CPI wants Congress to concede 17 seats, most of them represented by Congress MLAs, in Nalgonda, Khammam, Karimnagar and Warangal districts.

Congress leaders in close to a dozen Assembly constituencies in Nalgonda, Khammam, Karimnagar and Warangal districts are spending anxious moments after it became clear that the party is close to sealing an electoral pact with the CPI in the next few days.

What is causing consternation among these leaders is the demand of the CPI to concede as many as 17 seats, several of which are represented by Congress MLAs. Tension is mounting among the Congress leaders in Munugode and Devarakonda (Nalgonda), Kothagudem, Wyra and Pinapaka (both ST) (Khammam), Wardhannapet (Warangal) and Husnabad (Karimnagar) and other constituencies, which are represented by the CPI legislators.

There is severe heartburn among the Congress aspirants in Munugode and Devarakonda Assembly constituencies and Nalgonda parliamentary seat. Rajya Sabha member Palvai Goverdhan Reddy is irked at the hurdle that is likely to impact the launch of his daughter Sravanthi into politics from Munugode. Devarakonda MLA Balu Naik reportedly got a hint about the tie-up and filed his nomination for the post of Chintapalli ZPTC member with an eye on the ZP chairman’s post.

However, it is learnt that the aspirants would be given nominated posts once the Congress comes to power. The Munugode seat is presently represented by CPI MLA Ujjini Yadagiri Rao. It is said the party is insisting on the Nalgonda parliamentary constituency also which was won by Gutha Sukhender Reddy of the Congress.

In Khammam, even as the CPI district council has staked strong claim for its two sitting Assembly seats -- Kothagudem and Wyra (ST) -- besides its stronghold - Pinapaka (ST) and a few other seats during parleys with the Congress for electoral pact, the party’s move has perplexed the party ticket aspirants in the said constituencies.

CPI represents the Kothagudem and Wyra seats. The CPI district leadership has made it clear that it will not leave the Kothagudem, Wyra and Pinapaka Assembly segments as part of electoral pact and Khammam Lok Sabha seat. Party’s insistence has left the Congress ticket aspirants in quandary.

District Congress Committee president and former Minister Vanama Venkateswara Rao, a close follower of RS member Renuka Chowdary is the strong contender for the Kothagudem seat. Interestingly, Ms. Chowdary is aspiring to contest from Khammam Lok Sabha seat which is being sought by the CPI as part of the prospective electoral tie-up. Speculations are rife that the CPI may field veteran party leader Puvvada Nageswara Rao from Khammam seat.

Poll tie-up may cost dearly for the Wardhannapet Congress MLA Kondeti Sridhar if the seat goes to the CPI. There were half-a-dozen aspirants from the Congress party including the sitting MLA. The CPI won the Mahabubabad and Parkal in the past, though it has nominal presence in Wardhannapet. It is pressing for the seat as there were no strong leaders from any party including the TRS. The CPI plans to bag the seat with the help of Congress party.

The Congress may have to forgo the Husnabad seat, which is represented by A. Praveen Reddy, if the alliance materialises.

In 2004, the CPI had retained the seat but lost it to the Congress in 2009. Meanwhile, the Congress leaders have decided to oppose the alliance and are determined to contest as rebels.