NELLORE: The counting of votes is currently underway for the bypoll to the Atmakuru assembly constituency in the SPS Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh on Sunday. The counting of votes is taking place at the Atmakur Engineering College in Nellorepalem. By the early trends it was quite clear that the ruling YSR Congress Party candidate was leading in the counting of votes. By the completion of the 13th round at 11 am, YSRCP was leading by 66,650 votes.
The bypoll was necessitated by the sudden demise of sitting legislator Mekapati Goutham Reddy on February 21. He was the Industries and Information Technology Minister in the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy's first Cabinet.
While YSR Congress Party had fielded Goutham's younger brother Mekapati Vikram Reddy as its candidate. The rival TDP followed the tradition of not putting up a candidate if a sitting legislator dies. However, the BJP fielded Gundlapalli Bharat Kumar as its candidate.
By the fifth round of counting it was clear that the YSRCP was heading for a majority win. BJP candidate Bharath Kumar left the counting hall as it was evident who the winner is going to be.
At 11 am and after the 12th round of counting the YSRCP was in a majority with over 50,654 votes and the BJP at 12202 votes.
Out of the 605 postal ballots counted, 205 were valid and out of those, the YSRCP got 167 votes.
About 67 per cent of the 2.11 lakh voters exercised their franchise on June 23 in the Atmakur by-election. The polling was conducted peacefully barring a few stray incidents in all 279 polling stations in the constituency.