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Assembly Elections 2018: KCR retains power in Telangana



K Chandrashekhar Rao TRS

Hyderabad, Dec 12: A huge swing of votes in its favour helped Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) to score landslide victory in Telangana Assembly elections, according to poll officials.

The regional party on Tuesday polled about 46.9 per cent votes winning 88 seats in the 119-member Assembly. It garnered a little over 97 lakh votes.

Result Status

Status Known For 119 out of 119 Constituencies
Party Won Leading Total
Bharatiya Janata Party 1 0 1
Indian National Congress 19 0 19
All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimeen 7 0 7
Telangana Rashtra Samithi 88 0 88
Telugu Desam 2 0 2
All India Forward Bloc 1 0 1
Independent 1 0 1
Total 119 0 119


As per media reports, K Chandrashekhar Rao will take oath as the Chief Minister of Telangana tomorrow.

Congress party’s vote share was 28.4 per cent (58.83 lakh) winning 19 seats while the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) secured 3.5 per cent votes (7.25 lakh) with two seats. The Congress had contested 94 seats and TDP 13.The Congress-led four party People’s Front polled 32.8 per cent votes (67.95 lakh) but finished with just 21 seats.

Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) and the Communist Party of India (CPI), which drew a blank, got only 0.5 per cent and 0.4 per cent votes respectively.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which contested all seats on its own and got only one seat, polled 7 per cent votes (14.50 lakh).

The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM), which won seven out of eight seats it contested in Hyderabad, polled 2.7 per cent votes (5.61 lakh).

Among other parties, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) polled 2.1 per cent, Bahujan Left Front 0.7 per cent, Forward Block 0.8 per cent, Communist Party of India-Marxist 0.4 per cent and Independents 3.3 per cent.

Forward Block bagged one seat while one Independent was also elected.

According to Election Commission, 1.1 per cent voters (2.24 lakh) exercised the NOTA (None Of The Above) option.

Out of 2.8 crore voters in the state, 73.2 per cent had cast their votes in the elections held on December 7. There was an increase of 4 per cent in the polling compared to 2014 elections.

The TRS had polled 33 per cent votes bagging 63 seats in 2014. Thus its vote share has increased substantially, reflecting in its victory in majority of the constituencies with huge margin.

This time the vote share of Congress also increased by 4 per cent but this was not sufficient to stop TRS juggernaut.

TDP had contested 2014 elections in alliance with TDP, winning 15 seats with a vote share of 14 per cent.

The BJP’s vote share remained unchanged at 7 per cent but its number of seats came down to one from 5 in the previous elections.



Priyanka’s appointment Congress’ internal matter, poses no challenge: Rajnath



rajnath singh

Lucknow, Jan 24 : Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday made light of appointment of Priyanka Gandhi Vadra as the Congress’s General Secretary in-charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh and termed it an “internal matter” of that party.

On a three-day visit to his parliamentary constituency Lucknow, the former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister said that he does look upon the Congress as a challenge in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

“Priyanka Gandhi has now been formally tasked with some assignment though she has been active in politics for the last 15-20 years,” he said, adding that all attempts by the Congress to win back public support will fall flat as the BJP-led NDA government has worked relentlessly and the development is there for all to see.

“People have seen our work in the past four years… We have not only initiated new projects and rolled out new welfare schemes but also completed projects that were pending for decades,” the Union Minister said.

“The thinking of the BJP is too big to think of Congress as a challenge,” he added.

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We will continue to use EVMs, VVPATs: CEC Sunil Arora



Sunil Arora

New Delhi, Jan 24: Amid ongoing controversy over Electronic Voter Machines, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora on Thursday made it clear that EVMs and VVPATs will be used for the upcoming 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

“I would like to make it very clear that we are not going back to the era of ballot papers”, said Arora while addressing an event in the national capital.

The Chief Election Commissioner further stated that the poll panel will continue to use EVMs and VVPATs.

In wake of EVM Hackathon, Arora Said “We are open to any criticism and feedback from any stakeholder including political parties”.

“At the same time, we are not going to be intimidated, bullied or coerced into giving up these and start era of ballot papers” he added.

His statement comes days after a row triggered by a ‘hackathon’ was conducted in London by a US-based self-proclaimed cyber expert.

The “cyber expert”, named Syed Shuja, had made a sensational claim that the 2014 general elections were rigged.


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‘Operation Shakti’ in the vanguard of Congress march to LS polls




New Delhi, Jan 21 : To understand what was at the core of Operation Shakti, IANS caught up with its centrifuge Praveen Chakravarty to understand what the Congress was attempting for the BJP had them on the run till recently.

As he says, “I was quite sanguine initially on this whole metamorphosis but when I saw the Congress President calling a worker by name and talking to him and the response that he was getting, I realised that the wisdom of the crowds could not be faulted, involve the people in everything which is the real offshoot of true democracy or peoplecracy.

“That is how 30,000 people were surveyed in Delhi to find out who should be Congress President for Delhi.

“In fact every candidate was selected in the three north and middle India states using this interface, including the Chief Ministers. The template being ‘Wisdom of the Crowds’, a seminal book by James Surowiecki, New Yorker business columnist with boundless erudition explores the simple idea of large groups of people are smarter than an elite few, no matter how brilliant and better at solving problems, fostering innovation, coming to wise decisions and even predicting the future.

“Data is available, my experience and expertise as a political scientist helped and one found over a six month period that data is pure gold and that is what one needed to plug and play into.”

Apparently, the Congress President is an extraordinary believer in the objectivity of data and the primacy of this being the gold standard to crack the election code.

Chakravarty, a former Goldman Sachs Wall Street banker — who worked with Nandan Nilekani in the past in UIDAI and then in Manmohan Singh’s PMO — the Wharton-educated data scientist known as ‘Chucky’ says, “We have learned a lot from these state elections — what worked, what didn’t — and have started transposing this learning for the Lok Sabha elections.

“Plans are now afoot to craft our campaign accordingly, this is work in progress and it it will be done after collecting ground zero feedback from multiple locations.

“It will be ground up in terms of choice of candidate, mediums of communication, issues at hand, the whole ball of wax. All my output goes directly to the Congress President only. He then gives direction on the way forward.”

The battle of 2019 will be fought across 2,00,000 polling booths and the issues will vary from place to place.

For instance in the state elections, just to give a flavour, the Congress found that landless farmers and youth were livid over in DeMo in Bhopal. Upper caste wanted reservation somewhere else etc.

Chucky studied at BITS Pilani and worked with IBM in Japan and at Microsoft on Windows 95 and did his Masters from Wharton before plunging into the high jinks world of investment banking only to move back to India in 2005.

His belief is that there is no general election in India, it is a sum of parts as 29 states go to the polls at the same time.

As he added, “National election is a myth. Our approach is to attack each state differently for every state has myriad problems. Our incessant surveys and people inputs have shown us that Notebandi resulted in a scarcity of jobs, it transcended across class, gender, economic strata. It’s overnight announcement in that it became law as of midnight November 8, broke the back of the people in this country.”

The Congress is buoyant on its Gabbar Singh Tax stratagem which it claims has worked. They will take on an incumbent in Narendra Modi but a defiant Prime Minister whose people connect skills are unquestionable. Somewhere in this convoluted narrative, the Congress is expected to focus on the economy for it reckons that the economy is resembling a shipwreck.

At the vanguard of the Congress electioneering campaign will be “scarcity of jobs, pricing erosion for farmers, ever-lowering demand for MSMES, another casualty of ‘notebandi’, which will bring the focus back on the economy and how it is hurting people of all hues”.

Chucky also confirmed that another imperative was the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), which worked consistently with the voter as the GOP tried to pinpoint areas of economic weakness which included the emasculation of the venerable institution.

The Congress morale is upbeat as if it has been given an adrenaline shot, winning helps and three states are like ‘sone pe suhaga’. New elements have been introduced in the Congress campaign, there is freshness in its approach in the main people connect.

The BJP won 62 out of 65 LS seats in the 2014 general elections in Rajasthan, MP and Chattisgarh. Empirical data from these state polls reveals that they have lost 50 of these if LS polls were to take place today. Of course, state polls, by polls and general hustings are fought on different issues.

In parallel with the general elections, three important states will go to the polls — Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and possibly Jammu and Kashmir.

Immediately after the national polls, Maharashtra, Haryana and Jharkhand will go to polls.

The Congress won 206 seats in the 2009 polls to romp home as the single largest party, but by December 2013, after various state polls, the total had been reduced to 106 if one was to collate assembly poll data.

So, if the Congress ended up with 44 in May 2014, it was no surprise, for the erosion was rapid and severe. Not a similar litmus test awaits the BJP besieged by incumbency.

(The first part of the story was carried on Sunday by IANS)

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