Bharatiya Janata Party President Amit Shah on Saturday kicked off the party’s election campaign in the state at a press conference in Hyderabad. Shah came down heavily on Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao for calling early elections in the state despite speaking in support of simultaneous elections earlier.

“Why has the state government imposed so much expenditure on people when the elections could have been held along with the Lok Sabha polls next year,” he asked at a press conference in Hyderabad to kick off the party’s election campaign in the state.

On September 6, Rao had dissolved the state Assembly, paving the way for early elections. The state was earlier scheduled to go to the polls by May 2019.

Amit Shah also admitted that the Centre is “concerned” about the steep increase in fuel prices. He said the Centre has taken note of the price rise and of the weakening rupee. “We have understood the anxiety of the people in this regard... We shall soon come out with an action plan.” He claimed that fuel prices were increasing due to the “international market fluctuations in crude oil prices”.

Shah said the BJP will contest all seats in Telangana and “emerge as a strong and decisive force in the state”. He claimed the chief minister had made the decision to dissolve the Assembly for his political gains.

Citing the state’s proposal in 2017 for reservation for the Muslim community, Shah accused the Telangana Rashtra Samithi government of “doing politics of vote bank and appeasement” in the state. “Is it not appeasement politics to propose 12% reservation for minority?” Shah said. “They know that our Constitution does not allow reservation based on religion.”