Names Palvai, Renuka Chowdary, Anand Bhaskar and K. Chiranjeevi

The Congress' central leadership sprang a surprise by nominating senior Telangana leader Palvai Goverdhan Reddy and APCC general secretary Rapolu Anand Bhaskar as the party candidates, who were not at all in the reckoning.

Former Union Minister Renuka Chowdary and erstwhile Praja Rajyam chief K. Chiranjeevi are the other two nominees. Loyalty to AICC president, Sonia Gandhi appeared to have played key role in finalisation of these candidates.

Mr. Chiranjeevi was named as the nominee as part of the agreement he had with the high command after merging his party.

Mr. Anand Bhaskar, a BC leader from Padmasali community is a close aide of former PCC chief D. Srinivas and a key figure at Gandhi Bhavan, the Congress party headquarters. Ms. Chowdary's proximity to Ms. Gandhi and demand that representation be given to the Kamma community seems to have led to her selection.

Party leaders maintained that the high command had the final say in the selection while the Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy and APCC chief Botcha Satyanarayana had little role.

TDP nominees

Meanwhile, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) finalised the names of C.M. Ramesh and T. Devender Goud as its candidates for the Rajya Sabha elections.