The YSR Congress tried to put up a brave front after its “below par” performance in the municipal elections results announced on Monday. The party claimed that it has higher support base in the rural areas and said both the urban and rural local bodies’ polls were not fought on the planks of welfare, credibility and leadership.

“Both the municipal and panchayat raj bodies’ elections were fought basically on local issues and contesting candidates’ credentials. However, there’s going to be a marked difference in the MPTC/ZPTC results compared to the municipal results and the results of Assembly/Parliament seats will be altogether different,” explained senior leader of the party Dadi Veerabhadra Rao.

In the absence of official tally of results, the party has claimed that it has won 945 municipal wards and 121 corporation divisions in Seemandhra placing the the party’s control over 25 municipalities/nagar panchayats and two municipal corporations. However, another unofficial count put the YSR Congress’ tally in municipalities at 934 and in corporations at 122. They gave 19 municipalities and two corporations to the party.

“We are expecting to bag at least 35 municipalities and four corporations out of 93 and 7, respectively, in Seemandhra. But, lack of organisational set up and the hype created by TDP have helped it gain upper hand over YSR Congress. The hype helped TDP poll an additional 5 per cent vote,” official spokesperson of the party Gattu Ramachandra Rao explained. The party would analyse the results as to where its expectations had faltered, he noted.

Claiming that their party would have better results in MPTC/ZPTC polls and later in Assembly/Parliament elections, Mr. Ramachandra Rao recollected how TDP had done better in 2006 MTPC elections by getting 38 pc vote share against 31 pc in ZPTC polls, against 51 pc and 61 pc polled by the Congress. “The rural voters are with YSR Congress now owing to the charisma of Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy’s leadership and late Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy’s welfare schemes”, he said.

Another reason put forward by Mr. Veerabhadra Rao for the party’s subdued performance in Seemandhra is that the urban and rural local bodies’ elections is lack of organisational set up. The party has won only 10 municipal wards and one corporation division seat in Telangana.