The BRS seems to be banking on the Telangana sentiment in this election too. However, this time it has more to do with Delhi and Gujarat than Andhra Pradesh. Almost every speech of BRS leaders is aimed at reigniting the Telangana sentiment. They recall the woes the region suffered under Congress rule in United Andhra Pradesh. As the Congress is the main adversary, it has become easy to kindle regional sentiments and appeal to voters not to fall for Delhi and Gujarat parties.
On Friday, KT Rama Rao said that this is a fight for Telangana’s self-respect and identity. He made these remarks quoting Prime Minister Modi’s statement that “Gujarati Sardar Patel freed Hyderabad and another Gujarati Modi will free Telangana from KCR.”
The Congress also made a similar statement. TPCC chief Revanth had said, “if not for Sonia Gandhi we would have begged alms at Birla Mandir or Nampally Dargah.”
On Friday, KCR said, “When I was a minister, the then Chief Minister said at a Cabinet meeting that Telangana would not get any more investments. I told them that I didn’t understand. I asked how can a child survive if the mother was a devil. I asked how investments would come if the Chief Minister himself said that Telangana would not get any investment?”
During his speech at Gajwel, Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao recalled how Telangana legislators were discriminated against during NTR’s government.
“When elections came they used to give tickets to Rayalaseema and Uttarandhra first. They used to give tickets last to Telangana saying it is near. The Chief Minister was NT Rama Rao. A day after my father’s death, I went to Nacharam Studio to get the B-Form. Everyone from Telangana was there. There were state-level leaders, ministers and MLAs. They sat like beggars on the steps of a temple. It hurt a lot. There were not even chairs,” KCR said.
He also recalled how Chandrababu Naidu increased electricity rates which led to his resignation.
KCR also recalled when farmers came to protest, the Chandrababu government opened fire at them at Basheer Bagh. Interestingly, the BRS is divided on Chandrababu’s arrest. So far K. Chandrasekhar Rao has issued no statement about the former AP CM’s arrest. The TDP vote bank came to the BRS in 2018. But this time they think that there is a possibility of it going to the Congress due to Revanth’s TDP background. So the BRS has not raked up the Telangana sentiment so far.