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Andhra Pradesh records 55.49 per cent voter turnout in LS, Assembly polls till 3 pm

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NewsDrum Desk
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Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh), May 13 (PTI) A voter turnout of over 55 per cent was registered in 25 Lok Sabha constituencies in Andhra Pradesh and the 175-member state assembly till 3 pm, the Election Commission said on Monday.

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Polling began at 7 am in the state and will go on till 6 pm, barring a few places where it will conclude one or two hours earlier.

Governor S Abdul Nazeer, Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy and TDP supremo N Chandrababu Naidu along with their respective family members, were among the early voters in Andhra Pradesh today.

Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) president Y S Sharmila cast her vote at Idupulupaya, preceded by a visit to her father and former chief minister Y S Rajasekhar Reddy's grave.

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A specially-abled person voted using a braille voter slip in Kakinada Rural constituency while at Edulagudem village in Eluru's Agiripalli mandal, 104-year-old voter J Venkata Ratnam also exercised his democratic right.

The Election Commission arranged buses for voters of remote villages to reach polling stations while a group of transgenders exercised their franchise in Narasaraopeta constituency.

The TDP and YSRCP traded allegations of violence against each other in the state, especially in Palnadu, Kadapa and Annamayya districts.

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YSRCP also wrote to EC alleging poll code violations by rival TDP in assembly constituencies such as Vemuru, Darsi, Icchapuram, Kuppam, Macherla, Markapuram, Palakonda, Pedakurapaudu and others.

It alleged that TDP leaders captured five polling booths in Vemuru constituency and requested additional police forces and immediate action.

The ruling party also claimed that the polling officer of booth number 57 in Kuppam assembly constituency was working for the TDP, colluding with the opposition party leaders to allow them to rig votes openly.

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YSRCP complained that government volunteers who had resigned from their jobs were not being allowed to work as polling agents and staff.

Meanwhile, TDP alleged that YSRCP activists damaged three vehicles belonging to its Narasaraopeta Lok Sabha candidate L Sri Krishna Devarayalu.

Urging the poll panel to bring to book those responsible for the attack, Devarayalu told reporters that he may lodge a complaint over the incident and also insisted on conducting repolling at Dondapadu polling booth.

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Incidents of stray violence were reported from across the state.

At Dalavaipalli village in Railway Kodur constituency, an EVM was damaged. Cars belonging to the ruling party and TDP were also damaged, said a police official.

YSRCP MLA A Shiva Kumar allegedly slapped a voter in Tenali after an argument broke out over the lawmaker jumping the queue, following which the voter returned in kind.

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A TDP agent was assaulted at Nakkaladinne village in Myduruku constituency, leading to his hospitalisation.

The YSRCP alleged that party agent Suresh Reddy was stabbed at Mandi Krishnapuram village in Chittoor's Gudipala mandal.

TDP activists allegedly damaged the vehicle of senior YSRCP leader Nandigam Suresh, YSRCP said in a statement.

Further, it alleged that TDP supporters attacked party member B Anji Reddy at Aravallipadu in Darsi constituency, resulting in a head injury.

Meanwhile, TDP supremo Chandrababu Naidu alleged that there was "no peaceful atmosphere in the state for people to exercise their franchise".

"I severely condemn the violence reported since morning. YSRCP is implementing its plots in a concerted manner. Local police officials failed in averting violence in Macherla constituency," he said in a post on 'X'.

Further, he termed the inaction on complaints lodged by the opposition as wrong and called for maintaining law and order in Macherla.

Meanwhile, TDP MLC Mohammed Ahmed Shariff shot off a letter to Chief Electoral Officer Mukesh Kumar Meena, complaining about alleged attacks by YSRCP cadres on TDP supporters at Rentala village in Rentichintala mandal of Palnadu district.

TDP MLC P Anuradha wrote to the CEO alleging IVRS calls being made in the name of YSRCP chief Jagan Mohan Reddy and leader V Rajini.

She claimed it was a violation of the Model Code of Conduct.

The YSRCP is contesting in all 175 Assembly seats and 25 Lok Sabha segments in the state.

As part of a seat-sharing deal among NDA partners, the TDP was allocated 144 Assembly and 17 Lok Sabha constituencies while the BJP is contesting from six Lok Sabha and 10 Assembly seats.

Actor Pawan Kalyan-led Janasena is contesting two Lok Sabha and 21 Assembly seats. PTI GDK STH ROH

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