Election Commission to kick off poll action in Telangana today

Hyderabad: The Election Commission will issue the notification for the December 7 Telangana state Assembly polls on Monday, formally kicking off the process to elect the new House even as the Opposition is to fully get its act together.

The results will be declared on December 11. Filing of nominations will also start from Monday, and the final date for filing papers is November 19. The Telangana Rashtra Sami-ti has announced 107 candidates out of 119 more than a month ago, and the BJP 66 candidates about a fortnight ago.

The main Opposition Congress is still in the process of selecting candidates. Its Mahakutami allies — the Telugu Desam, CPI and the Telangana Jana Samiti — are awaiting confirmation  from the Congress over the seats to be allotted to them. Both the TJS and the CPI have been fighting hard for more seats than the Congress is offering.

It is expected that the TRS will announce its nominees for the 12 remaining seats after the Mahakutami announces its candidates.

It has by and large quelled rebellion in its ranks for tickets. The Congress is expected to announce its list on November 13.

TRS president and caretaker Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao will file his papers on November 14. A majority of TRS candidates are also likely to file their nominations on the same day.

Twenty-three days are left for the the campaign, and candidates take to canvassing after the filing of nominations is done. TRS candidates have completed two rounds of campaign in their constituencies.

The most serious phase of the campaign will be for two weeks from November to December 5, when campaign ends for the polls. The canvassing has already seen rival leaders criticising each other bitterly, and this is only expected to worsen as election day approaches. Congress president Rahul Gandhi will hold meetings in the state on November 28, 29 and December 3.

UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi will campaign on November 22 and 23. TPCC is planning a public meeting at Hyderabad with Mrs Gandhi.

The party found that the Gachchibowli stadium has been booked for that day, and are trying for an alternative venue like the Parade Grounds or LB Stadium.
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