Amid tight security, Tirupati LS bypoll to be held on Saturday

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Tirupati, Apr 16 (PTI) After a fortnight-long high voltage campaign, bypoll to the Tirupati Lok Sabha Constituency (SC Reserved) will be held on April 17 amid tight security and in line with the COVID-19 protocol.

Tight security arrangements have been put in place at all the 2,471 polling stations in all seven assembly segments of the parliamentaryconstituency, a senior government official said.

Tirupati, an SC reserved constituency, is going to the bypoll due to the death of sitting YSRC member Balli Durga Prasad Rao in September last year.

Targeting the ruling YSRCP over alleged corruption and nepotism, BJP president JP Nadda and ally Janasena party chief Pawan Kalyan had separately campaigned for BJP candidate K Ratnaprabha, a retired IAS officer.

Former Union Minister of State Panabaka Lakshmi is the Telugu Desam nominee while another former Union Minister of State Chinta Mohan is the Congress candidate.

Telugu Desam Party supremo N Chandrababu Naidu and other leaders also campaigned vigorously for their party candidate.

Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy had cancelled his election rally here saying he did not want to put the people in the danger amid the COVID-19 surge.

However, he deputed several ministers and other leaders for canvassing votes in favour of the YSRCP candidate M Gurumurthy, a political novice, besides writing a personal letter urging electors to bless his party once again in the bypoll.

There are 17,09,472 electors in this constituency comprising seven assembly segements and spread over Chittoor and Nellore districts. PTI COR BN BN