The pink party's lean man does it again

K Chandrashekhar Rao

"The Congress has carried Chandrababu Naidu on its shoulders from Andhra to beat the lean man. Telangana had driven Naidu to Amaravati. Do we really need him now?" was what K Chandrashekhar Rao told the people of Telangana during the campaign.

It was this argument by the TRS chief that ultimately won him a second term with such a massive victory.

KCR, who had dissolved the state Assembly on September 6, nine months before term ended, had been nailing TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu to beat the Congress.

KCR had kick-started his campaign from Kongarkalan planning to submit a four-and-a-half year progress report, called the Pragathi Nivedana Sabha, but later realised that people need much more than a lackluster report card.

He began unleashing a tirade against Naidu for allegedly trying to stall all irrigation projects in the state, which will leave Telangana high and dry.

He even made public letters, purportedly written by Naidu to the Centre, urging to halt the Telangana projects. 

KCR’s argument clicked. The fear of Naidu deciding the future of Telangana sitting in Amaravati made voters ignore unfulfilled promises made to the people before the 2014 elections.

KCR's offer of increased social benefits, unemployment dole, completion of projects and drinking water schemes worked well in his favour.

The scheme for a Rs 10,000 per acre cash input and an insurance of Rs 5 lakh for farmers helped win over rural hearts. The Congress’ promise of a waiver of up to Rs 2 lakh failed to win over farmers.

The Congress, which roped in UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi to address a public meeting in Medchal, failed to convert the sentiments of the different sections of Telangana into votes. It even lost the Medchal seat.

The Congress and TDP had held road shows in the state, which chiefs Rahul Gandhi and Naidu addressed together, but these focused on Narendra Modi instead of the local issues likely to impact Assembly elections.

The BJP, which contested in 118 out of 119 Assembly seats, also failed to make dent to the TRS fortress.

Despite a big push from Modi, who addressed three massive public meetings, and party chief Amit Shah's several rounds of campaign, the saffron party, which had five seats in the dissolved Assembly, won only two this time.

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The pink party's lean man does it again


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