Andhra Pradesh, a southern state sends 42 members to Lok Sabha (8% of total Lok Sabha strength). Hence it is a crucial state and plays a key role in government formation. It has been a Congress bastion with regional parties like Telugu Desam Party (NT Ramarao) and gaining some prominence since 1980s. Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) has also of late gained some traction due to demand of separate statehood of Telangana region.
Recently, Govt. of India, has passed the bill for bifurcation of the state into Seemandhra (25 seats) and Telangana (17 seats). Elections to the state assembly are also being held together with Lok Sabha polls.
While Congress and BJP supported the state bifurcation, TDP and Jagan Reddy’s YSR Congress opposed the move. TRS chief K.C. Rao had promised that he would merge his party with Congress if Telangana is created, but didn’t fulfill his promose. BJP and TDP were in alliance talks for some time but problem was Naidu opposed Telangana while BJP supported it. This would harm BJP in Telangana and TDP in Seemandhra. In the end they went ahead with the alliance. Congress CM Kiran Reddy has also floated a party but likley to have little impact. Pawan Kalyan (actor and cousin of Chiranjeevi) is supporting Modi for PM but not putting up candidates of his newly formed party Jana Sena.
Congress did really well in 2004 and 2009 elections winning 29 and 33 seats respectively riding on YSR’s wave and great performance in Andhra helped it form UPA I and UPA II at the center.
2. Historical Results
Source: Statistical Reports, Election Commission of India
Congress has done really well in all the years, except for 1984 and 1999 when TDP bagged 30 and 29 seats respectively.
3. Demographics of State
Hindus comprise of 89%, Muslims 9% and Christians 1.5% of the undivided Andhra population. In Telangana, Hindus comprise 84%, Muslims 12% & Others 4%.
4. 2009 Lok Sabha Elections – Very Close Finish
The 2009 elections were very close. On 18 seats out of 42, the victory margin was less than 5%. 2/3rd of these seats were won by Congress. Chiranjeevi’s Pragya Rajam Party (which later merged with Congress) garnered good share of votes and pushed TDP to 6 seats only.
5. Projections for 2014
Seemandhra (25): The main fight is between YSR Congress and NDA (BJP + TDP). Congress is hated here as it supported bifurcation of Telangana. They are likely to split the honours with Jagan getting 14 & NDA 10 seats as per Politicalbaaba estimates.
Telangana (17): The main fight here is between TRS and Congress (both votaries of separate state). TRS expected to get 8 seats and Congress 5, NDA could get 3 as per Politicalbaaba estimates.