Laxmi Prasanna of the TRS lost to the BJP’s Lachi Reddy by 32 votes.

A collage of the BJP candidate TRS candidate and her son
news GHMC Elections Saturday, December 05, 2020 - 14:58

When M Ranjith Goud filed his nomination as an independent candidate from the BN Reddy Nagar ward for the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Election (GHMC) election, little did he expect that his candidature would cost his mother the seat. BJP’s Moddu Lachi Reddy ended up defeating M Laxmi Prasanna of the TRS by the slimmest of margins - a mere 32 votes. 

And while the fight was between the BJP and TRS, there were also four independent candidates in the fray, including Ranjith. Laxmi, who is the sitting corporator, had polled 10406 votes against Lachi Reddy’s 10438. But it appears that it was the 39 votes that were cast in Rajith’s favour that sealed his mother Laxmi’s fate. 

Speaking to TNM, an official from the TRS candidate’s office said that M Ranjith Goud was fielded as a dummy candidate by the party. His symbol was a torchlight and neither Ranjith nor anyone from the party campaigned for him, said the source. “M Ranjith was a dummy candidature. We wanted to withdraw it but we ended up not doing it. He is only around 25 years old. He never campaigned nor did we tell anyone that he is even contesting. It seems like some people voted for him just like how the other independent candidates get votes from people who don’t want to vote for political parties,” said the source close to the TRS candidate.

While the TRS candidate and her supporters are finding it hard to believe what happened, the BJP feels that it is due to the overconfidence that the TRS lost this election. Speaking to TNM, Lachi Reddy, the BJP candidate said, “The TRS candidate wanted two passes for entering designated areas where only the candidates are allowed, so they named Ranjith Goud as an independent candidate. He was with his mother throughout the election campaign. The son was just a dummy candidate. Some people seem to have voted for Ranjith seeing the ‘Goud’ in his name, caste is still a matter for some of the voters.”

The TRS candidate has appealed for a detailed inquiry and has also demanded action against those who are allegedly involved in this ‘conspiracy’. “We have requested for recounting. We also want action to be taken against the Returning officer and the Deputy Commissioner. It is due to personal vendetta that they have done this. We have also asked for a detailed reply from them about the 346 votes that were rejected. They need to tell us as to why each of them were rejected.”

Laughing at what transpired, Lachi said, “Minister Sabita Indira Reddy had campaigned for the TRS candidate. She was their star campaigner. For us, it was the lotus which was our star campaigner.”         

BN Reddy Nagar is part of the Hayathnagar circle and comes under the LB Nagar zone in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC). BN Reddy Nagar is a general ward. In 2016, M Laxmi Prasanna of the TRS had won from the ward.

On Friday, the results were announced for 149 out of the 150 wards that went to polls in the GHMC elections. The result of the Neredmet ward was withheld as per directions of the High Court because of the ‘Swastika controversy’.

READ: From four seats to 48: How the BJP has grown in the Hyderabad municipal polls

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