Both rival TRS and BJP are keeping the names of Parkal bypoll contestants from their respective parties in suspense even after YSR Congress, Congress and Telugu Desam (TD)
announced their candidates before notification.
After the naming of a TD BC leader S. Samma Rao as Congress candidate, sources said both the rival TRS and BJP have been compelled to weigh the caste factor before naming their nominees.
However, senior BJP leader Bandaru Dattetreya denied caste as being an important factor in the bypoll when he addressed a press conference at BJP’s district party office at NGO’s Colony on Sunday afternoon, one hour before rival TRS held another press conference at their district office at Nakkalagutta.
“The Telangana statehood issue dominates over other factors like caste. We are not looking at the caste issue seriously,” he said, hinting that the party may opt for a non-BC candidate in Parkal.
So far, names of two BC contestants (S. Samma Rao of Congress and Konda Surekha of YSR Congress) and one from Reddy community (Telugu Desam’s Challa Dharma Reddy) have been announced.
The BC groups dominate the Parkal constituency comprising four mandals of Atmakur, Gesukonda, Parkal and Sangem.
There are indications that in the light of BC groups comprising the bulk of the 1.81 lakh voters and two other BC contestants from YSR Congress and the Congress, the TRS is likely to name a BC leader as its candidate for the bypoll.
Those who fit the bill include TRS’ Medak in- charge and party spokesperson K. Rajaiah Yadav and Muluguru Bhikshapathi, TRS Parkal in-charge.
Of the two, TRS sources said the chances of Mr Rajaiah Yadav, who is a native of Atmakur mandal, are bright, as his Yadava community comprises a good chunk of voters in contrast with Bhikshapathi’s small chunk of Varala community votes in constituency.
Besides, Mr Rajaiah Yadav’s 28 years of experience as a BJP man before he joined the TRS in 2001 is likely to be seen advantageous in his favour.
In contrast, the BJP is likely to choose between two Reddy community contestants.
They are Rao Padma Amarender Reddy, a former TRS Mahila district president and Dr P. Vijaya Chandra Reddy, a reputed orthopedic surgeon and IMA state president-elect, who has a long association with BJP since his student days.
Mr G. Premender Reddy, a two-time defeated candidate from Parkal and BJP’s earlier choice for the constituency has reportedly backed out from the ticket race.