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This Time It’s Sonia’s Guarantee For Congress In Telangana

The roads to Tuttuguda on the outskirts of Hyderabad were jam packed hours before the Congress rally was to begin.

Edited By : Pranjal Gupta | Updated: Sep 18, 2023 07:47 IST
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Sonia Gandhi
Sonia Gandhi
New Delhi, Sanjeev Trivedi: The roads to Tuttuguda on the outskirts of Hyderabad were jam packed hours before the Congress rally was to begin. The excitement was palpable with music and huge cutouts, so peculiar of politics in South India adorning the landscape. That the Congress rally had been organised at a massive scale was apparent.

Tuttuguda as the venue wasn’t the original plan. Telangana Congress people complain of the state government denying them permissions after which the farmers of Tuttuguda came forward and offered their land for the rally.
At the rally, Sonia Gandhi made a passionate plea that it was her dream to see a Congress Government in Telangana. She reminded the gathered crowd that it was the Congress team that turned the dream of Telangana into a reality by paving the way for the creation of the new state during the UPA 2 regime.
“Let us now elevate the state to the level it deserves”, said the former Congress President who was in Hyderabad despite the fact that she has almost stopped addressing public meetings.
The crowd listned in rapt attention as she went on to declare the six guarantees that the Congress promised to the people of Telangana if the Congress were to form the Government in the ensuing elections.
The electoral template of Guarantees had served superbly in Karnataka Polls and it was clear that Congress just wants to replicate the scene in the adjoining Telangana. Sonia announced the first three of the Guarantees aimed at the women voters.
These included the ‘Mahalakshmi Yojna’ that ensures Rs 2500 per month to every women head of the family in the state. This along with the promise of LPG cylinder just for Rs 500 and the promise of free travel to all the women in the state roadways across the state was meant to directly catch the attention of the women voters.
The second voter the Congress targeted was the Farmers. Sonia stepped aside and left the stage after making the announcement of the first three guarantees and it was now left to the Congress President Mallikarjuna Kharge to announce the other three guarantees.To counter KCR’s progg for the farmers, Congress has come up with ‘Rythu Bharosa’ which promises the landless labourers a some of Rs 12000 per annum. The small farmers and share croppers were promised Rs 15000 per month while a bonus of Rs 500 per was promised for the paddy growers.

Guarantee or Revadi? 

The ‘guarantee vs revdi’ debate appears to be weighing heavily against the BJP as it has not been able to devise a befitting response to the freebies that is being competively promised by KCR and the Congress in the state owing to PM’s aversion to the issue. But the so called ‘revdi’ had such a desired impact in Himachal and Karnataka that the Cong is leaving no stone unturned.
As for the political fortunes, talk to people on the street and they tell you how strong Chief Minister KCR still is. But when reminded of his daughter loss in the LS polls despite him being the CM, the very same people admit the chinks in KCR’s political armour of late.
That Congress is being taken as a serious competitor could be seen with KCR Govts ads covering the front pages of all the leading newspapers in the last 2-3 days, lest the Congress acquires the space. Both Amit Shah and AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi organising proggs. on the very day Sonia Gandhi was to make her speech was especially pointed to by the Congress.
KCR in 2018 won 83 seats out of the assembly’s strength of 119 and to repeat this feat will not be easy is the general refrain. An anti-incumbancy of 10 years coupled with Kavitha’s queationing by the ED in Delhi Liquor Scam have not augured well for the BRS.
Still people believe that KCR will scape through with the tacit support of Owaisi’s party and some hard decisions by denying tickets to at least a quarter of his MLAs. The polls however are 3 months away and this as they say is a long time in politics.
Earlier in the day on Sunday, the Congress CWC sat again in an extended format with state leaders also joining in. The strategy for the election going states was discussed and it was affirmed that Congress won’t allow the seat-sharing logic being put forward by the other INDIA bloc partners.
Rahul Gandhi made an interesting point which he repeated both at the extended CWC meet and the Tuttuguda public meet on Sunday evening which caught the attention of many. He said at both the places that he has been observing and is forced to say that KCR and Owaisi were working along with the BJP and the trio want to somehow retain KCR’s hold on the state.
He asked Congress people to identify the enemy as knowing and recognising the enemy was necessary to win the battle. The fight, according to him, was getting closer and better for the Congress with every passing day.
Since he criss-crossed eight districts and roughly 470 kms of Telangana during his Bharat Jodo Yatra, his words for the Congressmen have the authority of a strategist. The two day Congress progg in Hyderabad has in the least conveyed that Telangana electorally is still an open race and that is good for democracy in the state.

First published on: Sep 18, 2023 07:47 AM IST

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