Palnadu district in Andhra Pradesh tense after TDP workers unleash violence post elections

Most of the incidents of violence were due to clashes between the YSRCP and TDP workers over perceived violations of the Model Code of Conduct. 

BySouth First Desk

Published May 14, 2024 | 9:27 PMUpdatedMay 14, 2024 | 9:28 PM

Post poll violence in Andhra; Election Commission takes action

TDP workers allegedly went on a rampage in a village in Palnadu district in Andhra Pradesh, targetting houses of those who supported the ruling YSRCP in the just-concluded elections to Lok Sabha and the state assembly, police said on Tuesday, 14 May.

TDP cadres stormed into Kothaganeshunipadu village on Monday night and attacked people, they said.

On Tuesday, YSRCP Gurazala MLA K Mahesh Reddy visited the village to stand in solidarity with the people who were attacked.

Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Mukesh Kumar Meena directed officials to enforce house arrests wherever required, including registering cases following violent clashes reported in Tenali, Macherla and Anantapur.

Also Read: AP records approximately 68 percent voter turnout in Lok Sabha, Assembly polls

Violence in Palnadu

According to the official, there were nearly a dozen clashes reported in Palnadu district.

At Narasaropet in the district, police fired rubber bullets to disperse a crowd that was apparently about to attack YSRCP candidate G Srinivas after an argument between him and the TDP workers.

According to CEO Meena, three TDP agents were abducted in the Bokaramanda village under the Punganur Assembly segment in the Chittoor district.

According to the complaint lodged with the ECI by TDP district in-charge Jagan Mohan Raju, the agents were forcibly taken away while they were on their way to the polling stations. They were later rescued.

There were reports of YSRCP workers attempting to attack TDP’s Narasaraopet Lok Sabha candidate Krishnadeva Rayalu by throwing stones at him at the Dondapadu village.

Three cars were reportedly damaged in the attack. Krishnadeva Rayalu lodged a complaint with the ECI in this regard.

The CEO ordered the suspension of the police official who facilitated the escape of accused persons involved in the abduction of TDP booth agents, a press release from his office said.

Also Read: Violence, clashes and kidnaps mar AP’s simultaneous polls to Lok Sabha and state assembly

YSRCP, TDP trading allegations of violence against each other

In another incident, a case was registered under relevant sections in connection with a scuffle that broke out between YSRCP MLA A Siva Kumar and a voter at Tenali in Guntur district.

The incident occurred when Siva Kumar attempted to jump the queue and was questioned by one of the voters. In a fit of rage, the legislator slapped the man, who did not hold himself back and returned the favour.

The TDP and YSRCP traded allegations of violence against each other’s supporters at multiple locations in the state, especially in Palnadu, Kadapa and Annamayya districts.

YSRCP wrote to EC alleging violations by rival TDP in assembly constituencies such as Vemuru, Darsi, Icchapuram, Kuppam, Macherla, Markapuram, and others.

It alleged that TDP leaders captured five polling booths in the Vemuru constituency and rigged the votes. CEO Meena noted that Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) were damaged in eight polling stations in Macherla constituency.

Cars belonging to the ruling party and TDP were damaged, said a police official. A TDP agent was attacked at Nakkaladinne village in Myduruku constituency, leading to his hospitalisation, police said.

Also Read: BJP accuses YSR Congress of attacking NDA alliance workers during polls

‘Law and order situation under control’

In Tadipatri, a BSF jawan sustained an eye injury when TDP and YSRCP men pelted stones at each other. Tensions escalated in Om Shanthi Nagar in Tadipatri when the two groups clashed.

TDP and YSRCP workers clashed in the Kothapalli village of the Pedakurpadu constituency in the Guntur district as well. Police swung into action and dispersed the two groups.

Meanwhile, Shankha Brata Bagchi, ADGP, Law & Order said the situation was under control.

“Now we will see what more needs to be done so that the situation returns to normal in the district…” said Bagchi.

The ADGP was camping in the district until 1 am today, monitoring the situation in places such as Macherla, Rentichintala and Narasaraopeta which witnessed violence.

Bagchi said steps were being taken to arrest all those involved in the violence. Most of the incidents were clashes between the YSRCP and TDP workers over perceived violations of the Model Code of Conduct.

Polling was held for 175 Assembly and 25 Lok Sabha seats in Andhra Pradesh on 13 May. While Andhra Pradesh recorded provisional polling of 68.12 percent for the Lok Sabha elections, the Assembly elections in the state recorded a turnout of 68.04 percent.

The top contestants in Andhra Pradesh included current Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy (Pulivendula), his sister and APCC president YS Sharmila (Kadapa Lok Sabha), TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu (Kuppam), Jana Sena chief Pawan Kalyan (Pithapuram) and BJP state president D Purandeswari (Rajamahendravaram Lok Sabha).

(Edited by Shauqueen Mizaj)