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Amid Reports Of Prashant Kishor Joining Congress, I-PAC Seals Deal With Rival TRS To Lead 2023 Poll Campaign

Amid Prashant Kishor's discussions with Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao for second consecutive day on Sunday, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) on Sunday confirmed that it has signed a deal with Indian Political Action Committee (I-PAC) founded by the election strategist.

Updated: April 25, 2022 9:05 AM IST

By News Desk | Edited by Sanstuti Nath

Amid Reports Of Prashant Kishor Joining Congress, I-PAC Seals Deal With Rival TRS To Lead 2023 Poll Campaign
K Chandrasekhar Rao and Prashant Kishor (Photo/IANS)

Hyderabad: To strengthen the political base ahead of the assembly election scheduled to be held by the end of next year in the state, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) on Sunday confirmed that it has signed a deal with the Indian Political Action Committee (I-PAC) founded by election strategist Prashant Kishor. The development came following Kishor’s back to back meetings with Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao for two consecutive days.

During a closed media interaction, TRS Working President KT Rama Rao confirmed that the TRS is working with I-PAC but claimed that this has nothing to do with Kishor. “PK (as Kishor is popularly known) is the founder but I don’t know who is running it. PK introduced us to I-PAC and it is working with us,” he said.

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Rao claimed Kishor has disassociated himself from I-PAC which is working with multiple parties across the country. “It’s not just PK we had interactions with. We had multiple iterations of discussions with several others. We spoke to Sunil and others. I-PAC is what we narrowed down to,” he said.

On TRS’ association with Prashant Kishor

The TRS leader, however, was evasive on whether the agreement is only for 2023 Assembly polls or 2024 Lok Sabha elections as well as the nature of discussions they are holding with the poll strategist. “If a gentleman who is into politics, who is into advisory or helpful roles in other places, offers you some inputs, would you not take them?” he asked.

Rao, however, did not agree that there will be a conflict of interest as Kishor is planning to join the Congress. “Has he joined Congress? Isn’t it hypothetical, right now? I don’t know whether he is joining or not,” said KTR.

On Alliance With Congress

The TRS leader also dismissed the possibility of his party approaching Congress. “Why will we approach Congress. Where is Congress? Rahul Gandhi can’t win his own seat, how will he make others win. Someone who can’t win his own constituency or state, how will he win other states and the country,” he asked.

He, however, was evasive to questions about the possibility of TRS working with Congress for evolving a national alternative. “I am not an astrologer to say what will happen six months from now,” KTR said when asked if TRS would be working with Congress for Lok Sabha elections.

On Role Of I-PAC

KTR, however, said the TRS will win elections on its own and I-PAC will just supplement it. “If we don’t have public support, they can’t save us. They will just supplement. PK or some outsider can’t save a sinking ship. If you are on the right path, your efforts can be augmented, majorities can improve, a number of seats can improve and certain sections of the population can be connected which otherwise would not have connected,” he said.

“All these strategists can only augment or complement your efforts. To overstress or overemphasise that I-PAC or political strategist will win you an election or PK or somebody made Mamata Ji (Mamata Banerjee) or Stalin Ji (M.K. Stalin) Chief Minister is an exaggeration,” he added.

The TRS leader said that if his party has to come back stronger in 2023, it will have to do it on its own strengths and merits. “Anybody else is only going to augment. You are overemphasising or overstressing extraneous factors. I-PAC is an extraneous institution which will only give inputs,” he noted.

He further explained that I-PAC will help reach people in the age group of 18-30 as the party needs different mediums and different forms of communication. He pointed out that digital media has become an important platform and the TRS doesn’t want to miss out on it.

He exuded confidence that KCR will re-write history to lead the TRS to the third consecutive poll victory, a record in south India.

(With IANS inputs)

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