A seat that is every party's apple of eye
Hyderabad: The Secunderabad Lok Sabha constituency, one of the biggest Parliamentary constituencies in Telangana, with more than 19 lakh voters, has ke...
Hyderabad: The Secunderabad Lok Sabha constituency, one of the biggest Parliamentary constituencies in Telangana, with more than 19 lakh voters, has kept up its reputation as every political party's apple of eye. It continues to be the most sought-after seat, with many senior leaders belonging to ruling Telangana Rashtra Samiti, Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party once again throwing in their hat to contest from there. The numbers of ticket-seekers from the three parties are increasing by the day.
It is not easy for the BJP's veteran and four-time MP from Secunderabad Bandaru Dattatraya to get the party ticket as many leaders from Telangana BJP unit are seriously vying to test the waters in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. After his removal from the Union cabinet two years ago, Dattatreya has been facing tough time. Although the party has not given prominence to him, being the most senior leader around, he continues to hold sway in the Lok Sabha segment.
Party leaders say that BJP state unit president K Laxman and senior leader G Kishan Reddy are among the frontrunners to contest from the segment, considered a BJP stronghold in Telangana. This was the lone MP seat that the saffron party won in the 2014 elections. BJP national general Secretary P Muralidhar Rao is also ready to try his luck.
"BJP high command is inclined to give party tickets to all the sitting MPs, relaxing the age limit of 65 for the present elections. After ascertaining the winning prospects of Dattatreya, the party will take a final decision," a senior leader said.Kishan Reddy has been trying hard to get the party ticket through his political guru and Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu.
Laxman, having maintained close relations with party national president Amit Shah, is confident of getting the party ticket this time. The two leaders were defeated in the just-concluded Assembly elections. Telangana state Animal Husbandry Minister Talasani Srinivas Yadav has already started campaigning in support of his son T Saikiran Yadav, claiming the party supremo K Chandrashekhar Rao has given his nod.
Since all the seven assembly segments in the Secunderabad Lok Sabha constituency were won by TRS in the recent elections, the Minster is confident of his son's victory. The Lok Sabha segment's TRS in-charge Bandi Ramesh has also begun his campaigning, taking it for granted that he will be the party candidate. Another leader, D Vittal, is also leaving no stone unturned to grab the ticket.
From Congress, former Secunderabad MP and Greater Hyderabad party chief Anjan Kumar Yadav has already got an assurance from the party regarding his plan to contest the elections. TPCC working president Mohd Azaruddin is lobbying with the party high command, requesting leaders to finalise his name. He is not keen on contesting from the Hyderabad lok Sabha constituency, which is considered AIMIM party's fortress.
Former minister M Shashidhar Reddy is also ready to contest in the elections. Since he was denied party ticket in the Assembly elections, the senior leader is demanding that he be fielded as Congress candidate from the Lok Sabha segment. Leaders say that the three parties will finalise the names of candidates based on survey reports prepared by certain agencies.