The ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi has achieved hat-trick in a battle of ballot when it wrested the Narayankhed Assembly seat from the Congress by a massive majority in the by-elections.
In yet another prestigious by-election in the fledgling State of Telangana for the Narayankhed Assembly constituency in Medak district, the polling for which was held on February 14, the TRS candidate M. Bhupal Reddy trounced his nearest Congress opponent P. Sanjeeva Reddy by a margin of 53,625 votes.
While TRS candidate polled 93,076 votes as against the Congress nominee’s tally of 39,451 votes, TDP candidate M. Vijayapal Reddy came third by polling 14,787 votes and earned the inglorious distinction of losing deposit. What is more humiliating is that he received the drubbing from his own brother Bhupal Reddy, the TRS nominee.
The by-election to Narayanklhed Assembly seat was necessitated following the death of the sitting Congress member P. Kishta Reddy. The Congress by fielding Sanjeeva Reddy, the deceased member’s son expected that he would be elected unopposed in tune with the past precedents. However, the ruling TRS was in no mood to hand over the seat to the Congress on a platter as the party has won eight out of the 10 Assembly seats in Medak district in the 2014 elections.
Thus, with the sole objective of demolishing the Congress stronghold in the constituency, the TRS entered the poll fray by fielding Bhupal Reddy, who had in fact, came second and lost the seat to Congress in the 2014 elections. The TDP, in a desperate attempt to keep its presence alive in the State in the wake of its own members deserting it, fielded TRS nominee’s own brother Vijayapal Reddy as its nominee. The TDP expected that by pitting the brothers against each other, it would benefit it in the process. However, its plans miserably boomeranged.
The TRS on its part has taken the by-election as a prestigious issue and did not want to leave anything for granted. Hence, TRS supremo and Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhara Rao entrusted the campaigning to his nephew and Irrigation Minister T. Harish Rao, who relentlessly campaigned in the nook and corner of the constituency highlighting the developments achieved under the TRS regime. Apart from other senior leaders of the party campaigning, KCR rounded off the electioneering a day before the last date by addressing a massive public meeting.
KCR’s assurance to develop the constituency with special financial packages seemed to have had the desired effect on the minds of the electorate, who overwhelmingly extended their support by voting in favour of TRS and enabled the party achieve an hat-trick. Earlier, the TRS had won with a thumping majority the by-election for the Warangal Lok Sabha seat. The pink party continued its winning spree by capturing one of the biggest civic bodies in the country, the GHMC. Now it has tightened its grip on the Narayankhed Assembly seat.
It is pertinent to note that while it was KCR’s son and IT Minister K.T. Rama Rao was the architect in ensuring the TRS victory in the GHMC elections, it is the CM’s nephew and Irrigation Minister Harish Rao, who had designed the party’s success. (NSS)