2006 local body polls peaceful than 2001 polls
Hyderabad, Jul 3: The elections to the 1,097 ZPTCs and 15,366 MPTCs in 22 districts passed off by and large peacefully compared to 2001 elections.
Police sources said Kadapa, the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister's district, witnessed peaceful elections this time when compared to the elections in 2001.
The rioting cases had come down from 31 cases with four reported to be hurt this time as compared to 21 in the last elections.
Two bomb hurling incidents were reported when compared to three last time. Police opened fire in air at two places when compared to eight last time.
In all 99 persons were arrested last time and this time none were arrested. Booth capturing took place at 28 places in 2001, when compared to three now and repolls ordered in 36 places when compared to six this time.
Though Guntur continued to witness violence, it was comparatively less. In all, 38 rioting cases were reported in 2001 in Guntur when compared to one case this time. There were 12 cases of bomb hurling last time in comparison with four cases this time.
During ZPTC and MPTC elections in 2001, the total pre-poll offences were 290, including four murders while in 2006, 143 pre-poll offences, including four murders were reported.
On the polling day in the first phase, two persons were murdered as compared to three in 2001. In the second phase, one person was murdered this year, while no murders were reported in 2001.
On the first phase of polls (June 28), 111 persons were arrested in connection with various poll-related violence and offences in comparision to 803 in 2001.
In the first phase, 51 persons were hurt and in 2001 elections 102 were hurt. However, the number of persons arrested in second phase of elections was not released by the officials.
The police opened fire in the air to disperse the angry crowd and rival political groups at 12 places during the elections, the highest being nine times on the day of first phase poll on June 28. In the 2001 elections, the police opened fire at 16 places and in 2006 election it was 11 places during first phase. Likewise, during second phase at three places police opened fire in comparision with six places in 2001.
In first phase of elections, there were two cases of bomb hurling this year, while in 2001 there were four cases. Likewise, there were four cases of hurling of bombs this time as against 12 cases in 2001 during second phase.
Though Maiosts gave a call to boycott elections, there was no impact on the polling. However, Maoists blasted mines on the Khammam and Chhattisgarh border during second phase of elections and police unearthed a tiffin box bomb from near a bus stop in Warangal.
The police suspect that the bomb was planted by Maoists to scare the public.
The police deployed 61,879 force during first phase, as against 52,105 in 2001 for 577 ZPTCs and 7501 MPTCs in 11 districts.
Likewise, during second phase 61,021 police personnel were on duty as against 53,046 in 2001 for 520 ZPTCs and 7865 MPTCs in 11 districts, they added.