Kalvakuntla Kavitha (Upper Left), Renuka Chowdhury (Lower Left), Asaduddin Owaisi (Right)
Telangana, with 17 Lok Sabha constituencies, went to polls in the first phase on April 11. This is the first Lok Sabha polls in the state, which was formed in June 2014 after bifurcation from Andhra Pradesh.
Sticking to their guns, over 170 farmers remained in the fray in the Nizamabad Lok Sabha constituency from where Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao's daughter K Kavitha is seeking re-election. A total of 443 candidates remained in the fray with Nizamabad topping the list with 185 candidates.
Bolstered by its thumping win in the Assembly polls in December last, TRS has set itself a target of winning 16 seats, leaving the Hyderabad seat to its ally All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (AIMIM).
The exit polls have also predicted that the TRS may win 15-17 seats in Telangana while both the BJP and the Congress will not be able to open their accounts in the state.
In the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, the TRS had bagged 11 seats while the Congress won two and the TDP, the YSR Congress, the BJP and the MIM got one each.
Here is a look at the key contests that the state witnessed in the Lok Sabha polls:
Nizamabad: Kalvakuntla Kavitha (TRS) versus Madhu Yaskhi Goud (Congress) versus D Aravind (BJP)
Nizamabad will see a contest between KCR's daughter Kavitha and Congress leader Madhu Yaskhi Goud again this time. In 2014, Kavitha defeated Goud by a healthy margin of 1,67,184 votes. Goud represented the seat twice in 2004 and 2009 before his defeat in 2014. In the last seven elections, the seat was won by the TDP and the Congress three times respectively. The TRS won the seat for the first time in 2014.
Hyderabad: Asaduddin Owaisi (AIMIM) versus Firoz Khan (Congress) versus Dr Bhagwanth Rao (BJP)
The AIMIM has maintained a stronghold on this seat since 1989. The current sitting MP is Asaddudin Owaisi, one of the nation’s most vocal MPs and also a vehement Modi critic.
Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi won here in 1984 and continued to win on an AIMIM ticket in 1989, 1991, 1996, 1998 and 1999. In 2004, his son Asaddudin took over and also won from the seats. In 2009, he won by a margin of 1,23,865 votes beating TDP’s Zahid Ali Khan.
Nalgonda: Vemireddy Narasimha Reddy (TRS) Vs N Uttam Kumar Reddy (Congress) Vs Garlapati Jithender Kumar (BJP)
Congress state chief Uttam Kumar Reddy will take on TRS leader V Narasimha Reddy and BJP's Jithender Kumar in Nalgonda. Gutha Sukender Reddy of Congress won the seat in 2009 and 2014. He represented the seat in 1998 also but as a TDP candidate. The CPI also won the seat six times in 1952, 1957, 1991, 1996, 1998 and 2004. CPI general secretary S Sudhakar Reddy won the seat in 1998 and 2004.
Khammam: Nageswara Rao Nama (TRS) versus Renuka Chowdhury (Congress) versus Vasudev Rao (BJP)
Khammam Lok Sabha constituency will see BJP’s Vasudev Rao take on TDP’s Nageswara Rao Nama and Congress heavyweight and former union minister Renuka Choudhary. Nageswara Rao Nama had quit TDP to join the TRS recently.
In 2014, YSR Cong’s Ponguleti Srinivasa Reddy won the seat by 11,974 votes beating TDP’s Nama Nageswara Rao. CPI’s Kankanala had come third.
Telangana Rashtra Samithi MP K Kavitha, daughter of party supremo and Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, is seeking re-election from the Nizamabad Lok Sabha constituency.
Kavitha is facing challenge from 179 farmers who have filed their nomination as a mark of protest, alleging that the ruling TRS had failed to ensure Minimum Support Price for turmeric and red jowar (sorghum) produce and in getting the Turmeric Board established in Nizamabad.
Asaduddin Owaisi is seeking to retain the Hyderabad constituency which has been an AIMIM stronghold and won by Owaisi since 2004.
With the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) making it clear that it would back his candidature, Owaisi seems to be on a strong wicket in this Muslim-dominated segment.
In the assembly elections in December last year, AIMIM had won seven of the eight seats it had contested. They party had supported the ruling TRS in the remaining 111 segments.
Nageswara Rao Nama
Nageswara Rao quit the Telugu Desam Party in March this year and joined the ruling TRS.
TRS candidate from Khammam, the former MP from Telangana and TDP politburo member is one of the richest politicians in the country with declared assets worth over Rs 113 crore.
Nageswara Rao, an industrialist, had unsuccessfully contested from Khammam as TDP nominee in the Telangana Assembly elections in December last.
Senior leader and former union minister Renuka Choudhary has been fielded by the Congress from Khammam Lok Sabha seat in Telangana.
Choudhary, whose name figured in the party's seventh list of 35 candidates released Friday night, had won from Khammam in 1999 and 2004 but lost to Rao in 2009.