The Telangana Legislative Assembly election held on December 2023 or January 2024 marked, a crucial turning point in the political landscape of Telangana, shaping the destiny of the state’s governance. This election was a pivotal event that underscored the democratic choices of the people and their aspirations for effective leadership and representation.
Key Contenders in the 2018 Election
In this significant electoral battle, the key contenders were the incumbent Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), Indian National Congress (INC), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS), and Telugu Desam Party (TDP). Each of these parties, armed with their unique ideologies and agendas, aimed to secure the trust of the voters and contribute to the state’s development and progress.
Formation of the ‘Maha Kootami’ Alliance
Ahead of the election, an intriguing development took place as four opposition parties – INC, TJS, TDP, and CPI – joined forces to establish a ‘Maha Kootami’ or Grand Alliance. The aim of this alliance was to challenge the supremacy of the ruling TRS and create a formidable opposition front. Despite their combined efforts, the Maha Kootami did not secure a majority, and the TRS emerged victorious, reaffirming its position at the helm of the state’s administration.
Background and Early Elections
The decision to hold early elections in 2018 was led by K. Chandrashekar Rao, who resigned from his position on September 6, 2018, a full nine months before the completion of his term. As no single party held a clear majority, the governor dissolved the legislative house, leading to the announcement of general elections.
Revolutionizing the Electoral Process
The Election Commission of India introduced a revolutionary change in the electoral process by incorporating Voter-verified paper audit trail (VVPAT) machines in all 32,574 polling stations for the assembly elections in Telangana. This move aimed to enhance transparency and integrity in the voting process. Notably, the final electoral rolls revealed a voter count of 2,80,64,680, slightly lower than the 2,81,65,885 voters in the 2014 Telangana assembly elections. The voter list also included more than 2,600 individuals identifying as transgender.
The demographic breakdown of the voters for the Telangana Legislative Assembly election in 2018 was as follows:
- Male: 1.38 crore
- Female: 1.35 crore
- Transgender: 5,560
- Total voters: 2,80,64,680
Election Schedule and Timeline
The election day, December 7, 2018, was a culmination of a well-defined timeline:
- Nominations: November 12, 2018 (Monday)
- Last Date for Filing Nominations: November 19, 2018 (Monday)
- Scrutiny of Nominations: November 20, 2018 (Tuesday)
- Last Date for Withdrawal of Candidatures: November 22, 2018 (Thursday)
- Date of Poll: December 7, 2018 (Friday)
- Date of Counting: December 11, 2018 (Tuesday)
- Election Completion Date: December 13, 2018 (Thursday)
Defining Results: Party Performance
The election results showcased a dynamic shift in the political landscape, with parties securing votes and seats as follows:
- Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS): Popular vote – 9,700,948; Seats won – 88
- Indian National Congress (INC): Popular vote – 5,883,088; Seats won – 19
- Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP): Popular vote – 1,443,799; Seats won – 1
- Telugu Desam Party (TDP): Popular vote – 725,714; Seats won – 2
- All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM): Popular vote – 561,091; Seats won – 7
- All India Forward Bloc (AIFB): Popular vote – 159,515; Seats won – 1
- Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP): Popular vote – 426,203; Seats won – 0
- Communist Party of India (CPI): Popular vote – 83,215; Seats won – 0
- Independents: Popular vote – 673,609; Seats won – 1
Regional Distribution and Performance
The electoral map of Telangana was significantly colored by the performance of various parties across districts:
TRS Electoral Journey
2009 Elections: A Setback and an Alliance
In the year 2009, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) embarked on an electoral journey filled with hopes and ambitions. Forming a strategic alliance with the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), the party also joined forces with the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA). This collaboration led to TRS contesting in 45 Assembly seats and 9 Parliament seats. However, the election results proved to be disappointing as the party could only secure 10 Assembly seats and 2 Parliament seats. Regrettably, this outcome marked another significant defeat on TRS’s timeline.
2014 Elections: A Path of Independence and Victory
As the 2014 Assembly and National Elections approached, TRS chose a different trajectory. This time, the party decided to go solo and not align with either the NDA or the UPA. The campaign was led by TRS, which had fervently advocated for a separate state for more than a decade. The results were a testament to their determination, as TRS emerged victorious by capturing 11 out of the 17 Lok Sabha seats and an impressive 63 out of the 119 Assembly seats. Notably, TRS also gained distinction by securing the largest vote share in Telangana.
The forefront of TRS’s campaign was dominated by KCR, who tirelessly addressed over 300 public gatherings. With a remarkable feat, he even managed to address more than 10 meetings in a single day, often utilizing helicopters for efficient travel. This approach paid off as TRS not only retained its stronghold in north Telangana but also managed to make substantial inroads in the traditionally Congress-dominant south Telangana region.
It wasn’t until the official creation of the separate Telangana state, following the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, that TRS truly tasted electoral success. In the 2014 Assembly elections for the newly formed state, TRS secured victory in 63 out of the 110 contested seats, paving the way for the formation of the government. On 2 June 2014, K. Chandrashekar Rao took the oath as the first Chief Minister of Telangana.
2018 Telangana Legislative Assembly Elections: A Strategic Move
In a bold move, the TRS Government, led by Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao, dissolved the Telangana Legislative Assembly on 6 September 2018. This marked the first dissolution after the establishment of Telangana, and it was intended to facilitate early elections within the state. Simultaneously, the party unveiled a list of 104 candidates slated to contest in the upcoming elections on the same day.
Subsequently, in the 2018 Telangana Legislative Assembly elections, held nearly three months following the dissolution, the TRS party secured a resounding victory. The party triumphed by winning a massive majority, capturing an impressive 88 out of the total 119 constituency seats. This commanding win accounted for more than 70% of the available seats and solidified TRS’s political standing.
2019 Indian General Election: A Shift in Focus
The year 2019 witnessed TRS Chief Rao exploring a novel concept: the Federal Front. This initiative aimed at establishing a government at the center that wasn’t aligned with either the Congress or the BJP. In the general election that followed, TRS contested in 17 seats and managed to secure victory in 9 of them. While this result marked a decrease of two seats compared to the 2014 election outcome, it still reflected the party’s influence and aspirations.
Bharat Rashtra Samithi: A National Aspiration
In a pivotal move, the party underwent a transformation by changing its name from Telangana Rashtra Samithi to Bharat Rashtra Samithi on 5 October 2022. This strategic shift aimed to extend its reach into national politics, setting the stage for the upcoming Indian general election. Official documentation for the name change was submitted to the Election Commission of India in New Delhi on 6 October 2022, in accordance with the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
As of October 2022, the party’s activities have been centered in a rented building on Sardar Patel Marg in Delhi. A significant milestone was reached on 14 November when the party’s new office in New Delhi was inaugurated, marking a physical representation of its national aspirations.
Through triumphs and transformations, TRS has navigated the intricate landscape of Indian politics, establishing itself as a force to be reckoned with. The journey continues, as the party sets its sights on broader horizons and newer accomplishments. TRS MLA candidates list announced by KCR.
Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee: Upholding Political Legacy and Navigating Challenges
The Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee, commonly referred to as Telangana PCC, stands as the robust state unit of the Indian National Congress (INC) within the dynamic landscape of Telangana, India. This pivotal organization holds the reins for meticulously orchestrating and synchronizing the party’s multifaceted endeavors and campaigns across the state. Furthermore, it undertakes the critical responsibility of handpicking adept candidates for elections spanning local, state, and national domains.
A Visionary Leadership: Anumula Revanth Reddy at the Helm
At present, the distinguished stewardship of the Telangana PCC is steered by Anumula Revanth Reddy. A visionary with a commitment to progress, Reddy embodies the ideals and aspirations of the INC, propelling the committee toward greater heights. Under his guidance, the party strives to navigate the intricate maze of state politics, striving to resonate with the populace’s needs and aspirations.
A Tapestry of Historical Significance
Woven into the fabric of Telangana’s political narrative, the Telangana PCC boasts a storied history of influence and engagement. Its origins trace back to a time when united Andhra Pradesh stood as its backdrop, and the committee’s voice resonated with the masses. However, as the sands of time swept across the political landscape, challenges emerged, reshaping the trajectory of the committee’s journey.
A Changing Landscape: Post-2014 Dynamics
The political landscape of the region underwent a seismic shift with the inception of Telangana as a distinct state in 2014. This watershed moment not only redefined the geographical boundaries but also reconfigured the political dynamics. The Telangana PCC found itself grappling with new realities, as its electoral support experienced a perceptible dip. The fervor that accompanied Telangana’s newfound autonomy resulted in the realignment of political affiliations.
Leadership Transitions: A Struggle for Resurgence
Ponnala Lakshmaiah assumed the mantle of the first president of the Telangana PCC on March 11, 2014, in the wake of Andhra Pradesh’s bifurcation. However, the political landscape proved turbulent, and the committee faced a formidable setback. The 2014 Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly elections marked a somber chapter as the party secured zero seats out of 175 in the Coastal Andhra and Rayalseema regions. In Telangana, it managed a modest 21 out of 119 seats. This electoral downturn translated to a decline of nearly 25 percentage points from its 2009 vote share.
The KCR Wave and Shifting Equations
The rise of K. Chandrashekhar Rao, popularly known as KCR, and the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) emerged as a forceful narrative in the political spectrum. Riding on the wave of support fueled by the realization of Telangana’s long-awaited autonomy, KCR assumed power, relegating the Congress to the sidelines. The party’s fortunes took another hit in the GHMC elections, where it secured a mere two seats in the 150-member civic body, a stark contrast to its previous tally of 54.
Collaboration for Change: The Maha Kootami
In a strategic maneuver, the Congress forged an unprecedented alliance in the 2018 Telangana Legislative Assembly elections. Partnering with the Telangana Jana Samithi, the Telugu Desam Party, and the Communist Party of India, erstwhile rivals united under the banner of the “Maha Kootami” or Grand Alliance. The aim was clear: unseating the TRS and KCR from their dominant position. Despite their collective efforts, the alliance managed to secure only 21 seats, with the Congress contributing 19. The TRS, on the other hand, strengthened its hold, increasing its seats from 63 to 88.
The Path Forward: Adapting and Evolving
The Congress’s journey in the political landscape of Telangana has been punctuated by adaptations to the changing tides. The 2020 Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation elections witnessed the party securing a mere two seats. This outcome prompted the resignation of N. Uttam Kumar Reddy from the position of TPCC president, signaling the need for renewed leadership. The reins were subsequently handed over to the seasoned political figure Revanth Reddy in 2021.
In conclusion, the Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee, a stalwart in the state’s political theater, has navigated through peaks and valleys, showcasing resilience and adaptability. As it stands today, under the dynamic leadership of Anumula Revanth Reddy, the committee continues to script its narrative in the ever-evolving landscape of Telangana politics, driven by a commitment to serve its constituents and carve a distinctive path toward progress.
BJP’s Political Trajectory in Telangana: From Inception to Resilience
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), in alliance with the Telugu Desam Party, emerged onto the political stage of Telangana following the state’s formation in 2014. The party embarked on its journey with the fervor of change and the aspiration to secure its place in the intricate fabric of the newly carved political landscape.
2014 Legislative Assembly Election: A Modest Beginning
In the wake of Telangana’s formation, the BJP, aligning forces with the Telugu Desam Party, plunged into the 2014 Legislative Assembly election. Their concerted efforts yielded a modest result of 5 seats in the newly established Telangana Legislative Assembly. Simultaneously, the BJP clinched victory in the Lok Sabha election, securing a seat from the Secunderabad constituency.
2018: Navigating Challenges and Seeking Revival
As the political dynamics continued to evolve, the state assembly witnessed an early dissolution in 2018, paving the way for elections within the same year. However, the BJP faced a testing phase, securing only 1 seat in this electoral contest. Undeterred by setbacks, the party continued its engagement, determined to reclaim its footing.
2019 Lok Sabha Victory: Gaining Momentum
The year 2019 marked a resurgence for the BJP in Telangana. In the Lok Sabha election, the party secured an impressive victory, capturing 4 out of the 17 seats. This electoral achievement signified a notable increase in its representation, accompanied by a commendable 19.45% share of the total votes.
Electoral Performance: A Snapshot
Lok Sabha Elections:
- In 2014, the BJP maintained a steady performance, securing 1 out of 17 seats, positioning itself in the government.
- The year 2019 brought a remarkable upswing as the party garnered 4 seats, marking an increase of 3 and consolidating its position in the government.
Legislative Assembly Elections:
- In the inaugural 2014 elections, the BJP managed to hold its ground with 5 out of 119 seats, constituting 4.13% of the voteshare and asserting itself as part of the opposition.
- The subsequent 2018 elections witnessed a decrease in seats to 1 out of 119, accompanied by a voteshare of 7.1%, solidifying its presence as part of the “Others” category.
Leadership Dynamics: Guiding the Course
Legislative Assembly Floor Leaders:
- From 2014 to 2019, G. Kishan Reddy held the mantle of the Legislative Assembly Floor Leader.
- In 2019, Raja Singh took over the reins, carrying forward the party’s vision and strategy.
Legislative Council Floor Leaders:
- N. Ramchander Rao effectively led the Legislative Council Floor from 2015 to 2021.
- In 2023, A. Venkata Narayana Reddy assumed the role, contributing to the party’s continual evolution.
Union Ministers: A Testament to Representation
- Bandaru Dattatreya assumed the position of Minister of State for Labour and Employment, representing the party’s commitment to various portfolios.
- G. Kishan Reddy took charge as the Union Minister of Tourism, Culture, and Development of North Eastern Region of India, expanding the party’s presence in the national governance landscape.
Telangana Election 2023
Current Representatives: Making Their Mark
The BJP’s journey in Telangana is embodied by its incumbent members of both Parliament and Legislative Assembly, representing diverse constituencies and contributing to the political discourse:
Members of Parliament:
- Adilabad Constituency – Soyam Bapu Rao
- Karimnagar Constituency – Bandi Sanjay Kumar
- Nizamabad Constituency – Dharmapuri Arvind
- Secunderabad Constituency – G. Kishan Reddy
Members of Legislative Assembly:
- Huzurabad Constituency – Etela Rajendar
- Dubbak Constituency – Raghunandan Rao
In conclusion, the BJP’s voyage in Telangana has been marked by perseverance, adaptability, and strategic maneuvering. From its inception, the party has navigated through electoral dynamics, securing victories, and weathering challenges. With a dynamic leadership and a committed cadre, the BJP continues to script its narrative in Telangana’s political chronicles, contributing to the tapestry of the state’s democratic evolution.