Ever since Telangana has come into existence in 2014, the influence of K Chandrashekhar Rao, the current CM of the state has been undisputed. One of the agitators for the creation of Telangana state, he gained popularity for his welfare schemes, especially farmer friendly schemes like Rythu Bandhu, Rythu Bima and increased pensions. As such, it came as no surprise when he was re-elected to power with a thumping majority in 2018, outfoxing most of the political pundits who had predicted against him.
However, as of now, KCR is no more than an undisputed leader of the state. Slowly but steadily, the state of Telangana is slipping out of his hands. The financial position of the state is no better, thanks to the fall in revenues, following which the current year’s state budget has been pruned from Rs. 1.85 Lakh crore to Rs. 1.35 Lakh crore, apart from the huge cuts in the expenditure of various schemes like completion of double bedroom housing for the poor. The chief minister has not been able to implement his pre-poll promises of paying interim relief to the state employees, pending pay revision, besides increasing the retirement age from 58 to 61.
Adding further salt to the wounds is the deteriorating law and order situation of his state. Ever since he has reclaimed power in Telangana, K Chandra Shekhar Rao has failed to grasp the law and order, which has taken the situation for the worse with the ghastly rape and murder of a veterinarian in Hyderabad. Even though the police managed to nab the accused and shot them dead in an encounter a few days later, the situation is far from better.
Interestingly, buoyed by his victory in Telangana, KCR also harboured national ambitions, which were massively crushed when BJP romped home to power in 2019 with a massive 303 seats on their own. Like Mamata Bannerjee, despite having no reason to fear from them, KCR intentionally messed with them and thought that the newly elected CM of Andhra Pradesh, Jagan Mohan Reddy, would come handy.
However, he was unlucky in this respect, as initially, Jagan displayed a lot of interest; however, he later abandoned him when he found his own interests under threat. This reflects very well in the way the two parties responded to the Citizenship Amendment Bill. While TRS voted against the bill, YSRCP surprisingly voted in favour of the same, be it in Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha.
Also, the way in which KCR underestimated BJP proved too costly. BJP, which barely managed to a seat in the previous assembly elections of 2018, surprised one and all as they won 4 seats in the 2019 LS elections, emerging not only as the principal opposition but also reducing the tally of TRS to a mere 9 out of 17 seats contested. To be fair, KCR is now all alone in his fight, and it would be interesting to see how he fares in the 2023 assembly elections when his government shall have to face the test of anti-incumbency.