Battle for Telangana: The Congress-BRS Tug of War Intensifies as Leaders Convene for 'Constituency Development

Battle for Telangana: The Congress-BRS Tug of War Intensifies as Leaders Convene for 'Constituency Development

09-02-2024

In the vibrant political tapestry of Telangana, the Congress orchestrates a narrative of skepticism concerning the Bharat Rashtra Samiti's (BRS) potency as the parliamentary elections draw near, magnetizing figures from the opposition. The narrative thickens with Patnam Mahender Reddy, a distinguished BRS MLC and erstwhile Minister, as the latest to enter the fray.

 

In a move that ignited the corridors of speculation, he convened with Chief Minister A. Revanth Reddy within the confines of his Hyderabad abode, hinting at a possible defection from BRS. The presence of his consort, Sunita Mahender Reddy, who helms the Vikarabad District Zilla Parishad, alongside Health Minister Damodar Rajanarsimha and governmental advisor Vem Narender Reddy, further dispelled any ambiguity regarding their allegiance shift.

 

The quest for the Chevella Lok Sabha berth seems to be the Mahender duo's ambition, with Congress showing alacrity in this pursuit, facing a dearth of formidable challengers against the BJP's presumable nominee, Konda Vishweshwar Reddy, and BRS's incumbent, G. Ranjit Reddy. This electoral battlefield falls under the stewardship of CM Revanth Reddy, post a strategic distribution of responsibilities among the party's elders.

 

Mahender Reddy's potential departure casts a shadow over BRS, particularly within the Rangareddy district, where his influence is profound. His tenure as a Minister under both the Telugu Desam and BRS regimes has solidified his stature as a pivotal figure. His family's dominion over the political and administrative realms during these times is well documented, with his wife Sunita wielding considerable influence as the ZP Chairperson of Ranga Reddy district, even under the Telugu Desam government.

 

The narrative took an intriguing turn when his brother, Patnam Narender Reddy, emerged victorious as an MLA from Kodangal in 2018, unseating the current Chief Minister A. Revanth Reddy. However, in a dramatic reversal, Revanth Reddy reclaimed his stronghold in the 2023 elections by a significant margin.

 

Despite Mahender Reddy's 2018 electoral setback in Tandur to Congress's novice, Pilot Rohit Reddy, the BRS leadership recognized his potential, securing his election to the Legislative Council. Anticipation for the Tandur ticket in the 2023 elections loomed, with rumors of his Congress allegiance if overlooked. To mollify him, KCR accorded him a cabinet position just before the assembly polls.

 

The possibility of a BRS exodus, catalyzed by such encounters, looms large. The congregation with CM Revanth Reddy could presage a broader realignment, potentially drawing a significant faction from Ranga Reddy to Congress in anticipation of the parliamentary elections.

 

Despite BRS's attempts to downplay the political implications of these meetings, it's evident that Congress is strategically positioning itself, targeting influential leaders to dilute BRS's stronghold.

 

The rendezvous of Mahender Reddy follows closely on the heels of meetings between four BRS MLAs from the unified Medak district and CM Revanth Reddy, culminating in a meeting with Rajendranagar MLA T Prakash Goud. These developments have unsettled BRS, particularly as Medak, a bastion of KCR and his nephew T Harish Rao, remained a solitary success story in rural Telangana during the assembly elections.

 

The subsequent clarification by the four BRS MLAs, positing the meetings as developmental overtures for Medak, did little to quell the ripples of speculation.

 

Adding to BRS's discomfiture, Peddapalli's incumbent MP, Venkatesh Netha, transitioned to Congress, alleging a covert alliance between BRS and BJP for the parliamentary elections, a pact he could not countenance.

 

This political theatre is further enriched by the defection of former BRS Deputy Mayor and GHMC Corporator, Baba Fasiuddin, to Congress, voicing grievances over unfulfilled electoral promises by BRS's leadership, thus painting a complex picture of shifting allegiances and political strategies as Telangana inches closer to the parliamentary showdown.

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