Coronavirus outbreak: Andhra local body polls deferred, Jagan hits out

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Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy

Andhra Pradesh State Election Commissioner Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar on Sunday postponed the upcoming local body elections by six weeks in the backdrop of the coronavirus outbreak in the country. The move invoked a sharp response from Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy who accused Kumar of issuing the notification without having consulted his government.

The CM also accused Kumar of catering to wishes of former chief minister and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N Chandrababu Naidu.

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In the notification, Kumar also ordered the transfer of District Collectors of Guntur and Chittoor, and suspended the Circle Inspector of Macharla Town in Guntur following the attack on two TDP leaders, allegedly by YSRCP workers, on March 11.

Lashing out at the notification, Jagan said: “From where did the SEC get this power to postpone elections without consulting anyone or transfer district collectors?... The SEC or his office did not seek any inputs from the health secretary or chief secretary regarding the measures we have taken to tackle coronavirus in the state... He has been taking orders from Chandrababu Naidu... I have complained to the Governor and requested him to ask Kumar to change his behaviour...”