Hyderabad: More than an hour into counting, early trends of postal ballots on Tuesday showed the incumbent K. Chandrashekhar Rao-led Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) leading in 12 seats over the Congress-led grand alliance in Telangana. At 9.40 am, the Election Commission of India (ECI) website showed the Congress and an independent candidate leading in one seat each.

In the Kukatpally constituency, which has a sizable population of those who migrated from neighbouring Andhra Pradesh when the state was formed, TRS candidate Madhavaram Krishna Rao (who won the seat in 2014 and defected to TRS) was leading with 4,535 votes, while the Telugu Desam Party’s (TDP) N. Suhasini was trailing with 3,110 votes. Suhasini is former AP chief minister and TDP founder N.T. Rama Rao’s grand-daughter.

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In the Alair seat, TRS’s Gongidi Suneetha had a big lead with 4,519 votes over Congress candidate Budida Bikshamaiah’s 1,616 in the first round of counting. Similarly, in the Quthubullapur constituency, former TRS MLA K.P. Vivekanad, who had won the seat in 2014, was leading with 6,625 votes, over the Congress’s K. Srisailam Goud.

In the elections to the state asembly, the TRS re-nominated several of its MLAs who had won the 2014 polls. The party was high on confidence and advanced the assembly elections by nearly eight months to capitalize on its perceived positive trends.

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The KCR-led TRS is relying on many populist schemes, including ‘Rythu Bandhu’, where farmers were given ,000 for both Rabi and Kharif seasons as investment inputs, and the 80,000 crore Kaleshwaram Lift irrigation scheme. The TRS also has the support of Asaduddin Owaisi-led All India Majilis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen.

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