Hyderabad: Every trick put to use in MLC polls

BJP MLC candidate N Ramachandra Rao and TRS candidate S Vanidevi campaigning for Sunday graduate MLC polls
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BJP MLC candidate N Ramachandra Rao and TRS candidate S Vanidevi campaigning for Sunday graduate MLC polls

Highlights

Graduates offered with liquor, money, gifts

Hyderabad: The high-pitched poll campaign for the election for the two MLC posts has come to an end on Friday evening.

The polling is set to be held on Sunday in which nearly 11-lakh graduate voters in the poll bound Hyderabad- Rangareddy- Mahbubnagar and Nalgonda- Khammam – Warangal graduates' constituencies would cast their vote. However, the MLC polls are witnessing a new dimension this time and that is money, liquor and gifts are being used to lure the voters.

The interesting part is that the contestants in graduates' constituencies are professors, post-graduates and educationists and the voters are graduates.

But as these elections have become a matter of prestige for main political parties like the TRS, BJP and Congress, new methods are being adopted. While the BJP wants to continue its forward surge after the Dubbaka by-election and its good performance in the GHMC elections, the TRS wants to put brakes to the efforts of the BJP.

As part of this poll strategy, voters are being categorised into male, female and teetotallers. Major parties are offering premium brand liquor to men which includes government teachers and local staff working in various departments, silver ornaments and electrical appliances to women and note-for-vote to teetotallers. The amount being offered, it is alleged, ranges between Rs 3,000 and Rs 5,000. The police on Friday evening had caught a few people who were found distributing money neatly packed in envelopes.

In the old Nalgonda and Mahbubnagar districts , where the number of government employee voters are considerably high, the Assembly segment in-charges from the ruling TRS and Congress are directly visiting the voters houses and presenting the gifts.

In some cases, the voters are given gift vouchers to collect the gifts from nearby Shopping Malls.

The private employees and unemployed graduate voters are in high demand in old Khammam, Warangal and Ranga Reddy districts. The local leaders were entrusted the responsibility of distributing cash gifts to the voters at their doorsteps. It is learnt that Rs 5,000 to Rs 6,000 is given to each voter and they were asked to take an oath that they would cast their first preference vote to the party offering money or gifts.

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