Polling in about 400 booths across different districts of Andhra Pradesh went on till midnight on Thursday. Technical glitches in the electronic voting machines delayed the process, reported PTI. Andhra Pradesh held simultaneous Lok Sabha and Assembly elections on Thursday.
The polling was scheduled to get over at 6 pm. “Even if it is midnight, those in the queue by 6 pm can cast their votes,” state Chief Electoral Officer Gopal Krishna Dwivedi had said. Till 6 pm, over 74% voting was recorded for 175 Assembly and 25 Lok Sabha seats.
During the day, the polling process was halted at many booths due to technical glitches in EVMs. It resumed after the authorities rectified the defects and replaced some of the faulty machines. Chief Minister Chandrabubu Naidu wrote a letter to the chief election commissioner, demanding a re-poll in 150 booths, reported IANS.
Naidu’s son Nara Lokesh, who is contesting the Mangalagiri Assembly seat, staged a protest at a polling station in Tadepalli town. “Voters are made to wait in queue for hours because the EVMs and VVPATs did not function,” he had said. “Not even drinking water was available for them,” Lokesh said. Leaders of opposition YSR Congress Party staged a counter protest.
Voting in Andhra Pradesh was also marred by violence. As many as 25 incidents of violence were reported through the day. A worker from the TDP and another of the YSR Congress were killed in violence in Anantapur and Chitoor districts while over a dozen were injured in clashes at various places.