Polling begins for bypolls in Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, West Bengal

In Tamil Nadu, nearly 7.54 lakh voters are expected to exercise their vote

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Chennai/Kolkata, Nov 19: The polling for three Tamil Nadu assembly constituencies -- Thirupparankundram, Aravakkurichi and Thanjavur -- and the lone Nellithope constituency in Puducherry began at 7 a.m. on Saturday.

In Tamil Nadu, nearly 7.54 lakh voters are expected to exercise their vote and decide the fate of 81 candidates in the fray in the three constituencies.

Bypolls being held in TN, Puducherry, WB

In Aravakkurichi, ruling AIADMK's V. Senthil Balaji will fight it out against the DMK's K.C. Palanisamy while at Thirupparankundram the AIADMK's A.K. Bose will take on the DMK's P. Saravanan.

In Thanjavur, the AIADMK's M. Rengasamy is pitted against the DMK's Anjugam Bhoopathy. In Thirupparankundram, the by-election has been necessitated by the death of AIADMK's legislator S.S. Seenivel.

While there are other parties in the contest, the contest is mainly between the AIADMK and the DMK in Tamil Nadu.

In Puducherry's Nellithope, Congress leader V. Narayanasamy is contesting against AIADMK nominee Om Shakthi Segar.

The counting of votes will be held on November 22. Meanwhile, polling began amidst enthusiasm for by-elections to two Lok Sabha and one assembly seats in West Bengal at 7 a.m.

The counting of votes will be held on November 22

An electorate of nearly 3,524,977, including 1,689,735 females and 38 from the third gender are eligible to choose their representatives from among 23 candidates vying for honours in Cooch Behar (Reserved-Scheduled Castes) and Tamluk parliamentary constituencies and Monteshwar assembly seat.

Cooch Behar has the maximum number of contestants (10), followed by Tamluk (7) and Monteshwar (6), whose fate would be decided in over 500 Electronic Voting machines spread across 4,121 polling stations.

The state's principal political parties -- the ruling Trinamool Congress, the Congress, the Left Front and the BJP -- are in fray for all three seats.

The elections are being held under the shadow of the central government's demonetisation move to unearth black money and counterfeit coins, that has caused turmoil across the nation.

The Cooch Behar parliamentary constituency fell vacant after the death of Trinamool's Renuka Sinha, while Tamluk has gone to the hustings as the incumbent MP Suvendu Adhikari became a minister in Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's Cabinet.

Trinamool lawmaker Sajal Panja's death has caused the Monteshwar assembly by-poll.

IANS

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