T gana MLC polls: TRS candidates maintains lead over rivals

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Hyderabad, Mar 19 (PTI) The ruling TRS candidates, including former PM P V Narasimha Rao's daughter S Vani Devi, maintained their lead over rivals on Friday as counting of votes in the election to Telangana Legislative Council from two Graduates' constituencies progressed at a slow pace.

Devi, TRS nominee from Mahabubnagar-Rangareddy-Hyderabad Graduates' constituency,was ahead of her nearest BJP rival and sitting MLC N Ramachander Rao as the process of elimination of candidates with less number of votes and counting of second preference votes was underway, official sources said.

Meanwhile, TRS nominee and sitting MLC Palla Rajeshwar Reddy was leading in the Khammam-Warangal-Nalgonda Graduates constituency.

Both the candidates have stayed ahead of their rivals since the counting began on Wednesday.

Though the process began two days ago, it is taking time as newspaper-sized ballot papers were used for polling in view of the large number of candidates in the fray and also because the voters exercised their franchise in a preferential method.

Polling was held on March 14 for the two Graduates'' constituencies,where the total electorate number over 10 lakh.

As many as 93 candidates were in the fray from Mahabubnagar-Rangareddy-Hyderabad constituency, while 71 contested from the Warangal-Khammam-Nalgonda constituency.

The votes of the Mahabubnagar-Rangareddy-Hyderabad constituency are counted in the state capital.

Having suffered setbacks in the Dubbak assembly constituency bypoll and Hyderabad civic polls late last year, TRS made a determined bid to win the two seats, while the BJP sought to continue the momentum after its impressive show in the Dubbak bye-election and Hyderabad civic election.

The Mahabubnagar-Rangareddy-Hyderabad seat is witnessing a close contest as G Chinna Reddy of Congress, TDP's Telangana unit president L Ramana and former MLC K Nageshwar, a journalism professor and prominent analyst, are in the fray.

The main candidates from Warangal-Khammam-Nalgonda are sitting MLC Palla Rajeshwar Reddy of TRS, G Premender Reddy (BJP), Ramulu Naik (Congress) and Telangana Jana Samiti (TJS) leader M Kodandaram. PTI SJR APR ADMINISTRATOR APR ADMINISTRATOR