TRS chief K Chandrasekhar Rao has fielded the daughter of former Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao as a party candidate for the upcoming Hyderabad-Rangareddy- Mahabubnagar graduate constituency for MLC elections, hoping to cash in to the sentiments of the electorate as the centenary of Rao is being celebrated this year.
This particular constituency is a tough one since the seat is currently being held by BJP’s N Ramchander Rao who is seeking reelection on 14 March.
For a long time there was political speculation that TRS might not field its own candidate choosing to support an independent candidate or nominate a party member. However, in the last minute the TRS chief named Surabhi Vani Devi an academician and an artist in her own right beside being the daughter of the former Prime Minister and the first CM of the unified state of Andhra Pradesh from Telangana region.
Rao has also taken initiative to celebrate the centenary of PV Narasimha Rao forcing the Congress to announce that it too will celebrate the birth anniversary in a befitting manner though it had so far shunned Rao and his legacy so far.
But by then the Telangana CM has usurped Rao’s legacy describing him as the “son of the soil” though it did not endear him to his ally AIMIM due to Rao’s role in the demolition of Babri Masjid.
By choosing to field Vani Devi, Rao hopes to cash in on the regional card as well as secure some of the votes of Congress since the former Prime Minister was a die hard Congressman.
Moreover, both the BJP candidate and the TRS candidate belong to the same community and hence Brahmin votes might get split with Vani Devi’s candidature.
As a founder of various educational institutions she will hope to draw educated voters since only graduates are eligible for voting in this constituency of the Upper House.
Significantly, there was speculation that the CM might send Vani Devi to the Upper House as governor’s nominee in November last year but he chose her to be his political trump card to challenge the BJP.
Vani Devi today filed her nomination.