RK Nagar bypoll highlights: Dinakaran refutes bribe charges in prestige battle against EPS-OPS camp
Voting for the RK Nagar by-election saw a turnout of 77.68%, amid complaints and allegations of widespread corrupt practices. Here are the highlights.india Updated: Dec 21, 2017 22:32 IST
Voting for the by-election to the high-stakes RK Nagar assembly constituency in Tamil Nadu saw a turnout of more than 77%, amid complaints and allegations of widespread corrupt practices.
AIADMK’s E Madhusudhanan, independent candidate TTV Dinakaran and DMK’s N Marudhu Ganesh are among the top contenders contesting in the by-election that was necessitated as the constituency fell vacant after the death of AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa in December 2016.
Here are the highlights:
9.30pm: A record 77.68% voter turnout witnessed in the bypoll, say election officials.
5.55pm: Over 60% turnout recorded till the end of voting at 5pm, sources at election office said.
4.15pm: RK Nagar sees brisker polling after 2G verdict, records 58% polling till 4pm.
12.20pm: In Arunachal, voting for the high stakes bypolls in two assembly constituencies — Pakke-Kessang and Likabali — began amid tight security. Around 150 polling personnel have been deployed for Pakke-Kessang seat and 220 for Likabali, joint chief electoral officer DJ Bhattacharjee said.
Former deputy chief minister Kameng Dolo of the Congress locks horns with BJP nominee BR Waghe in Pakke-Kessang, where 7,455 voters are exercising their franchise at 29 polling stations.
10.55am: Meanwhile, a special court acquitted all accused in the 2G spectrum allocation scam cases, deciding the fate of former telecom minister A Raja and DMK MP Kanimozhi.
10.34am: TTV Dinakaran, contesting as an independent candidate, refutes BJP’s allegation of bribing voters, says “people trust me, they are with me.”
10am: According to Election Commission officials, 7.32% voters have cast their ballots since polling began at 8 am. Over two lakh voters are eligible to decide the fate of 59 candidates in one of the smallest constituencies in Tamil Nadu.
9.56am: AIADMK candidate E Madhusudhanan casts his vote, says “God and Amma’s grace is with us.”
8.36am: Unprecedented security has been put in place by the election authorities after several complaints of misuse of money power, which at one stage posed the risk of another cancellation of the bypoll. The local BJP unit demanded the cancellation of then bypoll, which is witnessing a high stakes battle with the AIADMK’s two factions slugging it out for Amma’s legacy.
8.22am: Chennai City Police Commissioner AK Viswanathan says: “We will ensure free and fair elections, today. Have deployed additional forces.” Over 3,000 police personnel and 15 companies are para military forces have been deployed on poll duty to prevent any untoward incident.
8.15am: DMK candidate N Marudhu Ganesh casts his vote at a polling booth in Chennai. “Whether it is Rs 6000 or Rs 60,000, we are going to win; voters of RK Nagar will teach a lesson to AIADMK this time.”
8.08am: People queue up to vote in the RK Nagar bypoll in Chennai.
8.03am: DMK candidate N Marudhu Ganesh and BJP’s Karu Nagarajan reach polling booths in Chennai to cast his vote as polling begins. DMK alleges that a sum of Rs 100 crore is already said to have been spent by ruling AIADMK led by EPS-OPS combine to win the bypoll.
#TopStory RK Nagar bypolls to take place today, the constituency was once held by late TN CM Jayalalithaa. AIADMK’s E. Madhusudhanan, Independent candidate TTV Dhinakaran and DMK’s N. Marudhu Ganesh among the top contenders (Visuals from a polling booth in #Chennai) #TamilNadu pic.twitter.com/4kxqC6U42O— ANI (@ANI) December 21, 2017
7.50am: A video said to be of late Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa was released by a leader of the TTV Dinakaran camp on Wednesday, a day before a by-election to the city’s RK Nagar assembly constituency that fell vacant after the AIADMK leader’s death last December. (Read more)
(With agency inputs)