Political temperature heats up in Hyderabad ahead of BJP meet, Presidential elections

The political environment has dramatically changed from wet, chilly monsoon to “scorching hot” in Hyderabad and Telangana in view of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s first-ever National Executive meeting in Hyderabad under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In fact, Hyderabad will host national leaders and events from 1 to 4 July, and the city’s lung space will be splashed with posters and cut-outs of politicians!

By CR Gowri Shanker  Published on  30 Jun 2022 12:54 PM GMT
Political temperature heats up in Hyderabad ahead of BJP meet, Presidential elections

Hyderabad: The political environment has dramatically changed from wet, chilly monsoon to "scorching hot" in Hyderabad and Telangana in view of the Bharatiya Janata Party's first-ever National Executive meeting in Hyderabad under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

In fact, Hyderabad will host national leaders and events from 1 to 4 July, and the city's lung space will be splashed with posters and cut-outs of politicians!

Besides, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who will be staying in Hyderabad for two days for the first time, Union Home minister Amit Shah, BJP national leaders, and Opposition Presidential candidate Yashwanth Sinha will be in Hyderabad on 2 July to seek the support of the ruling TRS and its ally MIM for the Presidential polls. TRS is opposing the NDA nominee.

Another major event is the NASSCOM GCC conclave which will be chaired by Telangana IT and municipal administration minister K.T Rama Rao.

The cool and wet monsoon season of Hyderabad has turned hot due to the spree of political events and war of words and posters between TRS and BJP.

Never in the past has a political event turned into a battleground between rival political parties on the eve of a political event of one party.

One of the main reasons for the rise in the political temperature in Hyderabad and Telangana is the BJP's national executive meeting scheduled from 1 to 4 July. TRS leadership headed by Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao and his party leaders feel that the BJP's agenda is to dethrone the TRS government at any cost and the meeting in the city will lay the road map.

His guess is right. BJP has set its eyes on "Target Telangana and South" from Hyderabad, and it is doing so openly. Union Home minister Amit Shah, Telangana BJP president Bandi Sanjay, and other BJP leaders' vociferous attack on Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao and TRS sends a clear message: "We want Telangana."

Though the foundation was laid in 2017 when Amit Shah visited Hyderabad and Nalgonda district, the party could not fare well in Telangana. However, it continued to pursue its agenda and was partially successful in the Dubbak, GHMC, and Huzurabad by-elections.

For the first time, not only a war of words but also a poster and multimedia (social media) war between the ruling TRS and BJP has engulfed Hyderabad city in the run-up to the BJP's national executive meet.

Over the years, any political party that held meetings in Hyderabad, including Congress, Telugu Desam, TRS, BJP, AIMIM, CPI, CPM, BSP, and others, publicise their party's achievements and hail their leaders. But never have parties abused and put counter posters against each other over a meeting. It shows the animosity between TRS and BJP – the former sees it as a threat to its existence in Telangana and rightly so going by the manner in which BJP state president Bandi Sanjay and others are attacking KCR and his team. The attack has turned personal!

If BJP put up the "Saalu Dora-Selavu Dora" countdown clock and posters targeting KCR, TRS hit back with "Saalu Modi, Sampaku Modi" (Bye Bye Modi).

Interestingly, TRS has also put up posters across Hyderabad listing the achievements of the TRS government under KCR ahead of the BJP national event!

In fact, the political environment has become charged since the appointment of BJP president Bandi Sanjay and TPCC president A. Revanth Reddy. The young leaders have gone hammer and tongs against each other and against Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao who is feeling the heat from both parties.

Added to this is the Maharashtra turmoil where rebel Shiv Sena MLAs dethroned Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray with the support of BJP. This has vitiated the environment in Telangana, too, where BJP is targeting TRS.

The presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home minister Amit Shah, BJP national president J.P Nadda, and other bigwigs of the BJP in Hyderabad has led to an "orange alert."

Immediately after the announcement of the BJP national executive meet, clever TRS leaders blocked a big chunk of metro pillars and other vantage points to publicise the TRS government and Chief Minister KCR's achievements, leaving little space for the BJP national meet.

As a counter, BJP put up the KCR countdown clock and posters and TRS followed suit which led to a poster war for the first time of this magnitude.

As per the BJP, the four-day meet will begin with a roadshow on 1 July led by BJP national president J.P Nadda where Telangana art and culture, Telangana movement, and others will be on display. This will be followed by a meet of national secretaries. On 2 and 3 July, the national executive will meet where Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other bigwigs like Amit Shah will lay the road map for the party for Telangana and the country for the next Assembly and general elections.

All eyes are on Prime Minister Modi's "Vijay Sankalp Sabha," a public meeting to be held at the Parade Grounds on 3 July, where he will spell out the party's agenda for the Assembly elections and general elections and seek the support of the people for the victory of BJP in the country, especially in southern states like Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, and Puducherry.

Mr. Modi, during his last visit to Hyderabad, had highlighted the dangers of family rule, indirectly targeting KCR and his family-run TRS. This time he may directly target him!

BJP is also likely to give a communal touch by visiting the Bhagyalakshmi temple at Charminar, which has been a bone of contention between BJP and MIM and other Muslim groups since the temple is attached to Charminar. Many Muslim organisations have called the temple "illegal" and demanded its demolition. As a counter, BJP is also seeking the opening of the closed masjid inside Charminar which is under the Centre's Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and is a protected monument.

For the first time, Mr. Modi will camp in Hyderabad for two days – on the first day there will be a meeting of national general secretaries and national president J.P Nadda will open an exhibition.

The two-day meet will be held at Hyderabad International Convention Centre HICC. It was in 2004 that the last BJP national executive meet was held in Hyderabad.

"Besides party's road map for Assembly polls to be held in several states this year and next, 2024 general elections will be reviewed and a road map laid," said BJP Central coordinator Balraj Nune.

State BJP president Bandi Sanjay has been sending recorded messages to make the Prime Minister's public meeting "Vijay Sankalp Sabha" at Parade Grounds, Secunderabad, a grand success. He expects 10 lakh people to attend.

"We will win in Telangana in the next polls under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. This inefficient and corrupt TRS government has to go. The Centre is ready to help the TRS government but the latter is defaming the Centre. KCR is unable to digest the growth of the BJP in Telangana. Our aim is to remove "Kalvakuntla Rajyam" and have "Ambedkar Rajyam." If elections are held now, BJP will come to power as per the latest surveys. TRS and Congress may contest jointly in the next polls and KCR, who is unable to pay the salaries of government employees due to financial crisis, may go for a snap poll," said Bandi Sanjay.

Hyderabad will certainly be on national and international political radar come July!

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