Cross-voting fear makes TRS 'hide' representatives of local bodies

There are around 5,600 voters who are eligible to vote in these MLC elections

Hyderabad: After the Huzurabad debacle, the ruling TRS is not taking any chances in the elections for 12 MLC seats under local bodies quota, despite having a huge majority in the urban and rural local bodies.

With the TRS facing stiff competition from the Congress in few seats and the BJP supporting independents in few others, ministers and TRS MLAs are shifting voters — the local body representatives — to camps located outside the state to sequester them until polling on December 10 to prevent poaching by rivals.

Out of the 12 MLC seats, the Congress has fielded candidates only for two seats in undivided Medak and Khammam districts. Although the BJP has not fielded any candidate, it has decided to extend support to independent candidates, wherever they are strong and have the chances to win the election.

There are around 5,600 voters who are eligible to vote in these MLC elections, who include sarpanches, ward members, ZPTCs, MPTCs, councillors and corporators. Of them, about 90 per cent belong to the TRS as the party had almost swept all local bodies polls held between 2019 and 2021.

On Tuesday, the last day for filing nominations, candidates from TRS and Congress besides independents filed nominations. The 12 seats witnessed nominations ranging from seven to 30 except in Nizamabad, where two nominations were filed and Ranga Reddy, where three nominations were filed.

According to party sources, the TRS leadership suspects that the rival candidates may poach their elected representatives of local bodies by luring them with money, liquor and costly gifts and to prevent this it wants to make them inaccessible to rivals by sequestering them until December 10 polling day.

The TRS is also facing a rebellion in a few seats as those who failed to get party tickets have filed nominations as independents.

All the ministers and MLAs concerned accompanied the party's candidates in all the districts while filing nominations on Monday. Soon after the nominations process ended, the ministers and MLAs, who were responsible for these elections by the party, began the process to sequester their elected representatives of local bodies in neighbouring states like Karnataka, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and even Goa among others.

According to TRS sources, some leaders chose resorts on the outskirts of the city to hide their local body representatives until December 10.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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