Candidates make all-out efforts to woo voters on the last day of poll campaigning

Candidates from major parties including the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and the YSR Congress (YSRC) made all-out efforts to woo the voters till the last minute as campaigning for the polls to six urban local bodies in Prakasam district came to an end on Friday evening.

“The election machinery is fully geared up to hold free and fair polls,” Prakasam Collector G.S.R.K.R.Vijaykumar told reporters after inspecting the arrangements being made in 219 polling booths for the elections to two municipalities of Chirala and Markapur and four Nagara Panchayats of Addanki, Chimakurthy, Giddalur and Kanigiri. Polling can’t be held in Ongole and Kandukur in view of legal tangle.

‘Sensitive’ booths under scanner

According to the Collector, the poll proceedings at 87 sensitive stations would be videographed and those would be supervised by an equal number of micro-observers. Special arrangements, including ramps, have been made for differently-abled voters to exercise their franchise, he said.

As many as 268 electronic voting machines (EVMS) will be used for 2.12 lakh people, including 1.07 lakh women who will be deciding the fate of 592 candidates in the fray in 142 wards. The Collector also declared that poll to one ward had been cancelled following the death of a candidate, while three contestants in Markapur had been elected unopposed.

Grapevines suggest that the TDP and the YSR Congress candidates had emerged major contenders, who left no stone unturned to impress upon the voters, with the civic polls being considered as a litmus test for the parties, in the run up to the elections to the Lok Sabha and State Assembly which would be held simultaneously. The ruling Congress is virtually out of the race as it could field candidates only in 50 wards.