Munugode bypoll: Voting pattern has many lessons for BJP

“There are some pockets in Choutuppal where Communists are strong. That could have contributed to TRS gaining votes there,” he opined.

Published: 07th November 2022 07:37 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th November 2022 07:37 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: The BJP can learn much from the voting pattern in Choutuppal mandal and municipality where it was expecting a huge lead, but ultimately failed to cut ice with the voters. It was clear for the party leaders right from the end of the fourth round of counting that the saffron party was not doing as well as it expected in Choutuppal. BJP candidate Komatireddy Rajagopal Reddy trailed by 604 votes after the fourth round of counting, leaving his party leaders stunned. 

Speaking to Express shortly after fourth round figures were announced, BJP vice-president G Manohar Reddy, who had contested twice from the Assembly constituency and was also the coordinator for the Munugode campaign steering committee, expressed his concern over the trend in Choutuppal. “There are some pockets in Choutuppal where Communists are strong. That could have contributed to TRS gaining votes there,” he opined.

It was clear that for some reason, the BJP’s traditional votes failed to transfer to Rajagopal Reddy. BJP insiders say that the party didn’t focus much on its campaign in Choutuppal while the TRS worked hard at a microscopic level to manage the voters here. 

Rajagopal Reddy has been able to transfer most of the Congress vote bank that had backed him in 2018. This was the reason he secured 86,697 votes in all. However, he failed to retain much of his Congress voter-base in Chandur mandal and municipality limits, where he trailed by 1,671 votes. 

Even in Sansthan Narayanpur, where BJP had campaigned extensively, Rajagopal trailed by 1,750 votes. There are a considerable number of voters here that back the communist parties, and it is believed that they all voted for TRS candidate Kusukuntla Prabhakar Reddy.

What is interesting to note is that Rajagopal Reddy was able to get votes in remote tribal hamlets, where the BJP never had any base. This means that he has been able to attract voters from all sections, which could be why he was not trailing by a huge margin in any of the 15 rounds of counting. 

With this, one can infer that Rajagopal Reddy has certainly added strength to BJP in the constituency where the saffron party was never strong. The same happened in Dubbak and Huzurabad, where M Raghunandan Rao and Eatala Rajender, who came from TRS and contested as BJP candidates, polled votes in constituencies where the saffron party never had a strong presence earlier. 

The BJP leadership has been banking on leaders like Rajagopal Reddy to help the party spread to new frontiers and has certainly benefited in the run-up to the coming Assembly elections. This is precisely why the saffron party leadership has been openly asserting that they would welcome leaders who enjoy people’s support, provided they believed in BJP’s policies and wanted to contribute to its success in the next Assembly elections.


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