The victory of Telangana Rashtra Samithi in the assembly elections in Telangana was not an unexpected one, but nobody would have expected that it would be so stupendous.
For that matter, even many TRS leaders were admitting, off the record, that there was a close fight between their party and the Maha Kootami or People’s Front in many constituencies.
“We will scrape through despite the tough fight,” was the general comment that was heard from them till a few hours before the counting.
Sources in the power centre at Pragathi Bhavan also reportedly told media persons close to them that the TRS would form the government again, come what may.
“Don’t ask how many seats we would get, but we are going to come back to power at any cost,” they are learnt to have said.
The Congress leaders were also confident that their party would also scrape through and they also made efforts to lure potential independents to get their support in case of a hung assembly.
But what was witnessed on Tuesday was a complete shock to everybody, including political observers who had noticed tremendous anti-incumbency in several parts of the state during their tours.
Nobody would have expected stalwarts like K Jana Reddy, A Revanth Reddy, D K Aruna, Damodar Raja Narasimha, Konda Surekha and T Jeevan Reddy from Congress and G Kishan Reddy from BJP to lose their seats.
Besides, in many places, there were surprising and shocking results, as those who were expected to lose, have won the seats – such as Muthiredddy Yadagiri Reddy from Jangaon, T Rajaiah from Station Ghanur, Shankar Naik from Mahbubabad, Marri Janardhan Reddy from Nagarkurnool etc.
Independent observers are suspecting that at many places, if not everywhere, there was a large scale manipulation of votes in the final moments of polling.
“The ruling party took advantage of the extended hours of polling in several polling stations for the sake of those who were already in queues. In such places, after closing hours, the polling officials with the support of police and local leaders could have indiscriminately pressed the button for the TRS,” an observer said.
It was done in a systematic, pre-planned and organized way without giving any suspicion to anybody.
“That was the reason why the returning officers did not send the accurate polling percentage to the headquarters even several hours after the closure of polling. On Friday midnight, the EC released the final counting figures, putting it at 69.5 per cent, but by Saturday evening, the poll percentage went up to 73 per cent, which is quite abnormal,” he pointed out.
So, something went wrong in the final hours and that made all the difference!