Podu lands, tribal non tribal issues dominate in Asifabad, Kova Lakshmi trying to regain lost ground

Athram Sakku's factor can not be underestimated in Asifabad. BRS looks formidable with Kova Lakshmi on its side, while the Congress pinning hopes on sympathy, BJP is trying hard to get a hold

Podu lands, tribal non tribal issues dominate in Asifabad, Kova Lakshmi trying to regain lost ground

Assembly Constituency: Asifabad (ST)

District: Komaram Bheem

MLA: Athram Sakku – Gond

Reservation: ST

Total Voters: 2,13,991

Booths: 304

Urban Voters: 10%

Rural Voters: 90%

Male: 50%

Female: 50%

Caste & Religious Demography:

• Gen + OBC: 41.9%

• SC: 12.9%

• ST: 45.2%

• Hindu: 90.2%

• Muslim: 6.4%

• Others: 3.4%


Kova Lakshmi (BRS)

She was born on February 5, 1973, to Kotnak Bheem Rao in Bambara Village of Wankidi Mandal, Adilabad district. She completed SSC from the Government ashram school, Bambara village of Wankidi mandal in 1986. She married Kova Sone Rao, who worked as a Government teacher. Kova Laxmi’s Father was the Minister of Tribal Affairs under P. V. Narasimha Rao and worked as Minister under Nedurumalli Janardhana Reddy. She started her political journey with the Telugu Desam Party (TDP). In 1995, She was independently elected as MPTC and was the MPP. She served as Sarpanch for two terms in Bambara village. She joined the Telangana Rashtra Samithi TRS (Now BRS). She was a member of the first Telangana Legislative Assembly from the Asifabad Constituency. In 2019, She was elected as chairperson of Zilla Parishad from the Kumram Bheem Asifabad district. In the 2018, Telangana Assembly elections, Laxmi contested from Asifabad but she lost to Athram Sakku of the Congress.

Ajmera Shyam Naik (Congress)

Ajmera Shyam Naik is the husband of Khanapur BRS MLA Ajmeera Rekha Naik. He joined the Congress recently after his wife Rekha Naik’s name was not figured in the first list of the BRS candidates. Shyam Naik, who was a gazetted officer, recently took voluntary retirement from the service and joined politics.

Ajmeera Athmaram Naik (BJP)

Ajmera Athmaram Nayak was born on January 15, 1984, to Ajmera Chandru Nayak in the village of Khariguda in Rebbena Mandal of Asifabad district.

Athmaram Nayak hails from an agricultural family. He joined the BRS in 2004. In 2018, he joined the BJP. He was promoted to be the in charge of Asifabad by the BJP in 2018

Assembly Constituency information:

The Asifabad Assembly constituency consists of Keramer, Wankdi, Jainoor, Narnoor, Tiryani, and Rebbena. Asifabad,Sirpur (U),Lingapur, Gadhiguda mandals.

Background: It is an ST-reserved constituency. From 1984, the TDP has won three times, the Congress won two times, and the BRS won two times.

The constituency is politically and electorally dominated by BCs even though STs are more in percentage. Reddies and perikas are the other influential communities

MLA Profile:

Personal background: Athram Sakku (48) was born in Asifabad. He graduated from Kakatiya University in 1992. He was, however, not renominatd by the BRS in this election.

Profession: Business

Political background: Atram Sakku is an aggressive candidate in the constituency. He served as an MLA in 2009 from the Congress. In 2014 he lost the elections against Kova Laxmi (BRS) also a Gond.

After winning the 2018 elections, he joined BRS in the presence of Chief Minister KCR.

Financial Strength: Strong

Remarks: Actively interacts with the people and is an outstanding leader.

Asifabad is known for:

Lingapur waterfalls

2014 Assembly analysis:

• Anti-incumbency against the Congress MLA. Telangana sentiment helped Kova Lakshmi win the seat

• Kova Lakshmi using her father's legacy got the Majority of gond,lambadi, and SC votes.

• Atram Sakku was able to split gond votes. Core vote bank of Muslims voted for him and some of the SCs also voted for him.

• Lakshmi’s sister Saraswathi was also able to split gond votes and some part of lambadis

2018 Assembly analysis:

• Kova Lakshmi lost the election with a very thin margin of 172 votes. She was mostly unavailable to the people and delayed in the development schemes.

• Between 2014 to 2018, Atram Sakku participated in the Adivasi gond movement in the Adilabad zone. It helped him to get the votes in elections.

• The Congress and the TDP came in alliance. If we look at the vote share of 2014: The Congress got 27.3 percent and the TDP got 17.37 percent, vote share of 2018 of the Congress and the TDP alliance went up to 40.92 percent.

Current Situation:

• Now former MP Ramesh Rathod is in the BJP and TPCC chief Revanth Reddy is trying to poach him into the Congress.

• The BRS High Command allotted the MLA seat to Kova Laxmi, while Rekha Naik’s husband is pitted against her from the Congress.

• TDP 2014 AE Candidate Marsukola Saraswathi (Gond) is not active in any party.

Key Local Issues:

• Lack of development in the constituency

• Tribal non-tribal issues

• Podu land issue

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