The stage is all set for the elections to the mandal and zilla parishad territorial constituencies across the State.
In all, elections will be held for 197 ZPTCs and 2,166 MPTCs in the first of the three-phased election on Monday. Elections to these rural local bodies are being held for the first time since the formation of Telangana in June 2014.
There are 882 candidates in the fray for the 197 ZPTCs with four candidates in the fray for each seat on an average. The ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) is fielding 195, the Congress (190) and independents account for a major chunk of 193 candidates.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) too had fielded a significant number of 171 candidates in the ZPTC polls.
In respect of the MPTCs, elections are being held for the 2,166 seats with a total of 7,072 candidates in the fray, putting the average number of contestants for each seat little over 3.
Telangana State Election Commission has declared 69 MPTCs and two ZPTC candidates as unanimously elected after the returning officers and district-level officials were satisfied that these candidates were the sole contestants from the respective seats.
The election body had also declared 63 MPTCs and one ZPTC contesting in the second phase as unanimously elected.
The TSEC made elaborate arrangements for the conduct of the elections on May 6, 10 and 14 in three phases. Over 1.5 lakh staff had been deployed for the smooth conduct of the elections even as adequate security arrangements had been made for the peaceful conduct of the polls.
The election authority is using the ballot paper for voting which would be held between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. while it would be between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. in five districts — Bhadradri Kothagudem, Jayashankar Bhupalpally, Mancherial, Mulug and Kumram Bheem Asifabad districts — which have been identified as left wing extremism dominated areas. The change in the timing for poll in these areas had been made in consultation with the district election officials as well as the superintendents of police concerned.
The election to Gaggallapally MPTC in Nagarkurnool had been put on hold after the allegations that an opposition candidate was offered cash to withdraw from the contest. The election authority had announced that fresh dates for the conduct of the election would be notified subsequently.