Peaceful polling in Andhra by-polls (Lead)

May 8th, 2011 - 3:18 pm ICT by IANS  

Hyderabad, May 8 (IANS) About 35 percent votes were polled by noon in the Kadapa Lok Sabha and Pulivendula assembly constituencies in Andhra Pradesh Sunday. Barring minor incidents, voting was peaceful, officials said.

Polling was brisk as long queues were seen in the majority of the 1,512 polling centres. There was marked enthusiasm among women. Polling began at 8 a.m. and will continue till 5 p.m.

State chief electoral office Bhanwarlal told reporters in Hyderabad that no untoward incident was reported in the first four hours of polling.

A delegation of the main opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) met him and complained that the YSR Congress party was indulging in electoral malpractices by threatening its polling agents.

D.L. Ravindra Reddy, the Congress party candidate for Kadapa, also alleged that the election commission was acting in a partisan manner by ignoring the malpractices of the YSR Congress party.

YSR Congress president Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy said the Congress government was using money power to woo voters.

He, however, exuded confidence that he would retain the Kadapa Lok Sabha seat and his mother would get re-elected from Pulivendula.

About 13 million voters, including 680,566 women, can vote in the Kadapa Lok Sabha constituency.

Some 11,100 personnel from state police and central paramilitary forces were deployed.

A total of 42 candidates are in fray in Kadapa while 25 candidates are testing their fortunes in Pulivendula, one of the seven assembly segments of Kadapa parliamentary constituency.

Election authorities have deployed 7,779 polling personnel. The polling process was webcast live.

The by-elections were caused by the resignation of Jaganmohan Reddy and his mother Y.S. Vijayalaxmi as MP and legislator respectively in November last year.

In Kadapa, Jaganmohan Reddy, Ravindra Reddy of Congress and M.V. Mysoora Reddy of TDP are the key candidates.

In Pulivendula, Vijayalaxmi is also locked in a triangular contest against her brother-in-law Y.S. Vivekananda Reddy of the Congress and B. Tech Ravi of the TDP.

Jaganmohan Reddy broke away from the Congress after months of dissidence following his father and chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy’s death in a chopper crash in 2009.

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