Several BJP bigwigs, including Union Home Minister Amit Shah and party national president JP Nadda, were arrive in Hyderabad over the next few days to campaign for the party in Greater Hyderabad civic polls. The party will also bring Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath to bolster its campaign for the December 1 elections to Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC).
While Nadda will hold a roadshow in Hyderabad on Friday, Adityanath will hold one on November 28 and Shah a day later. Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be in the city, although not for election purposes -- he will visit Bharat Biotech on November 29.
After central minister Prakash Javadekar and BJP youth wing chief Tejasvi Surya, another union minister Smriti Irani landed in Hyderabad on Wednesday as part of the party campaign.
BJP OBC Morcha president K Laxman said services of national leaders were being used to reach out to various sections of voters in the short time available for the campaign. BJP's women wing president Vanathi Srinivasan is also campaigning.
Union minister of state for home G Kishan Reddy, a Lok Sabha member from Secunderabad, is already actively campaigning for BJP.
Buoyed by its recent victory in Dubbak Assembly by-election, the BJP appears determined to wrest GHMC from TRS. "It was Dubbak yesterday, GHMC today and Assembly elections tomorrow," said Kishan Reddy.
BJP leaders see GHMC elections as semifinal before 2023 Assembly elections and the party is targeting the state to expand its presence in South India.
Surya, who campaigned for two days, exuded confidence that the series of victories for BJP will begin from Hyderabad. "It's not mere municipal elections. The whole country is looking towards Hyderabad. Winds of change are blowing in Hyderabad and Telangana," he said.
The BJP had won only four seats in 150-member GHMC in 2016 elections. In the 2018 Assembly elections, it could win only one seat. However, in Lok Sabha elections last year it put up an impressive performance to win four of 17 seats in the state.
Meanwhile, Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) working president KT Rama Rao hoped that the central ministers will not come to Hyderabad empty-handed but will bring funds from the Centre for the flood-affected Hyderabad.
(With inputs from agencies)