With Assembly elections around the corner, politicians in Telangana are ramping up their presence on social media, in a bid to increase voter engagement.
Karimnagar MP and former BJP Telangana president Bandi Sanjay Kumar, Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) president A Revanth Reddy, BJP MLA Etela Rajender, and Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) minister Talasani Srinivas Yadav are just a few of the many candidates who are currently active on social media.
“A majority of the youth in Telangana are active on social media. It is a good platform for the leaders to become more visible and maintain a connect with supporters and voters,” a Congress campaign manager said.
Telangana will go to polls on November 30.
Eager to target a growing vote base, politicians are not just posting details of their daily campaign activities but are also sharing their travel route maps, providing information on when they will be available to meet people, posting photos regularly etc.
Many are also reacting in real time to developments like income tax raids on political leaders. For example, within a few minutes of reports of IT raids on Congress Palair nominee Ponguleti Srinivas Reddy, TPCC chief A Revanth Reddy posted messages accusing the BRS and BJP of colluding to intimidate Congress leaders.
Kumar, Reddy, and Yadav also regularly share couplets from Telangana folk songs to describe a certain issue in a certain constituency. Ahead of a public meeting at Khanapur Assembly seat in Adilabad district, Reddy posted, “Komaram Bheem maaku spurti, Telangana bhavita maa arti. (Komaram Bheem (tribal leader) is our inspiration, Telangana’s future is our aim)”.
పోడు భూములకు పట్టాలైనా…
బీడు భూములకు నీటి పరవళ్లైనా…
చేసింది కాంగ్రెస్… రేపు చేసేదీ కాంగ్రెస్సే#Adilabad#MaarpuKavaliCongressRavali#CongressVijayabheriYatra #CongressWinningTelangana#Congress6Guarantees#KCRNeverAgain #ByeByeKCR pic.twitter.com/ph2cQOA0KW
— Revanth Reddy (@revanth_anumula) November 8, 2023
Kumar and Reddy have also started posting details of their daily schedule on social media handles, including their road shows and public meetings. Both provide updates on an almost hourly basis, with their first posts coming as early as 7 am. “They do not post these messages themselves but they pass their message to aides who post it on their behalf. But they keep themselves abreast of all the developments through the day,” one of Kumar’s campaign planners said.
Senior BRS leader Srinivas Yadav, minister for animal husbandry, fisheries, Dairy Development Corporation and cinematography, has also started posting regular updates of his campaigning and political meetings in Telugu and English. Another leader who has become active on social media is Nizamabad BJP MP Arvind Dharmapuri, who is contesting from the Korutla Assembly constituency.
BRS MLC K Kavitha, who is not contesting but is actively campaigning in Nizamabad, is also quite active on social media now.