After LS polls, BRS faces litmus test in Council byelection

This byelection will test the pink party’s strength in the three erstwhile districts.
Representational image of BRS party logo
Representational image of BRS party logoFile Photo

HYDERABAD: After facing defeat in the 2023 Assembly polls, the BRS is hoping to retain the Warangal-Khammam-Nalgonda graduates Member of Legislative Council (MLC) seat in the byelection scheduled to be held on May 27.

This byelection was necessitated following the resignation of Palla Rajeshwar Reddy from the Council following his election to the Assembly from Jangaon on a BRS ticket.

This byelection will test the pink party’s strength in the three erstwhile districts.

In the previous election, Rajeshwar Reddy polled 1.10 lakh votes, defeating independent candidate Teenmar Mallanna, who secured 83,290 votes by over 20,000 votes.

TJS candidate Prof Kodandaram polled 70,072 votes, the BJP’s Premender Reddy 39,107 and Congress candidate Ramulu Naik polled 27,588 votes.

This time, the BRS has fielded A Rakesh Reddy, who joined the BRS from the BJP just before the Assembly elections. However, his candidature has sparked dissatisfaction among BRS leaders in Warangal, Nalgonda and Khammam, reportedly due to issues with former MLAs. This internal rift has resulted in a lack of active campaigning by the party cadre, creating tension within pink party circles.

BRS working president KT Rama Rao has held preparatory meetings with district leaders, but their support on the ground has been minimal. This has presented a considerable challenge for the party leadership.

Interestingly, the ruling Congress has fielded Teenmar Mallanna this time while the saffron party has nominated Premender Reddy again. This has added to the intrigue surrounding the byelection.

The ongoing Lok Sabha elections have seen a clear contest between Congress and BJP, with both parties now anticipating a similar head-to-head battle in this byelection. The internal rifts within BRS are expected to impact its candidate’s chances.

Campaigning is in full swing, with parties touring districts and appealing to graduates for support.

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