TDP set for a comeback in electoral battle

Warangal: The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) which stayed away from recent Lok Sabha elections is all set to make a comeback to electoral battle in the ensuing elections to the zilla and mandal parishad territorial constituencies.

After it faced a debacle in the elections to Telangana Assembly held in December 18, the TDP didn't dare to contest the Lok Sabha elections. However, it lent support to the Congress candidates from outside. It may be recalled here that TDP which forged a poll pact with the Congress, CPI and Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) made a vain attempt in the Assembly elections. The TDP barely managed to win just two seats although it contested in 13 seats in that election.

In a strategic stance, the TDP didn't contest the Lok Sabha elections, a first since its formation in 1982, to polarise anti-establishment vote in favour of Congress. To know whether TDP's ploy works or not, one has to wait till May 23. Meanwhile, the Election Commission (EC) and State Government is keen to hold elections to zilla and mandal parishad territorial constituencies in three phases. The EC is likely to issue notifications for the polls on April 22, April 26 and April 30.

Against this backdrop, the TDP district unit led by TDP Politburo Revuri Prakash Reddy had a brainstorming session on Monday, in which they discussed about the party's strategy in the ensuing ZPRTC and MPTC elections. The senior leaders felt that it was a dire necessity to field party candidates in the upcoming elections. Further they opined out that shying away from contest would send wrong signals to party workers.

Speaking to The Hans India, TDP Politburo member Revuri Prakash Reddy said: "Cashing in on Telangana sentiment, Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) came to power twice. This apart, the TRS carried a false campaign tagging TDP as Andhra party for its electoral gains. Despite this, the Telugu Desam is a cadre-based party and still commands a huge patronage in rural parts of the State."

He expressed confidence that despite money power of the ruling TRS, the TDP has better chances of doing well in the ZPTC and MPTC polls where local issues dominate. TDP is likely to contest all the ZPTC and MPTC seats in the region.

The TDP won six ZPTC and 115 MPTC in the previous elections held in erstwhile Warangal district in 2014. Although the Congress emerged as a single largest party in that poll with 24 ZPTC seats, the TRS managed to wrest the zilla parishad by allegedly poaching the members of other parties.

The break up: Congress 24; TRS 18; TDP six; one each to BJP and Independent in a total of 50 ZPTCs.

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