Hyderabad: The Telangana government is making all arrangements to conduct Panchayat elections, likely to be held next month, panchayat raj minister Jupally Krishna Rao said on Thursday. Rao said that, as before, 34% of the seats will be reserved for backward classes, 20% for scheduled castes and 6% for scheduled tribes.

“The work to conduct the elections in a transparent manner has been taken up in the last few months. Following the elections, training will be given to the elected representatives to create awareness about the new Panchayat Raj Act (that was passed earlier this year by the assembly)," Rao said at a press conference.

It was earlier rumoured that MLAs of the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) were opposed to the panchayat elections, as they were wary of spending campaign money on candidates supporting the TRS (the polls are not contested on party tickets).

Their worry reportedly was that they would have to once again spend money on campaigns during the 2019 state and general elections. Rao, however, dismissed the rumour.

The election is being looked at as a precursor to the 2019 state and general elections in Telangana. According to TRS leaders who did not want to be named, the TRS leadership, led by K. Chandrasekhar Rao, is keen on conducting the elections, and is also confident of winning it.

A total of 12,734 gram panchayats (out of 12,751) and 1,13,190 wards (out of 1,13,354) will go to polls in the state. The current term of the rural elected representatives ends on 31 July.

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