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Telangana Polls: Congress Will Win 70+ Seats, No CM Face Before Polls: Uttam Kumar Reddy | Exclusive – News18

Congress MP from Nalgonda N Uttam Kumar Reddy was inducted into the Congress’s Central Election Committee on September 4, 2023. (@UttamINC/X/File)

In an exclusive interview to News18, Nalgonda MP and former Telangana Congress chief N Uttam Kumar Reddy also declared that Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s “national ambitions are bound to fail” as only “Rahul Gandhi can defeat the BJP at the national level”

The Congress will win more than 70 of 119 seats in the upcoming Telangana Assembly elections, party MP from Nalgonda N Uttam Kumar Reddy told News18 in an exclusive interview. Reddy, who was inducted into the Congress’s Central Election Committee on Monday, added that, like in Karnataka and Himachal Pradesh, the Congress will not declare a chief ministerial candidate in Telangana before polls.

He also declared that Telangana CM K Chandrasekhar Rao’s “national ambitions are bound to fail” as only “Rahul Gandhi can defeat the BJP at the national level”.

“As you saw in Karnataka or Himachal Pradesh, the Congress does not announce the CM (face) before the elections. After the elections, the MLAs and the national leadership will decide on the candidate,” Reddy, who has been a five-term MLA and member of Telangana Congress for 30 years, told News18.

Talking about the upcoming Backward Classes declaration in Shadnagar, Captain Uttam Kumar Reddy, as he is fondly called by his followers in reference to his days as an Air Force pilot, said: “We have been doing a series of declarations which are election assurances from the party. The main highlight of the Backward Classes declaration, to be released by Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, will be the caste census. This has been a long-standing demand from backward castes, but for some reason, the Narendra Modi government has been ignoring it.”

Commenting on the lack of representation of Backward Classes in the first list of BRS candidates, the former president of Telangana Congress said: “In their candidate list, the BRS has missed out major communities like the Mudiraj community.”

He expressed confidence that the Congress will win more than 70 seats in the 119-member Telangana Assembly. Reddy, however, was not sure if the party will tie up with the Left ahead of elections.

So, will the Congress announce free bus rides for women in Telangana as it did in Karnataka? “The assurances to be given to women have not been finalised yet. We will keep this in mind as it has been already implemented in Karnataka and received good response,” Reddy said.

Replying to why the Congress is not in power despite granting statehood to Telangana, the former MLA said: “The credit in the public eye went to KCR. He has benefited out of it. But I am sure now, that after 10 years of misrule by the BRS, things will change. There has been high-level corruption, abuse of office, misuse of police force etc under the BRS. Public opinion is changing now.”

“Major sections feel that they have been cheated. Before 2014 elections, KCR said that he would make a Dalit the Chief Minister. The major SC community, the Madigas, constitute 12% of the population. There is not a single minister in his cabinet from that community. He promised to give three acre of agriculture land to every Dalit and tribal family. None of these promises has been fulfilled. He promised to give 2 BHK houses to every poor eligible family. They have just given some token numbers.”

Is the SC/ST declaration a copy of the BRS’s Dalit Bandhu Scheme? “That’s not true at all. Schedule Caste and Tribes should be given reservation in proportion to their population, which is not being given now. The Congress made the big announcement that it will do that. Dalit Bandhu has not been extended to even 1% of the Dalit population. We are going to increase the amount and we are going to implement it in saturation mode so that every family is covered,” Reddy said.

Stating that KCR’s national ambitions are bound to fail, Reddy said the BRS will be reduced from nine MPs in the Lok Sabha to “three or four” in the 2024 General Elections. “Only Rahul Gandhi can defeat the BJP at the national level,” he said.

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