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Friday, November 16, 2018

Telangana elections ~ crorepathi owns no car

Telangana became the latest entrant, the newest State to be born in India.  Carved out of Andhra Pradesh, it is located  on the centre-south stretch on  high Deccan Plateau. It is the twelfth largest state and the twelfth-most populated state in India.  On 2 June 2014, the area was separated from the northwestern part of Andhra Pradesh as the newly formed 29th  state with Hyderabad as its historic permanent capital. Its other major cities include Warangal, Nizamabad, Khammam and Karimnagar. Telangana is bordered by the states of Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka and Andhra.

It has a long and chequered history – the  Telangana Rebellion was a peasant revolt, tumulted in 1946 by communists.  It originated in the Nalgonda district raised to be  against the feudal landlords and later against the Nizam Osman Ali Khan. The violent phase of the movement ended after the Government of India's Operation Polo. Later in 1951, the CPI shifted to a more moderate strategy of seeking to bring communism to India within the framework of Indian democracy. On 30 July 2013, the Congress Working Committee unanimously passed a resolution to recommend the formation of a separate Telangana state. After various stages the bill was placed in the Parliament of India in February 2014.  In February 2014, Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014 bill was passed by the Parliament of India for the formation of Telangana state comprising ten districts from north-western Andhra Pradesh.

The state of Telangana was officially formed on 2 June 2014. Kalvakuntla Chandrashekar Rao was elected as the first chief minister of Telangana, following elections in which the Telangana Rashtra Samithi party secured majority. Hyderabad  continued  as the joint capital of both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh for a period, not more than 10 years; however, Andhra Pradesh selected Amaravati as capital and moved its legislature by Mar 2017.   Now Telangana is in news for elections !

Esa Bin Obaid Misri probably has little trouble punching above his weight. Indeed, the award-winning bodybuilder remembers how he knocked out a wrestler twice his age and size when he was around 20.  He has vowed to defeat Akbaruddin Owaisi, the Telanagna state lawmaker representing Chandrayanagutta in Hyderabad.  Misri, 49, has spent his life wrestling and pumping iron, and next month's election will mark his debut in politics.  Esa Misri runs a gym, has Yemeni roots and is contesting  on a Congress ticket.  Sources said the Congress chose him since Chandrayanagutta is known for its cultural and historic connections with Arabic nations !! – nothing strange !!! Telangana Legislative Assembly is the lower house of the Telangana Legislature. The Legislative Assembly of Telangana currently consists of 119 elected members and 1 nominated member from the Anglo-Indian community.

Elections for the Telangana Legislative Assembly is scheduled to be held on 7 December 2018 to constitute the second Legislative Assembly. Incumbent CM   Kalvakuntla Chandrashekar Rao went for early elections in 2018, by resigning  six months before the completion of his term.  TRS chief and Telangana’s first chief minister K Chandrashekar Rao (KCR) is a wealthy farmer with assets worth ₹22 crore. But, according to an affidavit filed with his nomination papers, he doesn’t own a car. Ironically, his party’s symbol is a car.

Four years ago, when he contested Telangana’s first election in 2014, KCR had said he didn’t own a car. On taking office in 2014, he had changed the colour of three of the six cars in his official convoy from black to white, apparently after consulting an astrologer. In 2015, his government added four new Toyota Land Cruiser Prados to his convoy. The cost was estimated at nearly ₹1 crore, which included bullet-proofing of the vehicles. Rao, who filed his nomination from Gajwel on Wednesday, listed his profession as ‘agriculturalist’ and declared a net income of ₹91.5 lakh annually. Despite this, he has told the Election Commission that he owes his son KT Rama Rao ₹84 lakh, and his daughter-in-law K Shailima ₹24 lakh. While filing his nomination papers in 2014, KCR had declared himself to be a businessman and a farmer. He has now chosen to give up the ‘businessman’ tag. He’s among the very few prominent politicians in the country without either a Facebook or Twitter account.

The chief minister has mentioned that he has invested ₹3.2 crore in his farm and the total value of the farmhouse is ₹6.5 crore. He had bought it for ₹1.3 crore. He had 37 acres in 2014 when he became chief minister after the Telangana agitation. Today, it has grown to 54 acres. His total assets were ₹15 crore four years ago and have now increased to ₹22 crore. KCR hasn’t taken loans from banks, but  has unsecured loans from Prathima Group chairman Boniapally Srinivasa Rao who is close to the KCR clan. The chief minister has also taken loans from Pact Securities and Financials Services, a company promoted Boinapally Srinivas Rao’s wife Boinapally Usharani. He has also borrowed from TRS MP G Vivekanand. KCR has investments in companies that run a TV channel and a newspaper. He owns gold jewellery worth ₹2.4 lakh, while his wife has diamonds and gold worth ₹93 lakh.

KCR is facing 63 criminal cases across Telangana, most registered by the government railway police during the Telangana agitation. In his affidavit, he said that as the summons have not been issued, he is not aware of case numbers and the jurisdiction of the courts. Most of the cases relate to criminal conspiracy, rioting, disobeying orders promulgated by public servant, unlawful assembly, Prevention of Damage to Public Properties Act, criminal trespass and violation of Indian Railways Act.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
15th Nov 2018
PS 1:  collated from various sources including Wikipedia, Firstpost, Times of India & Indian Express.
2.  :  Mullath Kadingi Vellodi CIE, ICS was the first CM though not an elected one.  He  was appointed by Govt of India after the fall of the Hyderabad state ruled by Nizam rule. A member of the Indian Civil Service, he was Textile Commissioner and ex-officio Joint Secretary in the Department of Industries and Civil Supplies during the British Raj. He was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Indian Empire (CIE) in the 1944 Birthday Honours list.

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