JayalalithaaChennai: Polling for the crucial bypoll to Dr Radhakrishnan Nagar constituency, from where Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and AIADMK supremo Jayalalithaa is seeking re-election, began today at 8 AM amid tight security.

Twenty eight candidates, including social activist “Traffic” Ramaswamy are in the fray. However, the main contest is between Jayalalithaa and CPI nominee C Mahendran.

One of the smallest constituencies in Tamil Nadu, R K Nagar has 1,20,210 men voters and 1,23,014 women voters and 77 voters of the other category, the third gender, according to the Election Commission.

Security personnel, including from the Central police forces, have been deployed to ensure peaceful polling across the 230 polling stations.Six static surveillance teams, 28 flying squads and 15 pickets for area domination purposes have been set up.

The flying squads has Central Armed Police Forces to ensure peaceful polling process. Adequate CAPFs have been posted at each polling station in addition to the State Police forces.
All the polling stations are also covered by micro observers and the entire poll proceedings is being recorded using laptops with camera and internet connectivity.A special control room has been set up in the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer to closely monitor the polling process in the polling stations.

Opinion polls have been prohibited for 48 hours, commencing from 5 PM on June 25. Exit polls have also been banned between 7 am and 5.30 pm today.

The byelection was necessitated after AIADMK’s P Vetrivel had vacated it in May, apparently to enable Jayalalithaa seek re-election.Jayalalithaa has to fulfil a constitutional requirement of getting elected as MLA within six months of becoming CM.

She returned to the top post on May 23 after being acquitted in a wealth case. She had been convicted in the case in September last by a trial court in Bangalore.