In a first, BRS won’t have a Lok Sabha MP as it draws a blank, loses deposits in 8 seats of Telangana

The BRS, which dominated the Telangana politics for a decade, now faced a stunning downfall with zero Lok Sabha seats.

BySumit Jha

Published Jun 05, 2024 | 10:20 AMUpdatedJun 05, 2024 | 10:20 AM

KCR on Lok Sabha exit polls

Telangana’s Bharat Rashtra Samiti (BRS) was a formidable political force seven months ago.

Its downfall was quick, starting with the 30 November 2023 Assembly election. The party which once had a say in Parliament, on Tuesday, 4 June, stood rejected, routed, and decimated. BRS’ performance in Lok Sabha elections 2024 has been abysmal.

Once hailed as the people’s alternative in Telangana, the BRS lost in all contested constituencies and will be without a representative in the 18th Lok Sabha.

The party, headed by K Chandrashekar Rao, apparently, did not realise — or ignored — Telangana’s shifting political landscape and paid the price.

Its candidates lost deposits in eight constituencies. The party was relegated to third place in 14 of the state’s 17 Parliament constituencies.

The fall would hurt the BRS (previously TRS) more since the result contrasted with its 2004 debutant show in the Lok Sabha elections.

Also Read: Congress emerges largest party in South with over 40 seats

The BRS story 

The BRS, formed in the backdrop of the Telangana movement, won its first Parliament seats in the 2004 general election, securing five seats. However, in 2009, it won only two.

The party’s fortunes soared in 2014 after the announcement of the formation of the Telangana state. It won 11 out of 17 seats with a 34.94 percent vote share. Despite a setback in 2019, when it lost two seats, the BRS still managed to secure nine seats with an increased vote share of 41.71 percent.

However, after losing power in the Legislative Assembly elections, the BRS lost its grip on parliamentary seats in the state, garnering only 16.68 percent of the votes. The party faced a complete rout, failing to put up a fight in any of the 17 constituencies.

The BRS came second place in two constituencies — Mahabubabad and Khammam. In 14 constituencies, it finished third, and in the Hyderabad constituency, it came fourth, behind AIMIM, BJP, and the Congress.

Adding to its woes, the BRS faced another setback in the Secunderabad Cantonment Assembly constituency. The party had initially won this seat during the Legislative Assembly elections.

However, following the sudden death of G Lasya Nanditha, the incumbent MLA, a by-election was necessitated. The BRS fielded Lasya Nanditha’s sister, Niveditha Sayanna, as its candidate. She ended up third, while the Congress gained one more MLA.

Also Read: Who won with highest and lowest victory margins

Lost deposits

The party lost deposits in eight out of the 17 constituencies it contested. However, it saved the deposit in one constituency, Nalgonda, with a mere 0.19 percent margin.

BRS candidates lost their deposits in Adilabad, Chevella, Hyderabad, Mahabubnagar, Malkajgiri, Nizamabad, Secunderabad, and Zahirabad.

Ironically, Chevella, Hyderabad, Malkajgiri, and Secunderabad are urban constituencies, considered to be BRS strongholds, where it registered significant victories in the 2023 Assembly elections.

The party’s performance was dismal across several constituencies, finishing a poor third in Adilabad, Bhongir, Chevella, Karimnagar, Mahabubnagar, Medak, Nagarkurnool, Nalgonda, Nizamabad, Peddapalli, Secunderabad, Warangal, and Zahirabad.

Also See: Results of Lok Sabha Elections 2024

The deposit rule

Section 34 (1)(a) of the Representation of People Act mandates candidates to deposit a certain amount with the Election Commission of India.

The deposit amount is ₹25,000 for Lok Sabha and ₹10,000 for Assembly polls for general category candidates. Those from Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes need to deposit only half these amounts.

The rule is aimed at discouraging frivolous nominations. Losing a deposit is a financial setback and seen as a sign of electoral failure, affecting the reputation of both the party and individual candidates.

It may also discourage candidates who lose their deposits from running in future elections due to the perceived lack of public support.

The deposit is refunded if the candidate secure one-sixth — or 16.67 percent — of the total votes polled. Otherwise, it would remain with the poll panel.

Besides BRS, the BJP lost deposits in two constituencies—Khammam and Hyderabad—while the Congress lost its deposit in the Hyderabad constituency.

In the 2023 Assembly elections, the BJP lost deposits in 64 constituencies, Congress in 13, and BRS in seven.

Also Read: Jaya Jayahe Telangana: Chequered existence, unsettled status

‘Will rise like a Phoenix’

BRS working president and former minister KT Rama Rao said the election result was disappointing.

“In the past 24 years since TRS was founded, we have seen it all, Stellar achievements, successes and also many setbacks,” he said.

“The greatest glory, formation of the Telangana state will remain our biggest achievement,” he said on X while recalling previous election results.

“Today’s electoral setback is certainly very disappointing. But we will continue to toil and will rise from the ashes again like a Phoenix,” he added.

(Edited by Majnu Babu).