Owing to widespread protests from within the party and from allies, Congress has deferred announcement of candidates by at least two more days. While Congress High Command had already finalised names of candidates for 74 constituencies and planned to release the list, extensive protests by ticket aspirants and differences with allies over the past two days has forced it to review the selection of candidates.
Re-negotiations with allies were also not resolved, pushing the grand old party to defer the announcement of list. “The allegations made by those who did not get tickets are baseless. I have not taken money from anyone to give tickets. The fears expressed by BC leaders are also unfounded. We will give tickets to at least 25 BCs and ensure that leaders from all sections get representation. After reviewing once again, Congress candidates first list will be announced on November 12 or 13,” screening committee chief Bhakta Charan Das said speaking in Delhi.
As top leaders from AICC and TPCC were taken aback due to spurt in dissent, in spite of preventive measures, more ticket aspirants from across Telangana stormed Gandhi Bhavan on Saturday. While dissenters from Khanapur constituency continued their protest for the second day, demanding not to give ticket to Ramesh Rathod, who recently joined Congress, aspirants from several constituencies like Nakrekal, Uppal, Malkajgiri held protests at Gandhi Bhavan fearing denial of tickets.
Protests turned violent when a Congress worker from Uppal tried to pour petrol and immolate self, demanding not to allot Uppal constituency to TDP. The rebel trouble has escalated so much that TPCC has asked police to increase security at Gandhi Bhavan. Congress insiders opine that several senior leaders were behind these protests, as they are working to get more tickets to their aides, to boost their chances for CM post, in case party wins.
While Congress top bosses had enough to deal within the party, even allies continued to build pressure. CPI, TJS and TDP leaders met to discuss seat sharing and had also negotiated with TPCC chief Uttam and RC Khuntia, but no final agreement was reached.
“Congress had initially agreed to give five seats. But without consulting allies, announced the seat sharing details. It was we who initiated alliance and it is the responsibility of Congress to oblige the allies’ requests and keep the Grand alliance united,” CPI state secretary Chada Venkat Reddy said after Grand Alliance meeting.
In the wake of extensive dissent within the party and disagreement with allies, AICC has decided to take more time to announce candidates. #KhabarLive