March 17, 2021 10:09:15 am
Another high-intensity battle is on the cards in Telangana as the Election Commission of India Tuesday announced a byelection to the Nagarjuna Sagar assembly constituency to be held on April 17. The election was necessitated due to the sudden demise of sitting MLA Nomula Narsimhaiah on December 1 last year.
According to ECI, the gazette notification will be issued on March 23 and the nomination process will begin on the same day. Nominations will be scrutinized the next day. The last date for withdrawal of candidature is April 3. After polling on April 17, votes will be counted on May 2.
Winning the election to Nagarjuna Sagar seat is crucial for all the three major parties- TRS, BJP, and Congress. After suffering a shocking setback in the byelection for the Dubbak assembly segment in November last, which the TRS was confident of winning riding on a sympathy wave following the sudden demise of its two-time MLA Solipeta Ramalinga Reddy, the ruling party is wary of the threat from an emerging BJP. A win in Nagarjuna Sagar is necessary for the TRS to reinforce itself.
Meanwhile, the BJP is gaining strength on the ground and is pitting itself against the TRS as the main challenger as it wants to keep the momentum going. The BJP was able to challenge the TRS during the election to Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation’s council after its victory in Dubbak. It had successfully managed to bring down TRS from 100 to 58 wards while upping its numbers from 4 to 48 wards compared to five years ago.
On Tuesday, the Congress party named veteran leader K Jana Reddy as its candidate for the seat. Reddy has been a legislator from Nagarjuna Sagar for seven terms before he lost to Narsimhaiah in 2018. It is a do-or-die situation for Congress which has been on a continuous decline since the formation of a separate Telangana state.
In the present state legislative assembly, TRS enjoys a massive majority with 102 of the 119 MLAs. Asaduddin Owaisi’s AIMIM has 7 MLAs, whereas Congress has 6 MLAs. The BJP has two and TDP has one MLA.
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