Kadiyam Kavya is Congress candidate for Warangal (SC) Lok Sabha seat

Congress is yet to announce names for three more Lok Sabha seats — Karimnagar, Khammam, and Hyderabad — in Telangana.

ByRaj Rayasam

Published Apr 02, 2024 | 2:10 AM Updated Apr 02, 2024 | 8:10 AM

File photo of Kadiyam Kavya.

Ending the suspense on who would be the Congress nominee for the Warangal SC Lok Sabha seat in Telangana, the party on Monday, 1 April, announced the name of Dr Kadiyam Kavya, daughter of BRS MLA from Station Ghanpur, Kadiyam Srihari.

Congress is yet to announce names for three more Lok Sabha seats — Karimnagar, Khammam, and Hyderabad — in Telangana.

The party finalised Kavya’s name at a CEC meeting, which marked an end to the high-voltage drama that preceded it.

Kavya, a medical doctor, has been in social service for quite some time now, promoting hygiene for women in rural areas during their menstrual cycle.

Related: BRS leader Kadiyam Srihari, daughter Kadiyam Kavya join Congress

Kavya’s trajectory

The BRS originally announced Kavya’s name for the Warangal seat — reserved for a member from the Scheduled Castes (SCs). However, she spurned the offer.

Then, she and her father joined Congress on Sunday after getting a categorical assurance from the party that she would be its Lok Sabha candidate for Warangal.

Kavya’s wild-card entry upset the calculations of BRS sitting MP Pasunuru Dayakar, who was hoping he would be nominated for the seat, and hence left the pink party and donned Congress robes.

In fact, Dayakar left BRS after the regional party’s supremo K Chandrashekar Rao named Kavya for the seat.

Now, with neither in the BRS camp, the party has been forced to look for someone else for the seat.

Meanwhile, it may be noted that Dayakar belongs to the Mala sub-caste of the SC community.

Congress could not afford to field him as it had already named Mala candidates for two other SC-reserved seats: Mallu Ravi for Nagarkurnool and Gaddam Vamsi Krishna for Peddapally.

It was under these circumstances that Kadiyam Srihari, who belongs to the Byndla sub-caste of the SC community, approached the Congress and tested the waters.

When he got an assurance that the party would consider Kavya for the Warangal seat, he immediately took the leap of faith, leaving BRS to cry foul over the “great betrayal”.

Related: BRS caught unawares as Warangal candidate Kavya dumps party

Caste equations

Kadiyam Srihari and Kadiyam Kavya’s exit from BRS came as a hard knock to the party, which has been fighting a losing battle when it comes to retaining leaders.

This apart, Srihari is a respected leader in the Station Ganhpur constituency, and served as the deputy to former KCR when the latter was the chief minister of Telangana.

He also served as a minister in N Chandrababu Naidu’s Cabinet when he was the chief minister of the undivided state of Andhra Pradesh.

BRS has already been insisting that Srihari had to resign as an MLA since he joined the Congress after his election to the Assembly from Station Ghanpur on a ticket from the regional party.

Initially, it was not he but Kavya who joined the Congress. However, Srihari declared on Monday that he had joined the Congress, which led BRS to say that there is no alternative for him but to resign from the Station Ghanpur seat.

Congress might renominate him from Station Ghanpur in the by-election that would ensue, and it is likely that he might win, given the buoyance the party now has after its resounding victory in the recent Assembly elections.

Also Read: BRS MP K Keshava Rao and daughter the GHMC mayor — to join Congress

Other seats

Meanwhile, it remains to be seen who the national party picks for Khammam. Every leader worth his salt in Khammam has their eyes set on the constituency as it is the safest seat in the entire state for Congress.

With three ministers lobbying for a ticket to the seat for their kin, the party is finding it difficult to untangle the mess.

Revenue Minister Ponguleti Srinivas Reddy is seeking the ticket for his brother Prasad Reddy, while Deputy Chief Minister Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka wants the nomination for his wife Nandini.

Then there is Thummala Nageswara Rao, who wants his son Yugandhar to be allotted the ticket. The party is also considering Srinivas Reddy’s relative R Raghurami Reddy.

For Karimnagar, the party is yet to find a suitable candidate to take on former Telangana BJP chief Bandi Sanjay.

That is because the party does not seem to be convinced of the winning chances of those available — A Praveen Reddy and Velchala Rajender, who have been moving earth and heaven for the ticket.

Hyderabad is not a seat the party is very keen on, and it has to nominate some as its candidate.

In the wake of Congress getting closer to AIMIM, it is felt that the former might take it easy by fielding a leader of no consequence to help incumbent MP Asaduddin Owaisi win the seat.

(Edited by Arkadev Ghoshal)