Since the 1990s, Telangana has been witnessing a noteworthy trend in politics where ‘victims of discrimination and official apathy’ have been contesting elections to advocate for their causes. In the 2023 Assembly elections, Karne Shireesha, also known as Barrelakka, a graduate-turned-dairy farmer, gained prominence by challenging bigwigs in the Kollapur Assembly constituency, focusing on the issue of unemployment and garnering support

from civil society.

The upcoming general elections in the Hyderabad parliamentary constituency will witness another such candidate, not vying for victory but seeking to shed light on alleged caste discrimination. Dr. J Padmaja, awarded a doctorate in Chemistry by Osmania University in 2013, contends she has been unable to secure employment in her department at the university due to purported caste bias and persecution.
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