Bypolls end peacefully in Tamil Nadu, Puducherry

Polling in the assembly byelections to one constituency each in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry passed off peacefully on Thursday.

Tiruchirapalli/Puducherry: Polling in the
assembly byelections to one constituency each in Tamil Nadu
and Union Territory of Puducherry passed off peacefully on Thursday
with an estimated 61-65 per cent and 84 per cent of electorate
casting their votes respectively.

In the bypoll to Tiruchirappalli West constituency, seen as
an acid test for the ruling AIADMK after its landslide win in
the April assembly polls, about 61 to 65 per cent of over 2.08
lakh electorate cast their votes, officials said quoting
initial figures.

Election officials said the polling went off peacefully and
there were no untoward incidents.

AIADMK and its arch rival DMK, who dumped their allies,
have slugged it out in the run up to the poll, making it a
keen contest.

The ruling party is seeking to cash in on sympathy factor
in the wake of death of its Minister Mariam Pitchai and the
DMK has fielded former minister KN Nehru, who came out of
jail on the eve of the poll after his arrest on land grabbing
charges. Nehru had lost to Pitchai in the assembly polls.

In neighbouring union territory of Puducherry, an
estimated 84 per cent of the 29,005 electors cast their
franchise in the bypoll to Indira Nagar segment, vacated by
Chief Minister N Rangasamy being the second constituency won
by him in the April polls.

The outcome of the poll would be crucial for AINRC which
with a strength of 15 in the 30-member assembly formed its
government with the support of an indepedent. With Rangasamy
resigning one of his two seats, the party`s strength has come
down to 14.

Ruling AINRC`s A Tamilselvane, nephew of Rangasamy, was
pitted against Congress` K Aroumougame and AIADMK nominee
A Venkateswararan.

Counting of votes in Indira Nagar would be taken up on
October 17 while it would be on October 20 in Tiruchirappalli


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