After today’s results showing the Telangana Rashtra Samiti on a weaker wicket compared to Congress, the TRS has reason to be happy that the Supreme Court stayed the declaration of the results until now as, otherwise, they would have influenced its chances in general elections if announced earlier.
The elections to municipalities were held on March 30 and the counting of votes was to be taken up on April 2 as per schedule. On a petition requesting that the results of municipal elections should not be announced ahead of Assembly and Lok Sabha elections in the State on April 30 and May 7, the Supreme Court directed that the announcement be made only after May 7. This was a big boon to the TRS considering its weakness in urban local bodies.
The TRS politburo member B. Vinod Kumar agreed that the leadership of the party in municipalities was lagging behind and that was the reason for its poor showing in the elections. He said local issues dominated municipal elections but the party did not have a machinery to take them up.
However, he said, the results were no reflection on the party’s performance in general elections.
The TRS won only 8 municipalities against 21 by Congress out of 53 in the region. The party did not win a single ward in Sattupalli and Madhira municipalities of Khammam, Bhongir, Kodad and Huzurnagar of Nalgonda and Pedda Amberpet and Badangpet of Ranga Reddy district. The TRS was also trailing behind Congress in Ramagundam and Nizamabad municipal corporations but reversed the trend in Karimnagar.
What is more shocking is that the TRS won nine whereas Telugu Desam won ten in Gajwel Nagar Panchayat which is part of Gajwel Assembly constituency where the party president K. Chandrasekhar Rao is in the fray.
Mr. Rao had three days ago expressed displeasure at the declaration of results to local bodies at this stage when the fate of contestants in Assembly and Parliament elections was to be decided.
The TRS had also done poorly in the urban and rural local body elections last time in 2005 and 2006 respectively when the party went alone as now.
The party won only two municipalities and 75 wards last time. This time, it has won 313 wards but still way behind the tally of Congress which is 526.