Telangana Election Results 2023: KCR is trailing from Kamareddy though he is ahead in Gajwel.
The dream run of Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao appears to have come to its end. Not only is the Congress heading for a huge win in Telangana, Mr Rao -- a two-time Chief Minister of the state --- is trailing from one of the two seats he is contesting. While he is ahead in his stronghold Gajwel constituency, in Kamareddy, where he is up against the young state Congress chief Revanth Reddy, he is trailing.
The Telangana Rashtra Samithi -- now renamed Bharat Rashtra Samithi -- had spearheaded the statehood movement. After the state was carved out of Andhra Pradesh in 2014, it had the unquestioned support of the people for a decade. But now, Telangana appears ready for a change.
The shift in mood was partly attributed to the corruption allegations against Mr Rao and senior leaders of the party. The bigger blow to it was Prime Minister Narendra Modi's comment that Mr Rao had tried to join the NDA and was turned down.
The Congress, on an upswing after its huge victory in neighbouring Karnataka, had seized the day, claiming the BRS was hand-in-glove with the BJP.
As icing, it pointed out that unlike leaders of Delhi's ruling Aam Aadmi Party, Mr Rao's daughter K Kavitha was not by Central agencies even though her name had cropped up in the Delhi liquor scam.
For the better part of the last decade, Mr Rao had harboured national ambitions. Ahead of the 2019 general election, he had visited various Opposition leaders -- including Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her Odisha counterpart Naveen Patnaik -- to stitch up a collation that would exclude the Congress and the BJP.
Though that initiative had failed, he had not given up. As the Opposition firmed up the India coalition, Mr Rao was seen cosying up to Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal and Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav --- leaders who have not pulled punches where the Congress is concerned.
Then, in a huge move, he had renamed his party -- moving away from Telangana to Bharat. Many had questioned the change in focus, contending that it would not go down well with the people of the fledgling state.
The election appears to have proved them right. The Congress is currently leading on 65 of Telangana's 119 seats. The BRS is ahead on just 41 seats – 47 down from its 2018 score.