AMARAVATI: YSRC supporters swept the second phase of panchayat polls held in the state on Saturday. While candidates backed by the ruling party annexed about 80 per cent gram panchayats, those supported by TDP and other opposition parties won in the rest of the villages.
YSRC supporters bagged about 1,150 sarpanch seats out of the 1,400 villages where counting of votes was completed. TDP won around 200 seats. The counting of votes in the remaining 1,300 villages was in progress till the filing of the report.
Out of 539 unanimous sarpanch posts in the second phase, YSRC won around 510. It was a near-clean sweep for the ruling party in Prakasam and Anantapur districts. TDP-backed candidates won in some villages in Guntur district.
Polling for the second phase was mostly peaceful, barring minor skirmishes, with high turnouts reported in almost all the districts. Prakasam topped with 86 per cent polling, followed by Guntur (85%).
Krishna, which saw the highest polling percentage in first phase, saw 84 per cent polling. The state average stood at 81.61 per cent, almost similar to what was witnessed in the first phase.
Also, in a first for the state, Prakasam police pressed drone cameras for surveillance in 14 mandals of the district. The situation at polling centres was monitored through specially set-up TV screens. District SP Siddharth Kaushal they decided to take the tech route to prevent violence. “Drone cameras yielded wonderful results as not a single incident of violence was reported during the second phase of polling,” said Kaushal.
The decision to use drone cameras was made as over 65 per cent of polling stations in the second phase were categorised as hypersensitive or sensitive.
Out of 467 polling stations across 213 panchayats, as many as 126 stations were identified as hypersensitive and 179 as sensitive.
High turnout was witnessed in almost all the villages that went to polls. While 539 villages elected their sarpanches unanimously, polling was held in the remaining 2,738 villages in 13 districts. People lined up at the polling stations from 6.30 am.
The turnout was 10 per cent in the first two hours and touched 40 per cent by 10.30 am.
The next two hours added nearly 25 per cent to the turnout, taking the polling percentage to 65 per cent by 12.30 pm. Interestingly, Vizianagaram and Anantapur districts reported over 70 per cent polling by 12.30 itself.
While Anantapur, one of the sensitive districts in the state, witnessed 72 per cent polling, Vizianagaram reported 71 per cent by afternoon.
The trend continue till the completion of polling as Anantapur reported 81 per cent polling by 2.30 pm while all other districts reported over 70 per cent. Visakhapatnam district also witnessed high turnout in the last two hours.
Veteran Tollywood comedian Ramaprabha exercised her franchise at Ramacharla village of Madanapalle division in Chittoor district. Locals jostled to speak with the veteran actor. Minor clashes were reported in Krishna, Guntur and Srikakulam districts.