Around 68.4% Poll percentage in Telangana

Around 68.4% Poll percentage in Telangana

According to officials, voting was progressing by and large peacefully in all the 119 constituencies of the state and as of 3 pm the voter turnout was 56.17 per cent. PTI photo

Barring sporadic incidents of minor clashes, the polling in the state of Telangana concluded. The state witnessed a moderate polling percentage of 68.4 in the elections to its state assembly held by 5 pm on Friday, when the polling came to an end. The percentage of polling might go up slightly, as the Election Commission has permitted voters, who were already in the queue at the time of closure of polling hours, to cast their votes.

With the lukewarm response from the city dwellers, Hyderabad recorded a very poor turnout of voters at the polling stations, recording only 56 per cent. With this, the total polling percentage remained almost the same as in 2014 elections. However, Medak recorded the highest poll percentage of over 77 per cent.

In 13 assembly constituencies identified as sensitive in view of their proximity to Maoist-affected areas in the borders of Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh, the polling closed at 4 pm itself. As per the tentative estimates, these 13 constituencies recorded 65-70 per cent polling till the closing hours. “Polling went on peacefully without any law and order problem in these constituencies. We shall take all precautions till the Electronic Voting Machines and other equipment reaches the strong rooms safely, Director General of Police M Mahender Reddy said.

TRS president and caretaker chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao after casting his vote at his native village in Chintamadaka of Siddipet district in the afternoon, expressed confidence that his party would come back to power in Telangana with a huge majority. “The mood of the people is very positive towards the TRS and we shall win hands down,” KCR said.

Pradesh Congress Committee president N Uttam Kumar Reddy said Maha Kootami was going to form the next government in Telangana. “According to the inputs we have received, we shall get 80 seats,” he claimed in the evening.

In Amangal of Kalwakurthy constituency, some BJP workers allegedly pelted stones at Congress candidate Ch Vamsichand Reddy. An injured Reddy shifted to Hyderabad for treatment. At Indiranagar police station, there was a clash between Bharatiya Janata Party agent and the TRS workers, when the former objected to former minister and TRS candidate from Khairatabad Danam Nagender coming to Indiranagar polling station wearing a pink scarf, symbolizing the TRS. BJP candidate Ch Ramachandra Reddy lodges complaint with EC and the police against the TRS leaders.

At Vellatur village of Huzurnagar constituency represented by Telangana PCC chief Capt N Uttam Kumar Reddy, voters roughed up a polling official who forced a disabled voter to exercise his vote to a party against his will. The official admitted to casting five votes in the name of helping elderly and disabled voters. At Tirumalagiri of Tungaturthi constituency, the voters expressed anger at the presiding officer for locking the polling booth in the afternoon for lunch. They alerted the higher officials who rushed to the spot and opened the polling station.

Apart from the issue of faulty EVMs which delayed voting by up to two hours in several polling stations in Telangana, there were complaints of missing names of voters at several places. Ace badminton player Jwala Gutta also fumed at the authorities on finding that her name was missing in the electoral list.

At several places, people whose names were missing from the voters’ list protested at the polling stations. In Kamareddy district, about 300 people sat on the road, holding up their voter ID cards to register their protest. In Khairtabad constituency, too, more than 100 voters protested at the polling station after their names were found deleted from the voters’ list.

Former Maoist ideologue and balladeer Gaddar exercised his franchise for the first time in his life. The 70-year old singer got himself registered as a voter in April last. After casting his vote at Venkatapuram, Gaddar said vote was also a powerful weapon to bring change in the society. “It can herald a new revolution in the country,” he said.

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