VIJAYAWADA: The Central Election Commission has released the election schedule for six MLC seats in the MLA quota in Andhra Pradesh. The polling will be held on March 15.
The nominations will be accepted from February 25 to March 4 followed by scrutiny on March 5, while the deadline for withdrawal of nominations is March 8. Polling will be held on March 15 from 9 am to 4pm. The counting will be on the same day at 5pm.
The term of four MLCs Thippeswamy, Sandhya Rani, Veeravenkata Chowdary and Sheikh Ahmed Iqbal, would end on March 29. In addition to the seat fell vacant by the resignation of Pilli Subhash Chandra Bose, by-election will be held also for the seat held by the deceased Challa Ramakrishna Reddy.
Elections will be held for six seats. Earlier, the CEC released the schedule for the MLC elections for two seats under teachers’ quota, in March. However, with the upcoming elections for MLCs, the YSRC is likely to increase its number in the legislative council.
Meanwhile, the state election commission opened its gates for complaints from candidates who were forcefully restricted from filing nominations or forced to withdraw from contest in the ZPTC and MPTC elections. Proof is a must for deciding on such complaints, the SEC Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar has made clear.
The SEC, via a notification on Thursday, directed the district collectors and returning officers to receive complaints from the affected candidates and submit reports by February 20 to decide on holding ZPTC and MPTC elections.
SEC Ramesh Kumar stated that on a request made by the state government on February 16 to continue with the process for the elections to MPTCs/ZPTCs which were postponed on March 15 last year due to the Covid outbreak.
The commission had received representations/complaints from aspiring contestants who were prevented from filing nominations or compelled to withdraw candidatures under duress and inducements during the earlier election process to MPTCs/ZPTCs in March 2020. It had also received complaints / representations from major political parties on poll aberrations and they also sought the intervention of the commission to restart the election process.
The commission said it had obtained legal opinion on the basis of which it is now going ahead with pragmatism as well as with concern for ensuring free and fair election process.
“Analogous to the reliefs already accorded in case of urban local body elections, which were widely welcomed in case of forced withdrawals due to duress / inducement and prevention from filing nominations, the commission intends to accommodate the same reliefs now in the case of MPTC/ZPTC elections. Thereby, the flaws in the election process stand redressed to the fullest extent,” the SEC said.