National News Politics

Jagan Reddy’s Party MLA A Sivakumar Slaps Voter In Polling Queue

In a shocking incident amidst the Lok Sabha elections’ fourth phase polling, a video capturing YSRCP MLA A Sivakumar allegedly slapping a voter at a polling booth in Andhra Pradesh’s Guntur went viral on Monday, May 13.

In a video that has now gone viral, Tenali’s YSR Congress Party MLA A Sivakumar is seen approaching the voter and slapping him across the face. The voter returns the blow, and the MLA’s aides join him in launching an all-out assault on the voter. Other voters waiting for their turn are seen trying to stop the assault as the MLA’s aides keep hitting the voter. In the 10-second video, no security personnel can be seen intervening to rescue the voter.

It is unclear what happened before the exchange of blows began, but the MLA’s attack on the voter has been strongly criticized on social media. Both parties were seen striking each other, with the MLA’s supporters joining in to assault the voter. The police swiftly registered a case against Sivakumar and launched an investigation into the matter.

Sharing a video of the incident, TDP leader Nara Lokesh tweeted, “Voters who say that there is nothing to fear from YSRCP’s rowdyism, I applaud your courage.” According to reports, Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Shehzad Poonawalla also shared the video, describing the action of the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy’s party MLA as “arrogance and goondagardi.”

Posting the video on social media platform X, Shehzad Poonawalla wrote, “VVIP arrogance & goondagardi on full display. YSRCP MLA A Sivakumar slaps voter in Andhra Pradesh’s Guntur. Telangana Congress neta kicks voter. Congress’ Randeep Surjewala once said Janta is Rakshas !. If this is how they treat voters at the polling booth, imagine what they will do post-election. Time to kick these parties and netas out!”

YSR Congress Party MLA Abdul Hafeez Khan has said they are reviewing the viral video and alleged a conspiracy to defame the ruling party. On its social media handles, the party has shared visuals of its injured supporters and workers and alleged that TDP members had attacked them.

The viral video comes against the backdrop of a high-octane poll campaign in Andhra Pradesh, with leaders of the TDP and YSR Congress Party exchanging solid words in the run-up to the polls.

Tempers are also running high because both parties have much at stake in this election. Mr Reddy, who has been in the saddle for a decade now, wants to repeat a victory in these polls. On the other side is Mr Naidu, who has joined ranks with the BJP and is pushing to come back to power.

Polling for all Lok Sabha seats in Andhra Pradesh commenced at 7 am, coinciding with a7 ambly elections. However, alongside the democratic exercise, reports of violence surfaced. The opposition TDP accused the ruling YSRCP of kidnapping its poll agents and assaulting others, allegedly disrupting the voting process.

According to Election Commission data, as of 11 am, Andhra Pradesh11 amed a voter turnout of 23.1% for the 25 Lok Sabha seats and 23% for the 175-seat Assembly. Notable figures, including Governor S Abdul Nazeer, Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy, TDP supremo N Chandrababu Naidu, and their families, cast their votes early in the day.

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