HindustanTimes Thu,18 Dec 2014

Amit Shah sets sights on Telangana

Prasad Nichenametla, Hindustan Times  Hyderabad, August 22, 2014
First Published: 00:32 IST(22/8/2014) | Last Updated: 00:34 IST(22/8/2014)

BJP president Amit Shah has set his focus on the south, especially Telangana, to be a major contributor to the victory of the party in the 2019 elections.

In his first visit to Hyderabad after taking over as party chief, Shah asked the cadre to start preparing keeping the 2019 polls in mind.

“In 2014, the north, west and central regions of the country played a major role. We got votes from the south but not many seats. But the next elections, the east and southern region should be the victory factor for us, with Telangana playing a major role,” he said on Thursday.

In Telangana, with 17 Lok Sabha seats, the party won just one seat and its ally TDP won another seat.

The BJP, which supported the bifurcation, had expected good results in the state but the tide turned in favour of the TRS which bagged 11 seats and has formed the government in the state.

Shah urged the party workers to concentrate on the Greater Hyderabad municipal elections to be held later this year and to then to carry that victory streak forward to the national level.

The party faces tough challenge in the city from the AIMIM, its arch rival, which has the Muslim vote strongly behind it.

With chief minister, K Chandrasekara Rao, seeming to have appeased the community with the promise of 12 per cent reservations and the incorporation of the Charminar in the state logo, the BJP now seems to be refocusing on consolidating the Hindu votes to its advantage.

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