Both the BJP and the Congress are trying to strengthen their organizational base in the state and corner the chief minister.
Opposition parties in Telangana are gearing up to corner the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) in the state. Both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Indian National Congress (INC) are trying to strengthen their organizational structure in the state in the run-up to the 2023 elections. Telangana would go for assembly election in 2023 and parliamentary elections in 2024. The BJP had recently organized a brainstorming session of its state office bearers and it had discussed how to strengthen the party from the ground level in Telangana ahead of a crucial by-election of Huzurabad Assembly constituency which will go to polls in the next few months. The party had also reviewed its defeat in Nagarjunasagar by-elections. In the recent meeting, the BJP framed a strategy to look for loopholes in the government’s functioning and its delivery mechanism. The party had decided to appoint convenors to 119 Assembly constituencies, 17 Parliamentary constituencies and other members in its frontal organizations. In the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the BJP won four seats in Telangana, its highest ever in the state and got 19.45% vote share, while in the Assembly election, it got only 7% votes.
Amod Ananth, a Hyderabad based political observer, said: “The BJP is trying to create a space for itself in the state. But, for any space, it needs to cross the 25% vote share. Many people in the state feel that the popularity of K.Chandrashekar Rao is on the decline. But, if the BJP had to capitalize on this, it needed to broaden its base in the rural areas of the state. It is an urban party as of now.”
BJP leaders argue that their social base has increased in the state. Senior BJP leader and state Vice President G. Manohar Reddy, said: “In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, we won four seats out of the 17 seats from the state. We performed well in the Greater Hyderabad municipal elections. Our organization is getting stronger day by day. The image of Narendra Modi and his pro-poor schemes had reached the remote interiors of the state. Hence, we will definitely defeat the ruling TRS in future.”
Other Opposition parties have also started their preparation for the Assembly and parliamentary elections. Recently, a Maha Dharna at Indira Park in Hyderabad had been organized by the Congress in which many Left parties joined.
The leaders who spoke included TPCC president A. Revanth Reddy, CPI national secretary K. Narayana and TJS president Prof M. Kodandarama and CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury. The new TPCC president A. Revanth Reddy had tried to energise the Congress cadres in the state by continuously attacking Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao and his family. “The success for the BJP or the Congress in Telangana would depend on who can unsettle KCR. The present CM tried to build an image that he is invincible, but nobody can evade anti-incumbency for long. The Congress is playing safe by going with young and old guards together. In the new PAC, which came after the appointment of A. Revanth Reddy as president, the party had included all Members of Legislative Assembly (MLAs) and Member of Parliament (MPs) in the team. But can the new president of the state Congress be a challenge for KCR? In the BJP, G. Kishan Reddy is New Delhi based. The party needs to use him more in the state to corner KCR as he had the potential.” Ananth added.