One of the biggest wards, Rajendranagar is a mix of urban, rural households

TRS candidate Korani Srilatha campaigning in Rajendranagar.  

Rajendranagar, ward no. 60, is one of the biggest among the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC)’s 150 wards that will go to poll on December 1. Sprawled on the southern bank of Musi river and spilling beyond the PVNR Expressway, it is a mix of rural and urban households.

Its sheer size can be gauged from where the ward stretches from TS Police Firing Range on the south to Doctors’ Colony on the banks of the Musi in the north. It stretches from WALMTARI in the west to Shivrampally in the east. Some of the most prestigious central institutions are located in the ward including NIRD, NAARM, Agriculture College, Veterinary University and National Fisheries Development Board.

In this vast area are apartment complexes, row houses as well as age-old homes with courtyards and tiled roofs.

The ward is reserved for SC (woman). During the 2016 GHMC elections, Korani Srilatha triumphed over her rival by securing 10,701 votes or 51.25% of the total votes polled. This year, there are 47,240 electors with 22,750 women forming a sizeable and decisive chunk for the ward that is reserved for women. “We have all the projects planned. I am promising a continuation of ongoing work,” says Srilatha during her door-to-door campaigning. Surrounded by men, the candidate is barely visible as they move from one house to another. Once the group reaches a home, Srilatha dives for the feet of the older people asking for their blessings and vote. The families radiate a sense of awe as the politician blends familiarity with respect.

Congress’ Bathula Divya, who hails from a political family, has promised to solve the issues of drainage and roads. Her door-to-door campaign includes reaching out to families and applying ‘kumkum bottu’ to women and doing ‘namaskar’ to other family members.

BJP has fielded Archana Jayprakash, who is also promising solving civic issues as her supporters keep up a constant chant of Bharat Mata Ki Jai.

All the three candidates have kept their focus on neighbourhoods that are densely populated and have poor infrastructure. Areas like Yerrabodda, Upparpally, Budvel, and Yadavreddy Nagar with their poor urban infrastructure of sewerage lines assembled largely by residents and homes where the inner roads are not smooth are a happy hunting ground for votes. A relic of an older period are small GHMC parks, which have now been encroached by land sharks.

But there are other concerns that are being raised by residents.

“We didn’t get the promised ₹10,000 that many families got though their houses were not submerged,” says Lakshmamma, who does maggam work in Reddy Basti near Upparpally. While the ₹10,000 flood relief money has been distributed in many localities that were flooded, the figures for Rajendranagar were not available. And the contest remains open.

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2021 7:02:37 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/one-of-the-biggest-wards-rajendranagar-is-a-mix-of-urban-rural-households/article33180343.ece

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