaders, including ministers, MLAs and aspirants are still confused whether the party is going to contest or not in the election. Sources said that the party was likely to support Prof. Nageswar Rao’s candidature if it does not contest the election.
The Congress party has named former Minister and senior leader G. Chinna Reddy for the Hyderabad, Rangareddy and Mahabubnagar constituency, while former MLC Ramulu Naik, who joined the Congress from TRS, has been given the ticket to contest from the Warangal, Nalgonda and Khammam constituency.
Interestingly, two academics, who are well known to most Telugu people, are in the fray. Prof. M. Kodandaram, who chair the employees and other JACs to agitate for a separate state, who is contesting on TJS ticket, whereas Prof. K. Nageswar Rao, who has won twice as an MLC, is a former journalist and political analyst with a clear bias towards the ruling pink party, and ic contesting as an independent.
But they won’t be facing each other, because while Prof. Kondandaram is contesting on the symbol of his own party, Telangana Jana Samithi, for the Warangal, Nalgonda and Khammam segment, whereas Prof Nageswar Rao is contesting from the Hyderabad, Rangareddy and Mahabubnagar segment. The election has got students and former students who were part of the separate statehood agitation highly interested in watching the fate of the two professors.
BJP leaders, including Union minister of state for home affairs G. Kishan Reddy, have geared up for the party’s campaign for the MLC elections. The party is highly confident that it can sustain the momentum as numero uno challenger to the ruling establishment in the state, by completing a hat trick after its formidable win in Dubbaka by-poll and the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation elections.
Kishan Reddy addressed several meetings including the party internal committees meeting, and separate meetings with intellectuals, teachers and private lecturers and other delegations to give a boost to the party candidates.
The Congress party launched its campaign in Nalgonda. TPCC president N. Uttam Kumar Reddy started the campaign for the Nalgonda, Khammam and Warangal constituency. The TPCC chief has taken up the election as a crucial affair because the party has to win the election to energise its cadre and to survive in Telangana as a potential rival to TRS in the next elections.
It is equally important for the TRS to get back to its winning ways and stop the BJP juggernaut in the state. It has to retain its seat in Warangal, Nalgonda and Khammam and trty to wrest the other from the BJP. But will it contest or is there a surprise waiting for people is a question doing the rounds in political circles.
The ruling party has started its campaign in both graduate constituencies over two months ago. District ministers including Errabelli Dayakar Rao, Jagadish Reddy and others are organising regular interactions with voters as well as the party cadre.
Close on heels to the MLC elections is the prestigious bye-election to the Nagarjuna Sagar constituency. The TRS is reasoning that if it can bag the MLC election in an area that has partial location coincidence, it will be able to sustain the edge for the bypoll. For this reason, district ministers, several MLAs and MLCs, are taking the campaign seriously.
The left parties, the CPI and CPI-M, have jointly announced the official candidature of Jayasaradhi Reddy, a senior journalist, contesting from Warangal, Nalgonda and Khammam constituency. The parties claim, despite a larger national electoral irrelevance, to have good support in the area and segment.
Rani Rudrama Reddy, another veteran journalist, is also contesting from here on a Yuva Telangana party ticket. Naveen, alias Theenmar Mallanna, is also contesting from the same segment as an independent. Mallanna contested as a Congress candidate in the last graduate MLC elections but was defeated by Palla Rajeswar Reddy.
G. Harshavardhan Reddy is also contesting as an independent here. He is a Congress rebel candidate and a teachers’ union leader.
L. Ramana, Telugu Desam Telangana state president, is contesting from the Warangal, Nalgonda and Khammam constituency. The party was defeated in all elections since 2014 but has decided to contest the elections to boost the morale of the few cadres it still retains....