In Telangana, opposition grand alliance reaches seat-sharing agreement

After several rounds of hectic deliberations, the four alliance partners of the Maha Kootami (grand alliance) in Telangana on Thursday came to an agreement on sea-sharing for the December 7 assembly elections.

Congress general secretary in-charge of Telangana affairs RC Khuntia announced in New Delhi that the Congress would contest 94 seats in the 119-member assembly, leaving 25 seats for the allies – 14 for the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), eight for Telangana Jana Samithi and three for Communist Party of India.

In effect, however, the Congress will be contesting only in 93 seats, as it allotted one seat to Telangana Inti Party president Cheruku Sudhakar. “He would be contesting on the Congress symbol, as his party has not got the official symbol from Election Commission,” the Congress leader said.

Khuntia said the first list of 74 Congress candidates, along with that of Maha Kootami partners, would be released in New Delhi on Saturday morning. “We are in the process of finalizing the candidates for the remaining 20 seats and it would be done shortly,” he said.

In the morning, the TDP’s Telangana leaders met party president N Chandrababu Naidu at Amaravati and discussed the Congress’s offer allocating 14 assembly seats for the party. “While there is no issue with regard to the number of seats, discussions are still going on with regard to a couple of seats for which both the TDP and the Congress are staking claim,” Telangana TDP leader and former MP Ravula Chandrasekhar Reddy said.

He said Maha Kootami would be a reality and was going to give sleepless nights to the Telangana Rashtra Samithi.

TJS president M Kodandaram did hard bargaining for at least 10 seats, but was forced to remain content with eight seats. “We have asked for those seats where we have the strength to win,” a TJS leader said on condition of anonymity.

The CPI, which was offered three seats by the Congress, is demanding at least another two seats, but the Congress is firm. In lieu of the assembly seats, the Congress offered the Left party two seats in the legislative alliance in the coming days.

First Published: Nov 08, 2018 21:03 IST

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