Good voter turnout in Telangana Bypolls

The by-elections to six assembly constituencies in Telangana region concluded peacefully on Sunday barring few stray incidents. The total votes polled in all the constituencies put together was 71%.

Braving the scorching summer heat, large number of voters exercised their adult franchise in all the constituencies which had become a prestige issue for all political parties for various reasons.

Enthusiasm among voters marked the polling which began amid tight security at 8 am in five districts of Telangana. Large number of women had queued up before the polling stations. Some were disappointed as they could not find their names in the voters’ list.

State Chief Electoral Officer Bhanwar Lal said that overall turnout recorded in the by-election was 67 per cent. Adilabad – 61 per cent as against (68 in 2009 election) , Kollapur – 75 per cent ( 70.55 per cent in 2009) , Mahabubnagar – 70 per cent (55.83% in 2009), Nagarkurnool – 70 per cent ( 66 per cent in 2009) , Station Ghanpur – 64 per cent ( 73 per cent in 2009) and in Kamareddy, 68 per cent ( 72.71 per cent in 2009 election).

Police in Station Ghanpur constituency in Warangal district booked case against Congress MP S Rajaiah for alleged violation of poll code. He was booked under Section 151 of the Code of Criminal Procedure for camping in the constituency despite orders from the election authorities to all non-locals to leave.

In Nagarkurnool constituency in Mahabubnagar district, supporters of former minister and independent candidate N. Janardhan Reddy clashed with activists of the ruling Congress party. About 20 people were arrested.

The CEO said that based on the complaints, EVMs have been replaced in three polling booths in Kollapur, Kamareddy and Adilabad constituencies. Action will be taken against Congress MP Rajaiah for violating election code. District Collector sent a report to him on the violation of code by the MP when the polling was in progress in Station Ghanpur constituency.

The MP reportedly campaigned in a polling booth in support of Congress candidate. The official said the counting will take place on March 21 and the results will be announced on the same day. Arrangements including deployment of forces have been made in five centres where the counting will begin at 8.00 am. [Inputs from The HANS India]

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