AP records 78.36% voter turnout for Assembly elections, 78.25% for Lok Sabha polls

For the Assembly polling, turnout was highest in the Dharmavaram Assembly constituency (88.61%) and lowest in Paderu (55.45%).
Voters waiting at polling station in Andhra Pradesh
Voters waiting at polling station in Andhra Pradesh
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Andhra Pradesh recorded 78.36% voter turnout for Assembly elections and 78.25% for Lok Sabha polls simultaneously held on Monday, May 13. For the Assembly polling, turnout was highest in the Dharmavaram Assembly constituency (88.61%) and lowest in Paderu (55.45%), while for the Lok Sabha polls, Amalapaluram recorded the highest polling percentage of 83.19 and Visakhapatnam saw the lowest with 68%. According to reports, polling continued beyond the scheduled time and extended till midnight in some locations as voters had lined up in hundreds. 

There were long queues of voters waiting at about 3,500 polling stations at 6 pm, the concluding hour. In most booths, polling was completed by 10 pm, while in places like the Chintala colony in Tiruvuru (SC) Assembly segment in NTR district, the Gotivada Agraharam in Madugula mandal of Anakapalli district, and Bheemunipatnam in the Padmanbham mandal of Visakhapatnam district, polling continued till midnight. It was in the 2019 general elections that such long polling hours were previously reported. 

Thousands of Andhra voters residing in the neighbouring states of Telangana, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and other parts of the country also came to their native places to cast votes. About 12 lakh voters of Andhra Pradesh reside in Hyderabad alone, and buses and trains were crowded with families who were on their way to their hometowns to participate in the polling. 

Though the anticipated voter turnout was about 80%, the actual turnout was slightly lower than in the 2019 elections (79.86%). More than 4.14 crore voters were eligible to cast their votes in the elections for 175-member Assembly and 25 Lok Sabha seats in the single-phase polling, and the election authorities had set up 46,389 polling centres across the state. A total of 2,387 candidates were in the fray for the 175 Assembly seats, while 454 contestants contested for 25 Lok Sabha seats.

Meanwhile, severe violence was reported in the Palnadu and Chittoor districts. In the Macherla constituency in Palnadu district, clashes erupted between TDP and YSRCP workers who set the car of local party leaders on fire. In Chittoor, in a violent altercation between TDP and YSRCP workers, a few party men were reportedly injured grievously and were hospitalised. 

Assessing the voter turnout in Andhra Pradesh, both the ruling YSR Congress and the opposition TDP-JSP-BJP alliance claimed that the heavy poll percentage indicated their victory.

In 2019, the YSRCP, led by YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, came to power with a landslide majority of 151 out of 175 Assembly seats and won 22 of 25 Lok Sabha seats. The ruling party, TDP, secured only 23 Assembly and three Lok Sabha seats. Pawan Kalyan’s Jana Sena Party (JSP), which had an alliance with the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and the Left parties, won one Assembly seat while the BJP drew a blank. 

This time, the TDP-BJP and JSP parties joined hands to take on YSRCP. TDP contested 144 Assembly and 17 Lok Sabha seats. JSP fielded candidates in 21 Assembly and two Lok Sabha constituencies while BJP contested 10 Assembly and six Lok Sabha seats.

With inputs from IANS

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