With only two weeks left before the elections, none of the two star campaigners of the warring camps — the BJP’s PM candidate Narendra Modi and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi — have yet appeared in the state even once.
Andhra Pradesh is going to polls in two phases — first in Telangana on April 30 and then in Seemandhra on May 7.
The reason for non-appearance is largely the state’s bifurcation into Telangana and Seemandhra. While claiming the credit for creating Telangana can fetch brick-bats in Seemandhra, a word in support of Seemandhra can attract equal flak in Telangana. The leaders, expectedly, are waiting for tempers to cool off.
The Congress, which seems to have lost hope in Seemandhra after pushing for bifurcation, looks late in claiming the credit for Telangana. Two days after TRS chief K Chandrasekhara Rao held a rally in Karimnagar, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi would address a rally there on Wednesday.
“Despite the TRS claims, Telangana people identify Sonia Gandhi with the new state and will show their gratitude to the Congress,” says Ponnala Lakshmaiah, TPCC chief.
Although the party is planning another Sonia rally in the region on April 27, there is no final word yet on Rahul Gandhi’s rallies in Telangana. There are only two tentative dates, April 21 and 25, but there’s no fix yet on venues.
Meanwhile, Modi, who dared the Gandhis to tour Andhra at a rally in Karnataka two months ago, has not yet been seen here. “We have tentative plans for four Modi rallies on April 24, including one in Hyderabad with the TDP,” Telangana BJP president Kishan Reddy told HT.