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Telangana bypolls for 12 seats today

Polling takes place today for by-elections to 12 assembly constituencies, including five with ballot papers, in Andhra Pradesh's Telangana region.

india Updated: Jul 27, 2010 08:50 IST

Polling takes place on Tuesday for by-elections to 12 assembly constituencies, including five with ballot papers, in Andhra Pradesh's Telangana region.

All arrangements are being finalised for the polling, which began from 7 am will last till 5 pm, state Chief Electoral Officer IV Subba Rao told reporters here.

State Congress president D Srinivas, TRS chief K Chandrasekhar Rao's son KT Rama Rao are among prominent candidates in fray.

The bypolls are necessitated by the resignation of sitting MLAs - 10 from TRS and one each from TDP and BJP - in support of separate Telangana. TRS is expected to benefit from the widespread sentiment in favour of the statehood demand in the region.

Ballot boxes are being used in Yellareddy, Koratla, Sircilla, Huzurabad and Warangal West, while EVMs are going to be used in Sirpur, Chennur (SC), Mancherial, Nizamabad Urban, Dharmapuri (SC), Vemulawada and Siddipet.

Ballot boxes have to be used in the five seats as the number of candidates in fray in these segments has exceeded the maximum limit of 64 for electronic voting machines (EVMs).

With the existing technology, the EVMs cannot function if the number of candidates in a segment is over 64. As many as 23,59,228 voters, including 11,84,111 women, are eligible to exercise their franchise.

Subba Rao said 1,582 EVMs and 1,201 ballot boxes will be used. The total number of contesting candidates is 435 that include 72 in seven seats where EVMs are being used and 363 in five segments where ballot papers will be used.

The highest and lowest number of nominees is 78 in Sircilla and four in Vemulawada. The total number of polling stations is 2,783.

The EC has identified 450 polling stations as hyper-sensitive and 460 as sensitive. In addition to district police force, 80 companies (around 8,000 personnel) of Central Para-Military Forces (CPMF) will be deployed, Subba Rao said.

The EC will be doing videography in the polling stations and 2,039 video cameras have been provided. Seventeen CC cameras will be installed at strong rooms where the EVMs and ballot boxes will be kept. Twenty such cameras will be arranged at counting centres.

Subba Rao said 12 Central and 2783 micro-observers would oversee the polling process. The number of polling officers is 13,915.

He said no person would be allowed to either carry or use mobile phones, cordless phones or wireless sets at the polling stations. Counting will be held on July 30.

First Published: Jul 27, 2010 08:47 IST