Hyderabad: The by-election in Huzurnagar Assembly constituency was peaceful till 1 pm on Monday. The Election Commission (EC) made stringent security measures to conduct the by-election peacefully. The returning officer, in an official statement, said that 52.89 per cent polling was recorded till 1 pm and 31.34 per cent of polling till 11 pm. Political parties are expecting over 70 per cent polling till 5 pm.

About 2,500 policemen are on duty in the Assembly constituency. About 1,708 Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) installed at 302 polling stations. As many as 2,36,842 voters in Huzurnagar Assembly constituency will elect their MLA from the 28 candidates in the fray.

The EC officials identified 79 sensitive polling stations and enhanced security at these places. CCTV cameras and webcasting is in every polling station.

TRS has fielded Saidireddy in Huzurnagar by-election. Padmavathi, the wife of Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) Chief Uttam Kumar Reddy, is contesting on a Congress ticket. The BJP and the Telugu Desam have fielded Kota Rama Rao and Chava Kiranmai, respectively.

TPCC chief Uttam Kumar Reddy won as MLA from Huzurnagar Assembly elections held on December 2018. Subsequently, Mr Reddy contested as an MP candidate from Nalgonda Lok Sabha constituency in the general elections held in 2019. Retaining the Nalgonda MP seat, Mr Uttam Kumar resigned as MLA from the Huzurnagar Assembly constituency, and this led to the by-election.

TRS candidate Saidireddy lost to Mr Uttam Kumar Reddy in the December 2018 elections. TRS has again fielded him in the Huzurnagar Assembly constituency.

An EC official said that EVMs were tamper-proof. No one can hack or reprogramme the EVM.

Former MP and Congress leader Konda Vishveshavar Reddy criticised the dictatorship of Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao.

“Telangana people are fed up with the adamant TRS government. KCR is ruling the state like a dictator. The demands of the RTC employees are reasonable. The High Court suggested talks between the unions and the state government. But, the TRS government is not coming forward to hold talks with the RTC unions. I advise Mr Rao not to run the government by involving temple priests and performing havans,” said Mr Reddy.

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