Polling in Kakinada by and large peaceful

Staff Reporter

Sporadic incidents of violence reported in a few places

Kakinada: Elections for Kakinada Lok Sabha seat and seven Assembly segments (Tuni, Jaggampeta, Pithapuram, Peddapuram, Prathipadu, Kakinada City and Kakinada Rural) under it were peaceful on Thursday barring sporadic incidents of violence. Electronic voting machines developed technical snags at a few places and polling personnel failed to operate them properly, resulting in delayed commencement of voting. There was a large turnout of women and youth and for a good number of the latter it was the first opportunity to vote. At a few places, PRP activists were holding placards depicting the rail engine which is their party symbol, to remind the voters about it.

Tight security arrangements by the district police and other security personnel drawn from the CISF had a deterrent effect on trouble-mongers. The security forces could keep the situation under control but for some minor incidents.

Pradesh Congress Committee secretary Pantham Venkateswara Rao was reportedly taken into custody at a polling station in Kakinada city on the charge of influencing voters and released shortly before the polling came to an end. Kakinada MP M.M. Pallam Raju and Kakinada city candidate Dwarampudi Chandrasekhara Reddy asked the Superintendent of Police Charu Sinha to let them know the reasons for detaining Mr. Rao and requested for his immediate release but the SP turned down their plea.

Kajuluru MPP Tamma Rao was beaten up by Praja Rajyam Party (PRP) activists, who accused him of seeking votes for the Congress candidate, Social Welfare Minister Pilli Subhaschandra Bose. The police brought the situation under control by using force.

Tension prevails

Tension prevailed at Perumallapuram village in Thondangi mandal in Tuni Assembly constituency as a big number of voters who found their names missing from electoral rolls protested against official apathy. The police resorted to mild lathi-charge at U.Kotthapalli when the workers of PRP and TDP threatened to disrupt the polling, raising objections to the alleged influencing of voters by the local reporter of a Telugu newspaper in favour of the ruling party.

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