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Telangana CM KCR fields PV's daughter Vani for Council seat
Chinna Reddy of the Congress and BJP's candidate N Ramchander Rao, the sitting MLC, are popular leaders while debutant Vani does not have any political base of her own. However, KCR seeks to make up for that by whipping up Telangana sentiments.

HYDERABAD, Feb 23: Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) leader and Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao (KCR) has fielded former Prime Minister the late PV Narasimha Rao's daughter Surabhi Vani Devi for the upcoming electoral contest in a Hyderabad Graduates constituency for Legislative Council seat.

The voting for the Hyderabad-Ranga Reddy-Mahbubnagar Graduates constituency seat is scheduled for March 14. Earlier it was reported that the TRS was supporting Prof K Nageshwar, a Left-leaning Independent candidate.

Voters have more than doubled from 2.3 lakh in 2015 when the elections were last held to 5.17 lakh this time. Since Vani Devi is an educationist, artist and social activist her CV is said to fit the bill for an election from a Graduates constituency.

The choice jells with KCR's demand to bestow the Bharat Ratna on Narasimha Rao and strengthens his Telangana card. After all, it was KCR who got Telangana its statehood after a protracted struggle that went on for over five decades. The Government had announced year-long centenary celebrations of the late Rao last year, calling him Telangana’s 'Muddu Bidda' (beloved son).

Vani's choice has been described as a slap to the Congress, of which PV was a great leader whose contributions were ignored by the party. Telangana regional sentiments will also play against the BJP's nationalist agenda.

Vani Devi's brother, the late PV Rajeswara Rao, was a Congress MP from Secunderabad and her nephew NV Subhash is with the BJP. Vani Devi is a Brahmin like BJP candidate N Ramchander Rao, the sitting MLC.

Chinna Reddy of the Congress is a veteran leader like the BJP's candidate while Vani does not carry much political weight of her own nor does have any experience.

Elections will be held to two Graduates constituencies on March 14. The vote counting will follow the preferential vote system.

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